Bernhard Schmid

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Concern is growing about the consequences of biodiversity loss for ecosystem functioning, for the provision of ecosystem services, and for human well being. Experimental evidence for a relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem process rates is compelling, but the issue remains contentious. Here, we present the first rigorous quantitative assessment of(More)
Biodiversity is rapidly declining worldwide, and there is consensus that this can decrease ecosystem functioning and services. It remains unclear, though, whether few or many of the species in an ecosystem are needed to sustain the provisioning of ecosystem services. It has been hypothesized that most species would promote ecosystem services if many times,(More)
Solidago altissima and S. gigantea were introduced from North America to Europe ~250 yr ago and are now considered aggressive weeds in abandoned fields and conservation areas. We studied patterns of genetic differentiation in these two species along their present latitudinal range in Europe (44-61 degrees N). Two generations of clonally propagated ramets(More)
We studied the effects of plant diversity on abundance of invertebrate herbivores, parasitoids and predators in two grassland communities (one in Switzerland and one in Sweden) in which plant species richness and functional diversity have been experimentally manipulated. Among herbivores, the abundance of only the most sessile and specialised groups(More)
There is concern that species loss may adversely affect ecosystem functioning and stability. But although there is evidence that biodiversity loss can lead to reductions in biomass production, there is no direct evidence that biodiversity loss affects ecosystem resistance (ability to withstand perturbation) or resilience (recovery from perturbation). Yet(More)
Soil microbes play key roles in ecosystems, yet the impact of their diversity on plant communities is still poorly understood. Here we demonstrate that the diversity of belowground plant-associated soil fungi promotes plant productivity and plant coexistence. Using additive partitioning of biodiversity effects developed in plant biodiversity studies, we(More)
1. We studied the community and food-web structure of trap-nesting insects in restored meadows and at increasing distances within intensively managed grassland at 13 sites in Switzerland to test if declining species diversity correlates with declining interaction diversity and changes in food-web structure. 2. We analysed 49 quantitative food webs(More)
The loss of plant species from terrestrial ecosystems may cause changes in soil decomposer communities and in decomposition of organic material with potential further consequences for other ecosystem processes. This was tested in experimental communities of 1, 2, 4, 8, 32 plant species and of 1, 2 or 3 functional groups (grasses, legumes and non-leguminous(More)
Carex curvula is a very slow-growing rhizomatous sedge that forms extensive stands in the European an alpine belt. The recruitment of sexual progeny is extremely rare and propagation occurs predominantly through clonal growth. The randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) technique was used to analyse clonal structure in a small patch (2.0x0.4 m sampling(More)
Crop rotation schemes are believed to work by preventing specialist soil-borne pests from depressing the future yields of similar crops. In ecology, such negative plant-soil feedbacks may be viewed as a type of Janzen-Connell effect, which promotes species coexistence and diversity by preventing the same species from repeatedly occupying a particular site.(More)