Nestedness and Assembly Rules

Martin L. Cody

in Plants on Islands

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780520247291
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520932722 | DOI:
Nestedness and Assembly Rules

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This chapter discusses the measurement and meaning of nestedness in species-by-sites matrices (SSMs) and SSM analysis of assembly rules. Species occurrences over a range of sites are represented in the form of a species-by-sites matrix. SSM databases are the standard format for many sorts of ecological and biogeographical studies. If the sites are islands spanning a range of sizes, topographies, and positions relative to colonization sources, SSMs will rank islands by those properties associated with high species richness, namely, by decreasing size and elevation, and increasing isolation. Often, this process produces a matrix with most entries concentrated in the upper-left triangle, a property known as nestedness. Assembly rules are algorithms that use abiotic and biotic factors to predict accurately on which islands a given species, or assemblage of species, will occur.

Keywords: nestedness; SSMs; assembly rules; species richness; isolation

Chapter.  15537 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

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