Assembly rules for ground beetle communities: What determines community structure, environmental factors or competition?

Shibuya, Sonomi and Kubota, Kohei and Ohsawa, Masahiko and Kikvidze, Zaal Assembly rules for ground beetle communities: What determines community structure, environmental factors or competition? European Journal of Entomology.

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Abstract

Species assembly in ground beetle (Coleoptera: Carabidae) communities in local microhabitats was studied in a forest. The following questions were addressed: are there important filters that sort the species in the assemblages? If so, what is the specific nature of these filters? In order to address these questions rarefaction analysis was used to determine whether ground beetle species are distributed non-randomly. Next, the nature of filters was determined by analyzing (1) the community matrix and searching for the consequences of competitive exclusion and (2) species-environmental relations. Rarefaction analysis revealed that the species composition is filtered: species richness was less than expected and there were fewer than expected congeneric species coexisting at high beetle population densities. However, community matrix and body size analyses did not detect significant competition among the beetle species and the matrix was significantly nested. Species-environmental analyses indicated that the ground beetle assembly was strongly linked to ground vegetation. It is concluded that spatial distribution of ground beetles across local communities in this forest habitat is determined more by local environmental conditions than competition, and ground beetles do not interact strongly among themselves so that competitive effects do not play an important role in their distribution except at high beetle population densities.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science > Ecology
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Institutes > 4D Research Institute
Depositing User: Prof. Zaal Kikvidze
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2014 19:22
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2014 19:22
URI: http://eprints.iliauni.edu.ge/id/eprint/473

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