Food Web Complexity and Community Dynamics

  title={Food Web Complexity and Community Dynamics},
  author={Gary A. Polis and Donald R. Strong},
  journal={The American Naturalist},
  pages={813 - 846}
  • G. Polis, D. Strong
  • Published 27 April 1996
  • Environmental Science
  • The American Naturalist
Food webs in nature have multiple, reticulate connections between a diversity of consumers and resources. Such complexity affects web dynamics: it first spreads the direct effects of consumption and productivity throughout the web rather than focusing them at particular "trophic levels." Second, consumer densities are often donor controlled with food from across the trophic spectrum, the herbivore and detrital channels, other habitats, life-history omnivory, and even trophic mutualism. Although… 
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