Low multifunctional redundancy of soil fungal diversity at multiple scales

Akira S. Mori, Forest Isbell, Saori Fujii, Kobayashi Makoto, Shunsuke Matsuoka, Takashi Osono

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Theory suggests that biodiversity might help sustain multiple ecosystem functions. To evaluate possible biodiversity-multifunctionality relationships in a natural setting, we considered different spatial scales of diversity metrics for soil fungi in the northern forests of Japan. We found that multifunctionality increased with increasing local species richness, suggesting a limited degree of multifunctional redundancy. This diversity-multifunctionality relationship was independent of the compositional uniqueness of each community. However, we still found the importance of community composition, because there was a positive correlation between community dissimilarity and multifunctional dissimilarity across the landscape. This result suggests that functional redundancy can further decrease when spatial variations in identities of both species and functions are simultaneously considered at larger spatial scales. We speculate that different scales of diversity could provide multiple levels of insurance against the loss of functioning if high-levels of local species diversity and compositional variation across locations are both maintained. Alternatively, making species assemblages depauperate may result in the loss of multifunctionality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-259
Number of pages11
JournalEcology Letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.


  • Belowground processes
  • Biodiversity-ecosystem functioning
  • Compositional characteristics
  • Ecosystem multifunctionality
  • Forest biodiversity
  • Functional redundancy
  • Multifunctional dissimilarity
  • Scale dependency
  • Species importance

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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