MRE Symonds, L Christidis, CN Johnson (2006) Latitudinal gradients in abundance, and the causes of rarity in the tropics: a test using Australian honeyeaters (Aves: Meliphagidae). Oecologia 149: 406-417.
What’s it about?
We examined why the abundance of species in the tropics appears to be lower than in temperate regions – a finding we uncovered for honeyeaters in Symonds and Johnson (2006b). We attempted to investigate climate and reproductive output as predictors of abudance, but neither served as a better predictor of abundance than latitude. We tentatively suggested that perhaps evolutionary age of species was playing a role in determining patterns of abundance.
What’s the story behind it?
Well, aside for checking out Symonds and Johnson (2006a), the rest of the story here is the thing about evolutionary age. This was originally the aim of the project that I set out to do with Chris Johnson but never was able to complete. I hope one day to do so, if I can find a willing student.