Université de Fribourg

Phylogeny versus body size as determinants of food web structure

Naisbit, Russell E. ; Rohr, Rudolf P. ; Rossberg, Axel G. ; Kehrli, Patrik ; Bersier, Louis-Félix

In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 2012, p. -

Food webs are the complex networks of trophic interactions that stoke the metabolic fires of life. To understand what structures these interactions in natural communities, ecologists have developed simple models to capture their main architectural features. However, apparently realistic food webs can be generated by models invoking either predator–prey body-size hierarchies or evolutionary...

Université de Fribourg

Modeling food webs: exploring unexplained structure using latent traits

Rohr, Rudolf Philippe ; Scherer, Heike ; Kehrli, Patrik ; Mazza, Christian ; Bersier, Louis-Félix

In: The American Naturalist, 2010, vol. 176, no. 2, p. 170-177

Several stochastic models have tried to capture the architecture of food webs. This approach is interesting, but it is limited by the fact that different assumptions can yield similar results. To overcome this limitation, we develop a purely statistical approach. Body size in terms of an optimal ratio between prey and predator is used as explanatory variable. In 12 observed food webs, this model...