Aquatic Food Web Ecology Lab, Dalhousie University

Research in the Aquatic Food Web Ecology Lab based at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, focuses on the consequences of biodiversity loss to the functioning and stability of aquatic food webs. All of our work is done in a food web context, which means that its not just the numbers of species that we are interested in, but also the structure of the food webs in which those species are embedded. Most of our work is done in aquatic microcosms, small container ecosystems in which we can assemble food webs and then subject them to various types of disturbance regimes . We also use mathematical models to run "in silico" experiments, otherwise known as computer simulations, to study problems that are too complex or just not possible to conduct in natural systems.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Binary versus flow-based webs

Estimating trophic position in marine and estuarine food webs -- EcoSphere Binary approaches to assembling feeding links are often criticized as being less powerful and accurate than flow-based methods. Our results show a high concordance between binary and d15N estimates of trophic position as well as showing that in some cases binary estimates are better predictors of d15N than flow-based estimates, reaffirming the robustness of the structural approach to assembling food webs.

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