Data from: Connectivity increases trophic subsidies in fragmented landscapes
Hawn, Christine L.; Herrmann, John D.; Griffin, Sean R.; Haddad, Nick M. (2019), Data from: Connectivity increases trophic subsidies in fragmented landscapes, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.27v6086
Landscape corridors mitigate the negative effects of habitat fragmentation by increasing dispersal. Corridors also increase biodiversity in connected habitat fragments, suggestive of metacommunity dynamics. What is unknown in this case is the mechanisms through which metacommunity dynamics act. Working in a large-scale fragmentation experiment, we tested the effect of corridors on the movement of prey species and subsequent effects on predator nutrition (which we call trophic subsidies). We enriched plants of central patches with 15N, then measured 15N in green lynx spiders, the most abundant insect predator, in patches that were either connected to or isolated from the enriched patch. We found that corridors increased prey movement, as they increased spider 15N by 40% in connected patches. Corridors also improved spider body condition, increasing nitrogen relative to carbon. We suggest a novel mechanism, trophic subsidies, through which corridors may increase the stability or size of populations in connected landscapes.
National Science Foundation, Award: DEB - 1050361
South Eastern United States