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Countryside biogeography: Utilization of human-dominated habitats by the avifauna of southern Costa

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    ABSTRACT: The future of biodiversity depends to a great extent on the conservation value of human-dominated and semi-natural habitats. In a mixed agricultural landscape in southern Costa Rica, we compared the richness and composition of terrestrial arthropod communities occurring in three habitat types along a gradient of increasing disturbance: in a large (227 ha) forest fragment, small (3.8–5.3 ha) forest fragments, and sun coffee (1–3 ha) plantations. Pitfall trap sampling revealed decreasing morphospecies richness with increasing disturbance. Moreover, the number of species unique to a habitat type was lower in the smaller forest fragments and the coffee sites. We found significant changes in community composition associated with habitat at the levels of order (all arthropods), family (beetles), and morphospecies (carabids, scarabs, and ants). We identified no significant correlation of richness among the taxonomic orders, meaning these taxa are unable to serve as biodiversity indicators (for each other or for all arthropods) in the study region. Arthropod diversity presently found in countryside habitats is certainly lower, and perhaps less sustainable, than that of the extensive forested habitats fragmented Keywords: Arthropod diversity; Biodiversity indicators; Coffee; Coleoptera; Countryside biogeography; Fragmentation; Morphospecies; Neotropics Document Type: Research Article Affiliations: 1: Center for Conservation Biology, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University, 371 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA 94305-5020, USA; Author for correspondence e-mail: dgoehrin@princeton.edu; phone: (609)258-6879 2: Center for Conservation Biology, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University, 371 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA 94305-5020, USA Publication date: June 1, 2002 $(document).ready(function() { var shortdescription = $(".originaldescription").text().replace(/\\&/g, '&').replace(/\\, '<').replace(/\\>/g, '>').replace(/\\t/g, ' ').replace(/\\n/g, ''); if (shortdescription.length > 350){ shortdescription = "" + shortdescription.substring(0,250) + "... more"; } $(".descriptionitem").prepend(shortdescription); $(".shortdescription a").click(function() { $(".shortdescription").hide(); $(".originaldescription").slideDown(); return false; }); }); Related content In this: publication By this: publisher By this author: Goehring, D.M. ; Daily, G.C. ; Şekerçioglu Ç.H. GA_googleFillSlot("Horizontal_banner_bottom");
    Journal of Insect Conservation 01/2002; 6(2). · 1.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human activities, particularly agriculture, have transformed much of the world's terrestrial environment. Within these anthropogenic landscapes, a variety of relictual and semi-natural habitats exist, which we term countryside elements. The habitat value of countryside elements (hereafter termed 'elements') is increasingly recognised. We quantify the relative value of four kinds of such 'elements' (linear roadside remnants, native vegetation patches, scattered trees and tree plantings) used by a threatened Australian arboreal marsupial, the squirrel glider (Petaurus norfolcensis). We examined relationships between home range size and the availability of each 'element' and whether the usage was relative to predicted levels of use. The use of 'elements' by gliders was largely explained by their availability, but there was a preference for native vegetation patches and scattered trees. We found home range size was significantly smaller with increasing area of scattered trees and a contrasting effect with increasing area of linear roadside remnants or native vegetation patches. Our work showed that each 'element' was used and as such had a role in the conservation of the squirrel glider, but their relative value varied. We illustrate the need to assess the conservation value of countryside elements so they can be incorporated into the holistic management of agricultural landscapes. This work demonstrates the disproportional value of scattered trees, underscoring the need to specifically incorporate and/or enhance the protection and recruitment of scattered trees in biodiversity conservation policy and management.
    PLoS ONE 09/2014; 9(9):e107178. · 3.53 Impact Factor