Perspective

Disentangling the Web of Life

Science  24 Jul 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5939, pp. 416-419
DOI: 10.1126/science.1170749

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Abstract

Biodiversity research typically focuses on species richness and has often neglected interactions, either by assuming that such interactions are homogeneously distributed or by addressing only the interactions between a pair of species or a few species at a time. In contrast, a network approach provides a powerful representation of the ecological interactions among species and highlights their global interdependence. Understanding how the responses of pairwise interactions scale to entire assemblages remains one of the great challenges that must be met as society faces global ecosystem change.

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