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How Plant Neighborhood Composition Influences Herbivory

Title: How Plant Neighborhood Composition Influences Herbivory: Testing Four Mechanisms Of Associational Resistance And Susceptibility.
Name(s): Kim, Tania N., author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Journal Article
Journal Article
Date Issued: 2017-05-09
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Neighboring plants can decrease or increase each other's likelihood of damage from herbivores through associational resistance or susceptibility, respectively. Associational effects (AE) can transpire through changes in herbivore or plant traits that affect herbivore movement, densities, and feeding behaviors to ultimately affect plant damage. While much work has focused on understanding the mechanisms that underlie associational effects, we know little about how these mechanisms are influenced by neighborhood composition, i.e., plant density or relative frequency which is necessary to make predictions about when AE should occur in nature. Using a series of field and greenhouse experiments, I examined how plant density and relative frequency affected plant damage to Solanum carolinense and four mechanisms that underlie AE; (i) accumulation of insect herbivores and arthropod predators, (ii) microclimate conditions, (iii) plant resistance, and (iv) specialist herbivore preference. I found a positive relationship between S. carolinense damage and the relative frequency of a non-focal neighbor (Solidago altissima) and all four AE mechanisms were influenced by one or multiple neighborhood components. Frequency-dependence in S. carolinense damage is most likely due to greater generalist herbivore load on S. carolinense (through spillover from S. altissima) with microclimate variables, herbivore preference, predation pressures, and plant resistance having relatively weaker effects. Associational effects may have long-term consequences for these two plant species during plant succession and understanding context-dependent herbivory has insect pest management implication for other plant species in agriculture and forestry.
Identifier: FSU_libsubv1_wos_000401314000013 (IID), 10.1371/journal.pone.0176499 (DOI)
Keywords: damage, field, brassica-napus, communication, defense, density, insect herbivores, interspecific competition, soil-moisture, solidago-altissima
Publication Note: The publisher's version of record is available at
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Host Institution: FSU
Is Part Of: Plos One.
Issue: iss. 5, vol. 12

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Kim, T. N. (2017). How Plant Neighborhood Composition Influences Herbivory: Testing Four Mechanisms Of Associational Resistance And Susceptibility. Plos One. Retrieved from