How are the life history strategies of Antarctic terrestrial invertebrates influenced by extreme environmental conditions?
1. Features of life history strategies of Antarctic terrestrial invertebrates are reviewed and compared with the predictions of two widely-used general life history models.
2. Many features observed are consistent with the predictions of “adversity-” or “stress-selected” life histories, although “ruderal” characteristics are also observed.
3. Many features are plesiotypic for the taxonomic groups concerned, suggesting a lack of evolved adaptations within the Antarctic biota.
4. A large degree of flexibility is found in the life histories; this flexibility itself may allow passage of environmentally-imposed selective filters limiting colonisation and development in isolated and extreme terrestrial habitats.
5. In general, Antarctic terrestrial invertebrates may be regarded as pre-adapted for survival of the various stresses imposed by their extreme environment.
Authors: Convey, Peter ORCID record for Peter Convey