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Resource Utilization, Overlap and Temporal Community Dynamics: A Null Model Analysis of an Epiphytic Chironomid Community
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 55, No. 2 (Jun., 1986), pp. 491-506
Published by: British Ecological Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4733
Page Count: 16
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(1) Temporal patterns in resource utilization in a community of epiphytic chironomid larvae were investigated for a year in a small river in eastern England. (2) Null resource utilization models were constructed by Monte Carlo simulations and used for evaluating the significance of the observed temporal and dietary overlap amongst nine chironomid species. (3) The observed mean overlap in temporal resource utilization in this community was significantly larger than expected from null models. Temporal pattern in community dynamics, especially in terms of production, was strongly influenced by diatom abundance. (4) Dietary overlap was significantly larger than expected from a null model in some months, due mainly to limited choice of food and lack of selective feeding by different species of chironomids. No significant dietary partitioning (observed overlap significantly smaller than expected in the model) occurred throughout the year. (5) The results indicate that competition is not an important factor in the temporal organization of the epiphytic chironomid community. (6) The relationship between overlap and resource availability was discussed in a wider context.
Journal of Animal Ecology © 1986 British Ecological Society