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The role of ants, birds and bats for ecosystem functions and yield in oil palm plantations

Denmead, Lisa H.; Darras, Kevin; Clough, Yann LU ; Diaz, Patrick; Grass, Ingo; Hoffmann, Munir P.; Nurdiansyah, Fuad; Fardiansah, Rico and Tscharntke, Teja (2017) In Ecology 98(7). p.1945-1956
Abstract

One of the world's most important and rapidly expanding crops, oil palm, is associated with low levels of biodiversity. Changes in predator communities might alter ecosystem services and subsequently sustainable management but these links have received little attention to date. Here, for the first time, we manipulated ant and flying vertebrate (birds and bats) access to oil palms in six smallholder plantations in Sumatra (Indonesia) and measured effects on arthropod communities, related ecosystem functions (herbivory, predation, decomposition and pollination) and crop yield. Arthropod predators increased in response to reductions in ant and bird access, but the overall effect of experimental manipulations on ecosystem functions was... (More)

One of the world's most important and rapidly expanding crops, oil palm, is associated with low levels of biodiversity. Changes in predator communities might alter ecosystem services and subsequently sustainable management but these links have received little attention to date. Here, for the first time, we manipulated ant and flying vertebrate (birds and bats) access to oil palms in six smallholder plantations in Sumatra (Indonesia) and measured effects on arthropod communities, related ecosystem functions (herbivory, predation, decomposition and pollination) and crop yield. Arthropod predators increased in response to reductions in ant and bird access, but the overall effect of experimental manipulations on ecosystem functions was minimal. Similarly, effects on yield were not significant. We conclude that ecosystem functions and productivity in oil palm are, under current levels of low pest pressure and large pollinator populations, robust to large reductions of major predators.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
biodiversity, crop yield, decomposition, ecosystem services, exclosure, exclusion experiment, herbivory, pollination, predation, predators
in
Ecology
volume
98
issue
7
pages
12 pages
publisher
Ecological Society of America
external identifiers
  • scopus:85021414040
  • wos:000404875100020
ISSN
0012-9658
DOI
10.1002/ecy.1882
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
6508e31c-8bfe-49db-97d6-bb77e13658c5
date added to LUP
2017-07-11 11:57:32
date last changed
2018-01-07 12:11:16
@article{6508e31c-8bfe-49db-97d6-bb77e13658c5,
  abstract     = {<p>One of the world's most important and rapidly expanding crops, oil palm, is associated with low levels of biodiversity. Changes in predator communities might alter ecosystem services and subsequently sustainable management but these links have received little attention to date. Here, for the first time, we manipulated ant and flying vertebrate (birds and bats) access to oil palms in six smallholder plantations in Sumatra (Indonesia) and measured effects on arthropod communities, related ecosystem functions (herbivory, predation, decomposition and pollination) and crop yield. Arthropod predators increased in response to reductions in ant and bird access, but the overall effect of experimental manipulations on ecosystem functions was minimal. Similarly, effects on yield were not significant. We conclude that ecosystem functions and productivity in oil palm are, under current levels of low pest pressure and large pollinator populations, robust to large reductions of major predators.</p>},
  author       = {Denmead, Lisa H. and Darras, Kevin and Clough, Yann and Diaz, Patrick and Grass, Ingo and Hoffmann, Munir P. and Nurdiansyah, Fuad and Fardiansah, Rico and Tscharntke, Teja},
  issn         = {0012-9658},
  keyword      = {biodiversity,crop yield,decomposition,ecosystem services,exclosure,exclusion experiment,herbivory,pollination,predation,predators},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {07},
  number       = {7},
  pages        = {1945--1956},
  publisher    = {Ecological Society of America},
  series       = {Ecology},
  title        = {The role of ants, birds and bats for ecosystem functions and yield in oil palm plantations},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.1882},
  volume       = {98},
  year         = {2017},
}