NEPTUNE SEMINAR SERIES 30 NOV
Neptune Seminar Series | Aldo Barreiro | 30 November | 12h
Allelopathy as a bottom-up mechanism driving phytoplankton diversity.
Aldo Barreiro (CIIMAR)
The paradoxical diversity of phytoplanktonic communities has been a long-standing topic of research and debate in theoretical and experimental ecology. This paradox was pointed up by Hutchinson (1961) when he noted the high diversity found in phytoplankton assemblages considering the low number of shared resources that are potentially limiting in their relatively highly isotropic environment. This contradicts resource competition theory. Since, them, many theoretical and experimental mechanisms where proposed to explain this unexpectedly high diversity, contributing over decades to major advances in ecological theory. Among other mechanisms, allelopathy has been proposed, in theoretical works, as a driver of this paradoxically high diversity. In the present research, the effect of allelopathy in phytoplankton diversity is addressed combining theory and experiments, and scaling from simple artificial communities composed by species up to real communities maintained in the laboratory.