Pelagic Nutrient Cycles: Herbivores as Sources and Sinks

Series: Ecological Studies (v.129)

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An analysis of the interactions between pelagic food web processes and element cycling in lakes. While some findings are examined in terms of classical concepts from the ecological theory of predator-prey systems, special emphasis is placed on exploring how stoichiometric relationships between primary producers and herbivores influence the stability and persistence of planktonic food webs. The author develops simple dynamic models of the cycling of mineral nutrients through plankton algae and grazers, and then goes on to explore them both analytically and numerically. The results thus obtained are of great interest to both theoretical and experimental ecologists. Moreover, the models themselves are of immense practical use in the area of lake management.