Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Trends in Ecology and Evolution

Volume

22

Publisher

Elsevier

Publication Date

2007

First Page

323

Last Page

330

Abstract

Body size is perhaps the most fundamental property of an organism and is related to many biological traits, including abundance. The relationship between abundance and body size has received much attention, both to quantify the form of the relationship and to understand the processes that generate it. However, progress is impeded by the underappreciated fact that there are four distinct, but inter-related, relationships between size and abundance that are often confused in the literature. Here, we review and distinguish between these four patterns, and discuss the linkages between them. We argue that a synthetic understanding of size and abundance relationships will result from more detailed analysis of individual patterns and from careful consideration of how and why the patterns are related to one another.

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