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Ecosystem responses to increased variability in rainfall, a prediction of general circulation models, were assessed in native grassland by reducing storm frequency and increasing rainfall quantity per storm during a 4-year experiment. More extreme rainfall patterns, without concurrent changes in total rainfall quantity, increased temporal variability in(More)
Water availability limits plant growth and production in almost all terrestrial ecosystems. However, biomes differ substantially in sensitivity of aboveground net primary production (ANPP) to between-year variation in precipitation. Average rain-use efficiency (RUE; ANPP/precipitation) also varies between biomes, supposedly because of differences in(More)
uman activities have caused dramatic and unprecedented changes in the global chemical and physical environment, including well-documented increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO 2) concentration and mean annual temperature (Karl and Knight 1998, New et al. 2001, IPCC 2007). If greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase at present rates, atmospheric(More)
Although the potential for increased temperature is the primary and best-studied aspect of anthropogenic climate change, altered rainfall patterns, increased storm intensity, and more severe droughts are also predicted in most climate-change scenarios. We altered experimentally the rainfall regime in a native tallgrass prairie in northeastern Kansas and(More)
Many ecosystems worldwide are dominated by introduced plant species, leading to loss of biodiversity and ecosystem function. A common but rarely tested assumption is that these plants are more abundant in introduced vs. native communities, because ecological or evolutionary-based shifts in populations underlie invasion success. Here, data for 26 herbaceous(More)
Climate change drivers affect plant community productivity via three pathways: (i) direct effects of drivers on plants; (ii) the response of species abundances to drivers (community response); and (iii) the feedback effect of community change on productivity (community effect). The contribution of each pathway to driver-productivity relationships depends on(More)
How ecosystem productivity and species richness are interrelated is one of the most debated subjects in the history of ecology. Decades of intensive study have yet to discern the actual mechanisms behind observed global patterns. Here, by integrating the predictions from multiple theories into a single model and using data from 1,126 grassland plots(More)
Terrestrial ecosystem productivity is widely accepted to be nutrient limited(1). Although nitrogen (N) is deemed a key determinant of aboveground net primary production (ANPP)(2,3), the prevalence of co-limitation by N and phosphorus (P) is increasingly recognized(4-8). However, the extent to which terrestrial productivity is co-limited by nutrients other(More)
R ecent technological advances in molecular biology have provided biologists with an unprecedented glimpse of the genomes of living organisms by allowing global assessment of variation in gene sequences and gene expression. A number of recent reviews have outlined the potential for understanding organisms across scales from genes to ecosystems by applying(More)
Studies of experimental grassland communities have demonstrated that plant diversity can stabilize productivity through species asynchrony, in which decreases in the biomass of some species are compensated for by increases in others. However, it remains unknown whether these findings are relevant to natural ecosystems, especially those for which species(More)