Stable Isotope Trajectory Analysis ( SITA ): A new approach to quantify and visualize dynamics in stable isotope studies

Type Article
Date 2022-05
Language English
Author(s) Sturbois A.ORCID1, 2, 3, 4, Cucherousset J.5, de Cáceres M.ORCID6, Desroy NicolasORCID3, Riera P.7, Carpentier A8, Quillien Nolwenn9, Grall Jacques4, Espinasse B.10, Cherel Y.11, Schaal G.4
Affiliation(s) 1 : Vivarmor Nature, 18 C rue du Sabot Ploufragan, France
2 : Réserve naturelle nationale de la Baie de Saint‐Brieuc, site de l'étoile, 22120 Hillion, France
3 : Ifremer, Laboratoire Environnement et Ressources Bretagne nord, 38 rue du Port Blanc Dinard, France
4 : Laboratoire des Sciences de l'Environnement Marin (LEMAR), UMR 6539 CNRS/UBO/IRD/IFREMER BP 70, 29280 Plouzané ,France
5 : UMR 5174 EDB (Laboratoire Évolution & Diversité Biologique), CNRS, Université Paul Sabatier, IRD, 118 route de Narbonne Toulouse, France
6 : CREAF, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
7 : Sorbonne Université, CNRS, Station Biologique de Roscoff, UMR7144, Place Georges Teissier CS90074, 29688, Roscoff Cedex, France
8 : Université de Rennes 1, BOREA, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Sorbonne Université, Université de Caen Normandie, Université des Antilles, Campus de Beaulieu, Rennes, France
9 : France Energies Marines, 525 Avenue Alexis de Rochon Plouzané, France
10 : Department of Arctic and Marine Biology UiT The Arctic University of Norway Tromsø, Norway
11 : Centre d'Etudes Biologiques de Chizé, UMR 7372 du CNRS‐La Rochelle Université, Villiers‐en‐Bois, France
Source Ecological Monographs (0012-9615) (Wiley), 2022-05 , Vol. 92 , N. 2 , P. e1501 (26p.)
DOI 10.1002/ecm.1501
WOS© Times Cited 3
Keyword(s) changes, composition, dynamics, food web, functioning, spatial, stable isotope, structure, temporal, trajectories

Ecologists working with stable isotopes have to deal with complex datasets including temporal and spatial replication, which makes the analysis and the representation of patterns of change challenging, especially at high resolution. Due to the lack of a commonly accepted conceptual framework in stable isotope ecology, the analysis and the graphical representation of stable isotope spatial and temporal dynamics of stable isotope value at the organism or community scale remains in the past often descriptive and qualitative, impeding the quantitative detection of relevant functional patterns. The recent Community Trajectory Analysis (CTA) framework provides more explicit perspectives for the analysis and the visualization of ecological trajectories. Building on CTA, we developed the Stable Isotope Trajectory Analysis (SITA) framework, to analyse the geometric properties of stable isotope trajectories on n-dimensional (n ≥ 2) spaces of analysis defined analogously to the traditional multivariate spaces (Ω) used in community ecology. This approach provides new perspectives into the quantitative analysis of spatio-temporal trajectories in stable isotope spaces (Ωδ) and derived structural and functional dynamics (ΩƔ space). SITA allows the calculation of a set of trajectory metrics, based on either trajectory distances or directions, and new graphical representation solutions, both easily performable in a R environment. Here, we illustrated the use of our approach by reanalyzing previously published datasets from marine, terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. We highlight the insights provided by this new analytic framework at the individual, population, community and ecosystems levels, and discuss applications, limitations and development potential.

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Sturbois A., Cucherousset J., de Cáceres M., Desroy Nicolas, Riera P., Carpentier A, Quillien Nolwenn, Grall Jacques, Espinasse B., Cherel Y., Schaal G. (2022). Stable Isotope Trajectory Analysis ( SITA ): A new approach to quantify and visualize dynamics in stable isotope studies. Ecological Monographs, 92(2), e1501 (26p.). Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :