Skip to Main Content
Consumer-resource stoichiometry in detritus-based streamsAuthor(s): Wyatt F. Cross; Jonathan P. Benstead; Amy D. Rosemond; J. Bruce Wallace
Source: Ecology Letters. 6: 721-732
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: View PDF (207 KB)
DescriptionStoichiometric relationships between consumers and resources in detritus-based ecosystems have received little attention, despite the importance of detritus in most food webs. We analysed carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) content of invertebrate consumers, and basal food resources in two forested headwater streams (one reference and the other nutrient-enriched). We found large elemental imbalances between consumers and food resources compared with living plant-based systems, particularly in regard to P content, which were reduced with enrichment. Enrichment significantly increased nutrient content of food resources (consistent with uptake of N and P by detritus-associated microbes). P content of some invertebrates also increased in the enriched vs. reference stream, suggesting deviation from strict homeostasis. Nutrient content varied significantly among invertebrate functional feeding groups, orders and, to some extent, size classes. Future application of stoichiometric theory to detritus-based systems should consider the potential for relatively large consumer-resource elemental imbalances and P storage by insect consumers.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationCross, Wyatt F.; Benstead, Jonathan P.; Rosemond, Amy D.; Wallace, J. Bruce. 2003. Consumer-resource stoichiometry in detritus-based streams. Ecology Letters. 6: 721-732
KeywordsCarbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, detritus, ecological stoichiometry, experimental enrichment, food web, insect, invertebrate, stream
- Whole-system nutrient enrichment increases secondary production in a detritus-based ecosystem
- Convergence of detrital stoichiometry predicts thresholds of nutrient-stimulated breakdown in streams
- Larval salamander growth responds to enrichment of a nutrient poor headwater stream
XML: View XML