Journal Article Florivory indirectly decreases the plant reproductive output through changes in pollinator attraction

Tsuji, Kaoru  ,  Ohgushi, Takayuki

8 ( 5 )  , pp.2993 - 3001 , 2018-03-05 , John Wiley and Sons Ltd
Species often interact indirectly with each other via their traits. There is increasing appreciation of trait‐mediated indirect effects linking multiple interactions. Flowers interact with both pollinators and floral herbivores, and the flower‐pollinator interaction may be modified by indirect effects of floral herbivores (i.e., florivores) on flower traits such as flower size attracting pollinators. To explore whether flower size affects the flower‐pollinator interaction, we used Eurya japonica flowers. We examined whether artificial florivory decreased fruit and seed production, and also whether flower size affected florivory and the number of floral visitors. The petal removal treatment (i.e., artificial florivory) showed approximately 50% reduction in both fruit and seed set in natural pollination but not in artificial pollination. Furthermore, flower size increased the number of floral visitors, although it did not affect the frequency of florivory. Our results demonstrate that petal removal indirectly decreased 75% of female reproductive output via decreased flower visits by pollinators and that flower size mediated indirect interactions between florivory and floral visitors.

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