Long-Term Effects of Elevated CO2 on Plant-Herbivore Interactions
Stiling, P., Moon, D., Rossi, A., Forkner, R., Hungate, B.A., Day, F.P., Schroeder, R.E. and Drake, B. 2013. Direct and legacy effects of long-term elevated CO2 on fine root growth and plant-insect interactions. New Phytologist 200: 788-795.
Stiling et al. report that across the years "elevated CO2 reduced the densities of all herbivore-damaged leaves, which included damage produced by leaf miners, leaf tiers, leaf chewers and leaf gallers, on all host plant species, including the nitrogen-fixing legume, Galactia," while additionally citing the paper of Stiling et al. (2009) in this regard. And they also write that their results "are similar to those of other studies, most of which have also found reductions in insect herbivory under elevated CO2 (reviewed in Lincoln et al., 1993; Watt et al., 1995; Bezemer and Jones, 1998; Hunter, 2001; Whittaker, 2001; Stiling and Cornelissen, 2007; Lindroth, 2010; Robinson et al., 2012)."
In the eternal war between earth's plants and the herbivorous insects that feed upon them, the ongoing increase in the atmosphere's CO2 concentration is proving to be a powerful secret weapon, which is helping the planet's vegetation to sustain the impressive worldwide greening of the earth that continues apace, growing ever stronger year by year.
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