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Host diversity begets parasite diversity: Bird final hosts and trematodes in snail intermediate hosts

Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

By:
and
DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2005.3070

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Abstract

An unappreciated facet of biodiversity is that rich communities and high abundance may foster parasitism. For parasites that sequentially use different host species throughout complex life cycles, parasite diversity and abundance in 'downstream' hosts should logically increase with the diversity and abundance of 'upstream' hosts (which carry the preceding stages of parasites). Surprisingly, this logical assumption has little empirical support, especially regarding metazoan parasites. Few studies have attempted direct tests of this idea and most have lacked the appropriate scale of investigation. In two different studies, we used time-lapse videography to quantify birds at fine spatial scales, and then related bird communities to larval trematode communities in snail populations sampled at the same small spatial scales. Species richness, species heterogeneity and abundance of final host birds were positively correlated with species richness, species heterogeneity and abundance of trematodes in host snails. Such community-level interactions have rarely been demonstrated and have implications for community theory, epidemiological theory and ecosystem management. ?? 2005 The Royal Society.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Host diversity begets parasite diversity: Bird final hosts and trematodes in snail intermediate hosts
Series title:
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
DOI:
10.1098/rspb.2005.3070
Volume
272
Issue:
1567
Year Published:
2005
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
First page:
1059
Last page:
1066