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Ecosystem maturity and performance

January 1, 2005

Arising from: Bai, Y., Han, X., Wu, J., Chen, Z. & Li, L. Nature, 431, 181–184 (2004); see also communication from Wang et al.; Bai, Y., Han, X., Wu, J., Chen, Z. & Li, L. reply.The effect of maturity, or successional stage, on ecosystem performance (measured as productivity or stability, for example) is important for both basic ecology and ecosystem management. On the basis of the results of a long-term study of two different plant communities at two sites in the Inner Mongolia grassland1, Bai et al. claim that these communities simultaneously achieve high species richness, productivity and ecosystem stability at the late successional stage1. However, I question their interpretation of the data and suggest that this claim is undermined by evidence from other empirical and theoretical studies.

Publication Year 2005
Title Ecosystem maturity and performance
DOI 10.1038/nature03583
Authors Q. Guo
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Nature
Index ID 1001755
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center