Rapid turnover and edge effects in dung beetle assemblages (Scarabaeidae) at a Bolivian Neotropical forest-savanna ecotone

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2003
Authors:S. Spector, Ayzama S.
Date Published:Sep
Keywords:beta diversity, Bolivia, boundaries, central amazonia, COLEOPTERA, communities, conservation, dung beetles, dynamics, ecotone, edge, fragmented forests, gradients, patterns, responses, savanna, tropical forest

Habitat fragmentation and the widespread creation of habitat edges have recently stimulated interest in assessing the effects of ecotones on biodiversity. Ecotones, natural or anthropogenic, can greatly affect faunal movement, population dynamics, species interactions, and community structure. Few data exist, however, on insect community response to forest-savanna ecotones, a natural analog to anthropogenically cleared areas adjacent to forest. In this study, the abundance, total biomass, average individual biomass, and distribution of scarabaeine dung beetles were examined at a sharp tropical evergreen forest-savanna ecotone in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. The abundance, total biomass, and average individual biomass of dung beetles varied significantly across the forest, edge, and savanna habitats. Species richness (S-obs) also varied significantly across the three habitats, but statistical estimations of true species richness (S-est) did not. Habitat specificity of the dung beetles in this study was extremely high. Of the 50 most common species collected during the study, only 2 species were collected in both the forest and savanna habitats, signaling nearly complete community turnover in just a few meters. Strong edge effects were evidenced by the decline in abundance, total biomass, and species richness at the forest-savanna boundary.

URL:<Go to ISI>://000186644700009
Taxonomic name: 
Canthon chiriguano (Scarabaeinae), Canthon subhyalinus (Scarabaeinae), Coprophanaeus ensifer (Scarabaeinae), Coprophanaeus milon (Scarabaeinae), Coprophanaeus telamon (Scarabaeinae), Oxysternon conspicillatum (Scarabaeinae), Oxysternon silenus (Scarabaeinae), Phanaeus bispinus (Scarabaeinae), Phanaeus chalcomelas (Scarabaeinae), Phanaeus palaeno (Scarabaeinae), Sulcophanaeus faunus (Scarabaeinae), Onthophagus rubrescens (Scarabaeinae), Onthophagus onthochromus (Scarabaeinae), Onthophagus hirculus (Scarabaeinae), Onthophagus haematopus (Scarabaeinae), Ontherus azteca (Scarabaeinae), Ontherus aphodioides (Scarabaeinae), Eurysternus ventricosus (Scarabaeinae), Eurysternus foedus (Scarabaeinae), Eurysternus caribaeus (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius worontzowi (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius melzeri (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius lucasi (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius imitator (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius carbonarius (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius calcaratus (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius bos (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum sextuberculatum (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum pseudoicarus (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum orbiculare (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum komareki (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum enceladus (Scarabaeinae), Deltochilum amazonicum (Scarabaeinae), Canthon septemmaculatus (Scarabaeinae), Canthon semiopacus (Scarabaeinae), Canthon dives (Scarabaeinae), Canthidium multipunctatum (Scarabaeinae), Canthidium gerstaeckeri (Scarabaeinae), Canthidium basipunctatum (Scarabaeinae), Canthidium barbacenicum (Scarabaeinae), Ateuchus pygidiale (Scarabaeinae), Ateuchus connexum (Scarabaeinae), Sylvicanthon candezei (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius nimuendaju (Scarabaeinae), Dichotomius podalirius (Scarabaeinae), Coprophanaeus (Scarabaeinae), Eurysternus (Scarabaeinae), Ontherus (Scarabaeinae), Oxysternon (Scarabaeinae), Phanaeus (Scarabaeinae), Sulcophanaeus (Scarabaeinae)
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith