The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Both rare and common species make unique contributions to functional diversity in an ecosystem unaffected by human activities

Both rare and common species make unique contributions to functional diversity in an ecosystem unaffected by human activities
Both rare and common species make unique contributions to functional diversity in an ecosystem unaffected by human activities
Aim Rare species typically contribute more to functional diversity than common species. However, humans have altered the occupancy and abundance patterns of many species - the basis upon which we define ‘rarity’. Here, we use a globally unique dataset from hydrothermal vents – an untouched ecosystem – to test whether rare species over-contribute to functional diversity.  
Location Juan de Fuca Ridge hydrothermal vent fields, Northeast Pacific Ocean.
Methods We first conduct a comprehensive review to set up expectations for the relative contributions of rare and common species to functional diversity. We then quantify the rarity and commonness of 37 vent species with relevant trait information to assess the relationship between rarity and functional distinctiveness - a measure of the uniqueness of the traits of a species relative to traits of coexisting species. Next, we randomly assemble communities to test whether rare species over-contribute to functional diversity in artificial assemblages ranging in species richness. Then, we test whether biotic interactions influence functional diversity contributions by comparing the observed contribution of each species to a null expectation. Finally, we identify traits driving functional distinctiveness using a distance-based redundancy analysis.
Results Across functional diversity metrics and species richness levels, we find that both rare and common species can contribute functional uniqueness. Some species always offer unique trait combinations, and these species host bacterial symbionts and provide habitat complexity. Moreover, we find that contributions of species to functional diversity may be influenced by biotic interactions.  
Main Conclusions Our findings show that many common species make persistent, unique contributions to functional diversity. Thus, it is key to consider whether the abundance and occupancy of species have been reduced, relative to historical baselines, when interpreting the contributions of rare species to functional diversity. Our work highlights the importance of testing ecological theory in ecosystems unaffected by human activities for the conservation of biodiversity.
conservation, diversity, functional distinctiveness, biological trait, human impact, hydrothermal vent, rarity, review, species richness, unique trait combination
1472-4642
Chapman, Abbie Sarah Amy
5e63f909-bd6c-4bdd-a9e3-f81af0978a42
Tunnicliffe, Verena
905c2d00-3c61-46e0-91f5-0ab7f7ab0992
Bates, Amanda E
a96e267d-6d22-4232-b7ed-ce4e448a2a34
Chapman, Abbie Sarah Amy
5e63f909-bd6c-4bdd-a9e3-f81af0978a42
Tunnicliffe, Verena
905c2d00-3c61-46e0-91f5-0ab7f7ab0992
Bates, Amanda E
a96e267d-6d22-4232-b7ed-ce4e448a2a34

Chapman, Abbie Sarah Amy, Tunnicliffe, Verena and Bates, Amanda E (2018) Both rare and common species make unique contributions to functional diversity in an ecosystem unaffected by human activities Diversity and Distributions (doi:10.1111/ddi.12712).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Aim Rare species typically contribute more to functional diversity than common species. However, humans have altered the occupancy and abundance patterns of many species - the basis upon which we define ‘rarity’. Here, we use a globally unique dataset from hydrothermal vents – an untouched ecosystem – to test whether rare species over-contribute to functional diversity.  
Location Juan de Fuca Ridge hydrothermal vent fields, Northeast Pacific Ocean.
Methods We first conduct a comprehensive review to set up expectations for the relative contributions of rare and common species to functional diversity. We then quantify the rarity and commonness of 37 vent species with relevant trait information to assess the relationship between rarity and functional distinctiveness - a measure of the uniqueness of the traits of a species relative to traits of coexisting species. Next, we randomly assemble communities to test whether rare species over-contribute to functional diversity in artificial assemblages ranging in species richness. Then, we test whether biotic interactions influence functional diversity contributions by comparing the observed contribution of each species to a null expectation. Finally, we identify traits driving functional distinctiveness using a distance-based redundancy analysis.
Results Across functional diversity metrics and species richness levels, we find that both rare and common species can contribute functional uniqueness. Some species always offer unique trait combinations, and these species host bacterial symbionts and provide habitat complexity. Moreover, we find that contributions of species to functional diversity may be influenced by biotic interactions.  
Main Conclusions Our findings show that many common species make persistent, unique contributions to functional diversity. Thus, it is key to consider whether the abundance and occupancy of species have been reduced, relative to historical baselines, when interpreting the contributions of rare species to functional diversity. Our work highlights the importance of testing ecological theory in ecosystems unaffected by human activities for the conservation of biodiversity.

Text Manuscript_with_Figures_for_Pure - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 4 April 2019.
Request a copy

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 16 December 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 26 January 2018
Keywords: conservation, diversity, functional distinctiveness, biological trait, human impact, hydrothermal vent, rarity, review, species richness, unique trait combination

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 416652
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/416652
ISSN: 1472-4642
PURE UUID: f388923c-a9e4-44ac-b79c-92b45b6e6872
ORCID for Abbie Sarah Amy Chapman: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-7812-2046

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 04 Jan 2018 17:30
Last modified: 26 Jan 2018 17:30

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Verena Tunnicliffe
Author: Amanda E Bates

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Library staff edit
Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×