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Ecol Evol ; 11(9): 4182-4192, 2021 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33976802


Climate change will profoundly alter the physiology and ecology of plants, insect herbivores, and their natural enemies, resulting in strong effects on multitrophic interactions. Yet, manipulative studies that investigate the direct combined impacts of changes in CO2, temperature, and precipitation on the third trophic level remain rare. Here, we assessed how exposure to elevated CO2, increased temperature, and decreased precipitation directly affect the performance and predation success of species from four major groups of herbivore natural enemies: an entomopathogenic nematode, a wolf spider, a ladybug, and a parasitoid wasp. A four-day exposure to future climatic conditions (RCP 8.5), entailing a 28% decrease in precipitation, a 3.4°C raise in temperature, and a 400 ppm increase in CO2 levels, slightly reduced the survival of entomopathogenic nematodes, but had no effect on the survival of other species. Predation success was not negatively affected in any of the tested species, but it was even increased for wolf spiders and entomopathogenic nematodes. Factorial manipulation of climate variables revealed a positive effect of reduced soil moisture on nematode infectivity, but not of increased temperature or elevated CO2. These results suggest that natural enemies of herbivores may be well adapted to short-term changes in climatic conditions. These findings provide mechanistic insights that will inform future efforts to disentangle the complex interplay of biotic and abiotic factors that drive climate-dependent changes in multitrophic interaction networks.

Proc Biol Sci ; 287(1921): 20192930, 2020 02 26.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32097589


A plant's offspring may escape unfavourable local conditions through seed dispersal. Whether plants use this strategy to escape insect herbivores is not well understood. Here, we explore how different dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg.) populations, including diploid outcrossers and triploid apomicts, modify seed dispersal in response to root herbivore attack by their main root-feeding natural enemy, the larvae of the common cockchafer Melolontha melolontha. In a manipulative field experiment, root herbivore attack increased seed dispersal potential through a reduction in seed weight in populations that evolved under high root herbivore pressure, but not in populations that evolved under low pressure. This increase in dispersal potential was independent of plant cytotype, but associated with a reduction in germination rate, suggesting that adapted dandelions trade dispersal for establishment upon attack by root herbivores. Analysis of vegetative growth parameters suggested that the increased dispersal capacity was not the result of stress flowering. In summary, these results suggest that root herbivory selects for an induced increase in dispersal ability in response to herbivore attack. Induced seed dispersal may be a strategy that allows adapted plants to escape from herbivores.

Besouros/fisiologia , Germinação , Herbivoria , Taraxacum/fisiologia , Animais
J Chem Ecol ; 45(7): 638-648, 2019 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31227972


Although the production of phytohormones has been commonly associated with production of plant defence and stress-related traits, few studies have simultaneously investigated this phenomenon across several plant species that grow along large-scale ecological gradients. To address these knowledge gaps, we performed a common garden experiment with six Cardamine species, which collectively encompass an elevational gradient of 2000 m. We quantified constitutive and Pieris brassicae caterpillars-induced phytohormones and chemical defences in leaves. We found a correlated expression of phytohormone production and the subsequent induction of chemical defences, and this correlated expression reduced herbivore performance. Furthermore, we found that abiotic conditions associated with the optimal elevation range of each species influenced the production of phytohormones and chemical defences, as well as plant growth and productivity. In particular, we found that plant species adapted to milder abiotic conditions at low elevations grew faster, were more productive and produced greater levels of chemical defences. In contrast, plant species adapted to harsher abiotic conditions at high elevations tended to produce greater levels of defence-related oxylipins. Overall, these findings highlight the importance of disentangling the role of phytohormones in mediating plant adaptations to shifting biotic and abiotic conditions.

Cardamine/química , Glucosinolatos/química , Himenópteros/fisiologia , Reguladores de Crescimento de Plantas/química , Animais , Cardamine/metabolismo , Cromatografia Líquida de Alta Pressão , Glucosinolatos/farmacologia , Herbivoria , Interações Hospedeiro-Parasita/efeitos dos fármacos , Himenópteros/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Larva/efeitos dos fármacos , Larva/fisiologia , Reguladores de Crescimento de Plantas/farmacologia , Folhas de Planta/química , Folhas de Planta/metabolismo , Espectrometria de Massas em Tandem