Data from: Scale-dependent responses of pollination and seed dispersal mutualisms in a habitat transformation scenario
Fontúrbel, Francisco E.; Jordano, Pedro; Medel, Rodrigo (2016), Data from: Scale-dependent responses of pollination and seed dispersal mutualisms in a habitat transformation scenario, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.11385
Transformed habitats are the result of deliberate replacement of native species by an exotic monoculture, involving changes in biotic and abiotic conditions. Despite this, transformed habitats are becoming more common and constitute a major biodiversity change driver, little is known about the scale-dependent responses of plant-animal mutualisms. Aiming to test the multi-scale responses of pollination and seed dispersal in a habitat transformation scenario, we examined a gradient of native and transformed habitats at three spatial scales (0-50, 50-100, and 100-250 m), focused on a highly-specialized mutualistic system composed of a hemiparasitic mistletoe (Tristerix corymbosus) that is almost exclusively pollinated by a hummingbird (Sephanoides sephaniodes) and dispersed by an arboreal marsupial (Dromiciops gliroides). Even though mistletoes were found along the gradient, they were more abundant and more densely aggregated when the transformed habitat was dominant. Disperser and pollinator activity also increased as the transformed habitat become dominant, at the scale of 0-50 m and 50-100 m, respectively. Furthermore, crop size and disperser activity co-varied at broad and intermediate scales, whereas recruitment co-varied at intermediate and fine scales. Moreover, disperser activity and the number of seedlings were spatially associated, stressing D. gliroides’ role in the recruitment of the mistletoe. Synthesis: This highly specialized mutualistic system seems to be responding positively to the habitat structure modifications associated with Eucalyptus plantations. However, the actual costs (e.g., reduced gene flow, increased herbivory) in these transformed habitats are yet to be assessed.