Ecology Plant-Herbivore and Mutualism

Ecology Plant-Herbivore and Mutualism - Plant-Herbivore...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–14. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: Plant-Herbivore Interactions Plant-Herbivore Interactions Neglected until about 30 years ago, plant herbivore interactions and the related field of chemical ecology encompass some of the most important and rapidly developing areas of ecological research. Reasons include: Plant-Herbivore Interactions 1. Globally it is estimated that herbivores consume from 7% (Pimentel 1988) to 18% (Cyr and Pace 1993) of leaf area in terrestrial ecosystems and from 30- 79% of plant net production in aquatic ecosystems (Cyr and Pace 1993). Plant-Herbivore Interactions 2. Caught between plants and predators herbivores must deal with the chemical and morphological defenses of plants while simultaneously defending themselves from their own predators. Plant-Herbivore Interactions The study of plants and their herbivores leads to new understandings of interactions involving more than two trophic levels. Plant-Herbivore Interactions 3. Herbivores have been, and still are, important to the evolution of plants and other animals. Through their activities, herbivores have evolutionarily shaped the plant community, partially determining the diversity, abundance, and life form of plants. Plant-Herbivore Interactions This, in turn, affects what other types of animals are present and influences ecosystem processes such as energy flow and nutrient cycling. Plant-Herbivore Interactions 4. Herbivores are economically important. In agricultural systems, herbivores may often consume 50% of net productivity and therefore depress yield. Under the worst of circumstances agricultural crops may be wiped out. Plant-Herbivore Interactions Furthermore, the animals we raise for food and other products are almost all herbivores themselves. Thus a better understanding of plant-herbivore relationships is crucial to the success of our agricultural endeavors. Plant-Herbivore Interactions The relationship between plant secondary compounds and herbivore-plant relationships was first outlined by G.S. Fraenkel (1959). Since the compounds under discussion are not part of the primary metabolism of plants, they were and still are known as "secondary compounds." Plant-Herbivore Interactions Fraenkel suggested that plant secondary compounds have evolved as defenses against herbivores and herbivores have strongly affected plant evolution. Plant-Herbivore Interactions The basic theory, which has guided ecological thinking concerning plant-herbivore interactions, was set forth by Ehrlich and Raven (1964). Ehrlich and Raven At that time the great diversity of...
View Full Document

Page1 / 141

Ecology Plant-Herbivore and Mutualism - Plant-Herbivore...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 14. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online