Lafferty et al. (2006)

General information

The study was conducted in Carpinteria Salt Marsh Reserve, Carpinteria, Santa Barbara County, California. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of parasites on food-web topology. The results are reported in detail in Lafferty et al (in press) with other publications forthcoming which examine connectance, chain length, vulnerability, etc. This publication also details how taxa and links were selected for inclusion and provides additional information on the species lists.

Data type

The matrix breaks down into 4 subwebs: predator-prey, parasite-host, predator-parasite and parasite-parasite. Links are binary (presence or absence of interspecific interactions), but coded by type of trophic interaction and certainty. The links are from a combination of published reports, direct observations, and logical, but presumed interactions. A key is included as a text box in the matrix. The web is being updated regularly as new information is obtained.


Lafferty, K. D., Dobson, A. P. & Kuris, A. M. (2006a) Parasites dominate food web links. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Updated reference
Lafferty, K. D., Hechinger, R. F., Shaw, J. C., Whitney, K. L. & Kuris, A. M. (2006b) Food webs and parasites in a salt marsh ecosystem. In Disease ecology: community structure and pathogen dynamics (ed. S. Collinge & C. Ray), pp. 119-134. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Data files

Text format: interaction matrix (no species names)

Excel format: interaction matrix (includes species lists)

Explanation of data format: readme file

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