Comparing network analysis methodologies for consumer-resource relations at species and ecosystems scales

Scharler UM & Fath BD (2009). Comparing network analysis methodologies for consumer-resource relations at species and ecosystems scales. Ecological Modelling 220 (22): 3210-3218. DOI:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2009.02.011.

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Abstract

This research compares two existing methodologies, mixed trophic impact analysis, which use network analysis to evaluate the direct, pair-wise, and indirect, holistic, ecological relations between ecosystem compartments. The two approaches have many similarities, but differ in some key assumptions which affect both the final results and interpretations. Here, we briefly introduce both methodologies through a series of two simple examples; a 3-compartment competition model and a 3-compartment food chain model, and then apply the methodologies to a 15-compartment ecosystem model of the Chesapeake Bay. This example demonstrates how implementing the various conceptual and methodological assumptions lead to differing results. Notably, the overall number of positive relations is greatly affected by the treatment of the self-interactions and the handling of detritus compartments lead to a distinction between ecological or trophic relations. We recommend slight changes to both methodologies, not necessarily in order to bring them completely together, but because each has some points which are stronger and better defensible.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ecological network analysis; Flow analysis; Mutualism; Competition; Indirect effects; Food webs; Ecological relations; Trophic relations; Predator-prey relations
Research Programs: Dynamic Systems (DYN)
Bibliographic Reference: Ecological Modelling; 220(22):3210-3218 (24 November 2009)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:42
Last Modified: 14 Sep 2016 10:02
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/8832

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