Canadian Forest Service Publications

The ecology of predispersal insect herbivory on tree reproductive structures in natural forest ecosystems. 2019. Boivin, T.; Doublet, V.; Candau, J.-N. Insect Science 26(2):182-198.

Year: 2019

Issued by: Great Lakes Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 39149

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.1111/1744-7917.12549

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Plain Language Summary

Plant–insect interactions are key model systems to assess how some species affect the distribution, the abundance, and the evolution of others. Tree reproductive structures represent a critical resource for many insect species, which can be likely drivers of demography, spatial distribution, and trait diversification of plants. In this review, we present the ecological implications of predispersal herbivory on tree reproductive structures by insects (PIHR) in forest ecosystems. Both insect's and tree's perspectives are addressed with an emphasis on how spatiotemporal variation and unpredictability in seed availability can shape such particular plant–animal interactions. We suggest that spatially explicit and mechanistic approaches of the interactions between individual tree fecundity and insect dynamics will clarify predictions of the demogenetic implications of PIHR in tree populations. In a global change context, further experimental and theoretical contributions to the likelihood of life‐cycle disruptions between plants and their specialized herbivores, and to how these changes may generate novel dynamic patterns in each partner of the interaction are increasingly critical.