30 July, 2019

Not all interactions are positive: testing how antagonistic interactions impact the robustness of plant-pollinator networks

Network model simulations predict plant populations will be resilient when faced with pollinator extinctions. Importantly, these models are built on the assumption that all interactions in network are positive, potentially overestimating the resilience of plant-pollinator networks. A wide range of studies have shown that many flower visitors are actually ineffective at pollinating plant species they visit, and therefore can have negative consequences for plant reproduction. Here we use trinary (1,0, -1) interaction network simulations to understand how the assumption of all positive interactions impacts the predictions of resilience when plant communities are faced with pollinator species losses. 
Cartoon of  plant-pollinator network

Read the scientific publication in JPE.