Assembly of ecological communities: Lessons from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands
August 8 @ 12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
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A talk by Dr. Harikrishna Surendran, Consultant Scientist, Metastring Foundation, Bangalore
The concept of ecological niche has been integral to much of ecology in the last century. Theories of biodiversity have for the most part attempted to explain the existence of multiple species in ecological communities through the lens of niche utilization, overlap, competition, and division of resources. Deriving from niche theory, a much debated phenomenon in island ecology has been whether the presence of similar species in a community (species co-occurrence) is affected by interspecific interactions such as competition for resources. However, evidence from studies on ecological communities in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands suggests that competition for resources is not a major driving force behind the co-occurrence of species in islands. This was true for other well-known ecological patterns as well. Rather, the answers to the questions of community assembly seem to be in the evolutionary history of the organisms in relation to geographic factors.
About the Speaker:
Dr. Harikrishna Surendran is an ecologist and herpetologist. He has been involved in various wildlife and ecological studies in India for more than 12 years, primarily through the Wildlife Institute of India. Between 2008 and 2014, much of his time was spent in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, on studies of herpetofauna of these islands. Currently, he is a consultant scientist with the biodiversity informatics platform India Biodiversity Portal.