OLM 10.7. Coexistence in fluctuating environments: relative nonlinearity and storage effect
The effect of environmental fluctuations on competitive exclusion and coexistence is an essential problem of ecology. The main point made by Chesson & Huntly (1997) was that fluctuations do not alleviate competitive exclusion and allow for coexistence universally. Instead, there are specific mechanisms through which environmental fluctuations can help dissimilar species to coexist. Chesson (1994) classified these mechanisms into two classes: “relative nonlinearity” and the “storage effect”. The topic was discussed shortly in Ch7.4.1 and Tbox10.4. Here we elaborate on it more thoroughly.