Constant connectance in community food webs

N. D. Martinez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

281 Scopus citations


The constant connectance hypothesis states that among community food webs, trophic links increase approximately as the square of the number of functionally distinct or "trophic' species. This hypothesis is corroborated by analysis of 175 community food webs (2-93 trophic species), which shows that the exponent of the link-species relationship is approximately two. This scaling contradicts the widely accepted link-species scaling law, which asserts that links increase linearly with the number of species and that the link- species exponent is one. Large food webs have many more links and much longer food chains than previously suggested. -from Author

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1208-1218
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Naturalist
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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