scispace - formally typeset
Search or ask a question
Topic

Ecological niche

About: Ecological niche is a research topic. Over the lifetime, 5594 publications have been published within this topic receiving 253477 citations. The topic is also known as: niche & microhabitat.


Papers
More filters
Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is asserted that community ecology should return to an emphasis on four themes that are tied together by a two-step process: how the fundamental niche is governed by functional traits within the context of abiotic environmental gradients; and how the interaction between traits and fundamental niches maps onto the realized niche in the context a biotic interaction milieu.
Abstract: There is considerable debate about whether community ecology will ever produce general principles. We suggest here that this can be achieved but that community ecology has lost its way by focusing on pairwise species interactions independent of the environment. We assert that community ecology should return to an emphasis on four themes that are tied together by a two-step process: how the fundamental niche is governed by functional traits within the context of abiotic environmental gradients; and how the interaction between traits and fundamental niches maps onto the realized niche in the context of a biotic interaction milieu. We suggest this approach can create a more quantitative and predictive science that can more readily address issues of global change.

3,715 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
05 Jul 1974-Science
TL;DR: To conclude with a list of questions appropriate for studies of resource partitioning, questions this article has related to the theory in a preliminary way.
Abstract: To understand resource partitioning, essentially a community phenomenon, we require a holistic theory that draws upon models at the individual and population level. Yet some investigators are still content mainly to document differences between species, a procedure of only limited interest. Therefore, it may be useful to conclude with a list of questions appropriate for studies of resource partitioning, questions this article has related to the theory in a preliminary way. 1) What is the mechanism of competition? What is the relative importance of predation? Are differences likely to be caused by pressures toward reproductive isolation? 2) Are niches (utilizations) regularly spaced along a single dimension? 3) How many dimensions are important, and is there a tendency for more dimensions to be added as species number increases? 4) Is dimensional separation complementary? 5) Which dimensions are utilized, how do they rank in importance, and why? How do particular dimensions change in rank as species nuimber increases? 6) What is the relation of dimensional separation to difference in phenotypic indicators? To what extent does the functional relation of phenotype to resource characteristics constrain partitioning? 7) What is the distance between mean position of niches, what is the niche standard deviation, and what is the ratio of the two? What is the niche shape?

3,626 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The evolution of "niche breadth" was a more popular topic in the evolutionary ecological literature of the 1960s and 1970s than it has been recently (109, 118, 120, 134, 155, 156) as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: The evolution of "niche breadth," or "niche width," was a more popular topic in the evolutionary ecological literature of the 1960s and 1970s than it has been recently (109, 118, 120, 134, 155, 156). This review summarizes current hypotheses on the evolution of specialization and generalization and suggests areas in which future research might be rewarding. The topic is so broad that every area of biology bears on it. We cannot hope to offer an exhaustive review of evidence and in particular have slighted much of the ecological literature to emphasize genetic and evolutionary perspectives. We limit our discussion almost entirely to animals. We adopt Hutchinson's (86) representation of a population's ecological niche as an n-dimensional hypervolume, the axes of which are environmental variables or resources. Along each of these, the population displays a wide or narrow tolerance or pattern of utilization, relative to other populations or species. Specialization and generalization must be defined with reference to particular axes (e.g. temperature, range of food particle sizes). Brown (9) suggests that niche breadth along different axes is positively correlated and that this explains positive correlations across species between local abundance and breadth of geographic range. Multidimensional specialization might be expected if species arise in localized regions that differ in several ecological respects from those occupied by parent species. Cody (20), however, suggested that the breadth of habitat is negatively correlated with diet breadth among certain bird species. In practice, quantitative measurement of niche breadth can be difficult (22,

2,108 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This work describes how niche conservatism in climatic tolerances may limit geographic range expansion and how this one type of niche conservatism may be important in allopatric speciation and the spread of invasive, human-introduced species.
Abstract: ▪ Abstract Niche conservatism is the tendency of species to retain ancestral ecological characteristics. In the recent literature, a debate has emerged as to whether niches are conserved. We suggest that simply testing whether niches are conserved is not by itself particularly helpful or interesting and that a more useful focus is on the patterns that niche conservatism may (or may not) create. We focus specifically on how niche conservatism in climatic tolerances may limit geographic range expansion and how this one type of niche conservatism may be important in (a) allopatric speciation, (b) historical biogeography, (c) patterns of species richness, (d) community structure, (e) the spread of invasive, human-introduced species, (f) responses of species to global climate change, and (g) human history, from 13,000 years ago to the present. We describe how these effects of niche conservatism can be examined with new tools for ecological niche modeling.

2,039 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: New methods for quantifying niche overlap that rely on a traditional ecological measure and a metric from mathematical statistics are developed and suggest various randomization tests that may prove useful in other areas of ecology and evolutionary biology.
Abstract: Environmental niche models, which are generated by combining species occurrence data with environmental GIS data layers, are increasingly used to answer fundamental questions about niche evolution, speciation, and the accumulation of ecological diversity within clades. The question of whether environmental niches are conserved over evolutionary time scales has attracted considerable attention, but often produced conflicting conclusions. This conflict, however, may result from differences in how niche similarity is measured and the specific null hypothesis being tested. We develop new methods for quantifying niche overlap that rely on a traditional ecological measure and a metric from mathematical statistics. We reexamine a classic study of niche conservatism between sister species in several groups of Mexican animals, and, for the first time, address alternative definitions of "niche conservatism" within a single framework using consistent methods. As expected, we find that environmental niches of sister species are more similar than expected under three distinct null hypotheses, but that they are rarely identical. We demonstrate how our measures can be used in phylogenetic comparative analyses by reexamining niche divergence in an adaptive radiation of Cuban anoles. Our results show that environmental niche overlap is closely tied to geographic overlap, but not to phylogenetic distances, suggesting that niche conservatism has not constrained local communities in this group to consist of closely related species. We suggest various randomization tests that may prove useful in other areas of ecology and evolutionary biology.

1,993 citations


Network Information
Related Topics (5)
Biological dispersal
30K papers, 1.2M citations
89% related
Biodiversity
44.8K papers, 1.9M citations
89% related
Habitat
25.2K papers, 825.7K citations
88% related
Ecosystem
25.4K papers, 1.2M citations
88% related
Species diversity
32.2K papers, 1.2M citations
87% related
Performance
Metrics
No. of papers in the topic in previous years
YearPapers
2023447
2022922
2021483
2020429
2019401
2018359