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Comment on ``Asymmetric Coevolutionary Networks Facilitate
 

Summary: Comment on ``Asymmetric
Coevolutionary Networks Facilitate
Biodiversity Maintenance''
J. Nathaniel Holland,1
* Toshinori Okuyama,1
Donald L. DeAngelis2
Bascompte et al. (Reports, 21 April 2006, p. 431) used network asymmetries to explain
mathematical conditions necessary for stability in historic models of mutualism. The Lotka-Volterra
equations they used artificially created conditions in which some factor, such as asymmetric
interaction strengths, is necessary for community coexistence. We show that a more realistic
model incorporating nonlinear functional responses requires no such condition and is
consistent with their data.
M
utualism was once thought to be in-
herently unstable due to unrealistic
assumptions of now historic Lotka-
Volterra theory. Such models (1, 2) entail chang-
ing negative signs of Lotka-Volterra competition
equations to positive signs to reflect the benefits
of mutualism. These models showed that

  

Source: Azevedo, Ricardo - Department of Biology and Biochemistry, University of Houston
Holland, J. Nathaniel - Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice University

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine; Environmental Sciences and Ecology