+ Site Statistics
+ Search Articles
+ PDF Full Text Service
How our service works
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

Variation in Plant Response to Herbivory Underscored by Functional Traits



Variation in Plant Response to Herbivory Underscored by Functional Traits



Plos one 11(12): E0166714



The effects of herbivory can shape plant communities and evolution. However, the many forms of herbivory costs and the wide variation in herbivory pressure, including across latitudinal gradients, can make predicting the effects of herbivory on different plant species difficult. Functional trait approaches may aid in contextualizing and standardizing the assessment of herbivory impacts. Here we assessed the response of 26 old-field plant species to simulated defoliation in a greenhouse setting by measuring whole plant and leaf level traits in control and treated individuals. Simulated defoliation had no significant effects on any plant traits measured. However, the baseline leaf level traits of healthy plants consistently predicted the log response ratio for these species whole plant response to defoliation. The latitudinal mid-point of species' distributions was also significantly correlated with aboveground biomass and total leaf area responses, with plants with a more northern distribution being more negatively impacted by treatment. These results indicate that even in the absence of significant overall impacts, functional traits may aid in predicting variability in plant responses to defoliation and in identifying the underlying limitations driving those responses.

Please choose payment method:






(PDF emailed within 0-6 h: $19.90)

Accession: 059234320

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 27936155

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0166714


Related references

Plant growth chemical traits and insect herbivory in response to variation in the timing of exposure stress. Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America 72(2 Suppl.): 179, 1991

Interspecific variation of plant traits associated with resistance to herbivory among four species of Ficus (moraceae). Annals of Botany 94(3): 377-384, 2004

Population variation in plant traits associated with ant attraction and herbivory in Chamaecrista fasciculata (Fabaceae). Oecologia 156(3): 577-588, 2008

Population Variation in Plant Traits Associated with Ant Attraction and Herbivory in Chamaecrista fasciculata (Fabaceae). Oecologia 156(3): 577-588, 2008

Long-term deer exclosure alters soil properties, plant traits, understory plant community and insect herbivory, but not the functional relationships among them. Oecologia 184(3): 685-699, 2017

Biotic and abiotic factors associated with altitudinal variation in plant traits and herbivory in a dominant oak species. American Journal of Botany 103(12): 2070-2078, 2016

Plant traits predict inter- and intraspecific variation in susceptibility to herbivory in a hyperdiverse Neotropical rain forest tree community. Journal of Ecology 102(4): 939-952, 2014

Response of Macrophyte Traits to Herbivory and Neighboring Species: Integration of the Functional Trait Framework in the Context of Ecological Invasions. Frontiers in Plant Science 9: 1981, 2018

Variation in habitat suitability does not always relate to variation in species' plant functional traits. Biology Letters 6(1): 120-123, 2010

Testing genotypic variation of an invasive plant species in response to soil disturbance and herbivory. Oecologia 183(4): 1135-1141, 2017

Plant functional traits in studies of vegetation changes in response to grazing and mowing: towards a use of more specific traits. Preslia 80(3): 245-253, 2008

Latitudinal variation in resistance and tolerance to herbivory in the perennial herb Lythrum salicaria is related to intensity of herbivory and plant phenology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 28(3): 576-589, 2015

Within-plant variation in defences in response to simulated herbivory in a semi-arid southern African savannah. African Journal of Ecology 53(4): 413-418, 2015

Olfactory response of a predatory mirid to herbivore induced plant volatiles: multiple herbivory vs. single herbivory. Journal of Applied Entomology 131(5): 326-332, 2007

The Evolution of Plant Functional Variation: Traits, Spectra, and Strategies. International Journal of Plant Sciences 164(3): 43-S164, 2003