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Data from: Combined effects of night warming and light pollution on predator-prey interactions


Miller, Colleen R. et al. (2017), Data from: Combined effects of night warming and light pollution on predator-prey interactions, Dryad, Dataset,


Interactions between multiple anthropogenic environmental changes can drive non-additive effects in ecological systems, and the non-additive effects can in turn be amplified or dampened by spatial covariation among environmental changes. We investigated the combined effects of night-time warming and light pollution on pea aphids and two predatory ladybeetle species. As expected, neither night-time warming nor light pollution changed the suppression of aphids by the ladybeetle species that forages effectively in darkness. However, for the more-visual predator, warming and light had non-additive effects in which together they caused much lower aphid abundances. These results are particularly relevant for agriculture near urban areas that experience both light pollution and warming from urban heat islands. Because warming and light pollution can have non-additive effects, predicting their possible combined consequences over broad spatial scales requires knowing how they co-occur. We found that night-time temperature change since 1949 covaried positively with light pollution, which has the potential to increase their non-additive effects on pea aphid control by 70% in US alfalfa. Our results highlight the importance of non-additive effects of multiple environmental factors on species and food webs, especially when these factors co-occur.

Usage Notes


National Science Foundation, Award: Dimensions 1240804