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Functional diversity can facilitate the collapse of an undesirable ecosystem state
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  • Romana Limberger,
  • Uriah Daugaard,
  • Anubhav Gupta,
  • Rainer Krug,
  • Kimberley Lemmen,
  • Sofia van Moorsel,
  • Marcel Suleiman,
  • Debra Zuppinger-Dingley,
  • Owen Petchey
Romana Limberger
University of Zurich

Corresponding Author:romana.limberger@ieu.uzh.ch

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Uriah Daugaard
University of Zurich
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Anubhav Gupta
University of Zurich
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Rainer Krug
University of Zurich
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Kimberley Lemmen
University of Zurich
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Sofia van Moorsel
University of Zurich
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Marcel Suleiman
University of Zurich
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Debra Zuppinger-Dingley
University of Zurich
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Owen Petchey
University of Zurich
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Abstract

Biodiversity may increase ecosystem resilience. However, we have limited understanding if this holds true for ecosystems that respond to gradual environmental change with abrupt shifts to an alternative state. We used a mathematical model of anoxic-oxic regime shifts and explored how trait diversity in three groups of bacteria influences resilience. We found that trait diversity did not always increase resilience: greater diversity in two of the groups increased but in one group decreased resilience of their preferred ecosystem state. We also found that simultaneous trait diversity in multiple groups often led to reduced or erased diversity effects. Overall, our results suggest that higher diversity can increase resilience but can also promote collapse when diversity occurs in a functional group that negatively influences the state it occurs in. We propose this mechanism as a potential management approach to facilitate the recovery of a desired ecosystem state.
24 Nov 2022Submitted to Ecology Letters
25 Nov 2022Assigned to Editor
25 Nov 2022Submission Checks Completed
25 Nov 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
28 Nov 2022Reviewer(s) Assigned
22 Dec 2022Editorial Decision: Revise Major
01 Feb 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
01 Feb 20231st Revision Received
01 Feb 2023Assigned to Editor
01 Feb 2023Submission Checks Completed