Do Biological Tradeoffs Promote Coexistence? 

Buffalo.JPG

A classic question in ecology is whether tradeoffs between the ability to compete for resources and the ability to defend oneself against enemies helps to maintain species coexistence. Our meta-analysis suggests that this tradeoff is not readily identified in ecological systems.  

Viola, D., E. Mordecai, A. Jaramillo, S. Sistla, L. Albertson, J. Gosnell, B. Cardinale, J. Levine. Competition-defense tradeoffs and the maintenance of plant diversity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107 (40): 17217 – 17222.