Consistent stabilizing effects of plant diversity across spatial scales and climatic gradients

Maowei Liang, Benjamin Baiser, Lauren M. Hallett, Yann Hautier, Lin Jiang, Michel Loreau, Sydne Record, Eric R. Sokol, Phoebe L. Zarnetske, Shaopeng Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Biodiversity has widely been documented to enhance local community stability but whether such stabilizing effects of biodiversity extend to broader scales remains elusive. Here, we investigated the relationships between biodiversity and community stability in natural plant communities from quadrat (1 m2) to plot (400 m2) and regional (5−214 km2) scales and across broad climatic conditions, using an extensive plant community dataset from the National Ecological Observatory Network. We found that plant diversity provided consistent stabilizing effects on total community abundance across three nested spatial scales and climatic gradients. The strength of the stabilizing effects of biodiversity increased modestly with spatial scale and decreased as precipitation seasonality increased. Our findings illustrate the generality of diversity–stability theory across scales and climatic gradients, which provides a robust framework for understanding ecosystem responses to biodiversity and climate changes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1669-1675
Number of pages7
JournalNature Ecology and Evolution
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2022
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited.


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