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An Introduction to Some Cave Fauna of Malaysia and Thailand

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... The majority of them are dry although some still have active stream passages. Some caves are seemingly devoid of fauna, whereas others have thriving communities, , (Price, 2004). In many temperate caves, especially in Europe, it can be quite diff icult to see cave fauna except in the entrance zones (Vandel, 1965; Gunn, 2004; White and Culver, 2012). ...
... The cave food web can be quite complex but is primarily based on the guano. There are two main types of bats that inhabit Malaysian caves, the insect eaters (insectivores) and fruit eaters (frugivores), (Price, 2004; Abdullah 2007). When they return to the cave after feeding, their resulting guano indirectly serves as food sources for most of the cave fauna, from the smallest invertebrates that feed on the guano, which in turn are food to the larger cave dwelling snakes, amphibians and small mammals. ...
... Bats and cave swiftlets support a range of parasites that make a unique contribution to biodiversity and include a range of mites, ticks, fleas and bat flies. Particularly noticeable in Deer Cave are hairy earwigs, Arixeniaesau, (Dermaptera: Arixeniidae) that live on the naked bat ( ), feeding on oils produced by the bats to protect their skin (Price, 2004). At the top of many Malaysian caves' food chains are snakes. ...
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Besides microbes a wide variety of cave animals inhabit various caves of Malaysia, ranging from tiny invertebrates through to small mammals, reptiles, amphibians and bats. Evidence even supports the visitation of elephants to some caves. In the present report the food web complexity and the species diversity that exist in Malaysian caves is described on the basis of direct sightings. Furthermore, the major threats to the present status of such caves are also discussed.
... A limestone cave may feature speleothems such as stalagtite, stalagmite, column, curtain and corals (Davies & Morgan 1991). The open space in cave may provide shelter to organisms ranging from microscopic invertebrates to larger mammals such as mountain goat (Price 2004). Even when Malaysia have quite a number of caves, the record of cave fauna in this country is very limited. ...
... As there is a severe lack of knowledge regarding cave-dwelling insects in this country, local comparison may only be done with records found in Batu Caves (Dover et al. 1929;McClure at al. 1967;Mosely et al. 2012;Price 2004) and Gunung Senyum Cave (Shahar et al. 2011). Ant (Formicidae) is a spatio-temporal dominant species as its distribution are at large in various habitat. ...
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A preliminary study of cave-dwelling insects were conducted in Gunung Senyum Cave, Pahang to identify diurnal insect present in the cave environment. The objective of this study is to make a preliminary checklist of diurnal cave-dwelling insects found within Gunung Senyum Cave, Pahang. This study is done in order to fill in the knowledge gap regarding cave insects which is very sparse in Malaysia. Gunung Senyum Cave is a limestone cave estimated to be around 3000 years old. The insects were collected by four different traps which were pitfall trap, light trap, impact trap and sticky trap. The light trap was set up at 3 m high above the ground. Pitfall trap and impact trap were placed on cave floor while sticky trap were stick flat on the cave wall. A total of 2291 individuals from six orders (Coleoptera, Lepidoptera, Hymenoptera, Diptera, Ephemeroptera and Orthoptera) and 21 families were successfully collected. The most abundance individuals identified were from family Formicidae, from order Hymenoptera (57.18%), family Ripiphoridae, from order Coleoptera (25.70%), family Simuliidae from order Diptera (5.85%) and family Ephemeridae from order Ephemeroptera (4.58%). Most insect collected are considered as trogloxene and troglophile insect. ABSTRAK Kajian awal mengenai serangga yang mendiami gua telah dilakukan di Gua Gunung Senyum, Pahang untuk mengenal pasti serangga diurnal yang terdapat di dalam gua tersebut. Objektif kajian ini adalah untuk menghasilkan senarai awal bagi serangga diurnal yang wujud di dalam Gua Gunung Senyum. Gua Gunung Senyum adalah gua batu kapur yang dianggarkan berumur sekitar 3000 tahun. Serangga dari gua dikumpul menggunakan empat jenis perangkap iaitu perangkap lubang, perangkap lampu, perangkap langgar jatuh dan perangkap lekatan. Perangkap lampu diletakkan pada jarak 3m dari lantai gua. Perangkap lubang dan perangkap langgar jatuh diletakkan di atas lantai gua manakala perangkap lekatan dilekatkan pada dinding gua. Sejumlah 2291 individu dari 6 order (Coleoptera, Lepidoptera, Hymenoptera, Diptera, Ephemeroptera dan Orthoptera) dan 21 famili berjaya dikumpulkan. Bilangan individu yang paling banyak ditemui adalah dari famili Formicidae daripada order Hymenoptera (57.18%), famili Ripophiridae daripada order Coleoptera (25.70%), famili Simuliidae daripada order Serangga 23(3):1-16 Nur-Athirah Abdullah et al.
... Outside caves, P. americana has been noted to outcompete and caused the local extinction of phalangopsine cricket, Nesitathra philipensis in Norfolk Island (Rentz, 1988). P. americana had also been reported from several caves in Malaysia and Thailand and were noted to have caused the declining population of Pycnoscelus striatus (Kirby) in Batu Cave, Malaysia (Price, 2004). It may have that it has displaced the native cave cockroach, like P. banksi Hanitsch which is present in Baga Cave of the nearby Talikud Island (Figure 1), and phalangopsine crickets. ...
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During a survey of caves in Samal Island, Philippines, two species of cockroaches were collected, namely: Periplaneta banksi Hanitsch from Baga Cave, and P. americana (L.), from Manan-ao Cave. This is the first record of P. banksi in the southern Philippines and P. americana inside Philippine caves. The role of human disturbance on the invasion by alien species and consequent displacement of local fauna in cave habitats is discussed.
... Tropical caves of Southeast Asia are often home to a wide range of cave fauna, ranging from microscopic invertebrates to snakes and bats at the top of the food *Corresponding Author's E-mail: olgamnuneza@yahoo.com 56 chain (Price, 2004). The Philippine archipelago itself hosts several interesting karst areas such as caves (De Vivo et al., 2009). ...
... Development projects progress steadily in karstic regions and tourist caves are developed without consideration for subterranean resources and the rich biodiversity they often support (Whitten 2009). While we recognize environmental conditions are improving and environmental regulations have strengthened, deforestation (Trajano 2000, Ferreira & Horta 2001, Clements et al. 2006, Stone & Howarth 2007, intensive agriculture and water diversion (van Beynen & Townsend 2005, Stone & Howarth 2007, Harley et al. 2011, alien species introductions (Taylor et al. 2003, Price 2004, heavy metals and agrochemicals (Whitten 2009), and global climate change (Chevaldonné & Lejeune 2003, Mammola et al. 2018 continue to present conservation challenges for cave fauna in China. Thus, we recommend monitoring environmental conditions of the surface and subsurface of caves, as well as developing systematic inventories and vulnerability assessment procedures (Mammola et al. 2019) to help safeguard China's subterranean natural resources. ...
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Two new troglomorphic pseudoscorpion species, Parobisium magangensis sp. n. and P. yuantongi sp. n., belonging to the family Neobisiidae, are described based on specimens collected in karst caves from Beijing, China. These are the first troglomorphic pseudoscorpions discovered from caves in northern China. Detailed diagnosis, descriptions, and illustrations are provided. We also offer future research and management recommendations for these two new pseudoscorpion species.
... The first exploration of the freshwater cave fauna in SE Asia started at the end of the 19 th century and was mainly limited to terrestrial habitats (Price, 2004 ). Actually , even today, most work is still focussed on terrestrial fauna (=troglobionts) (Juberthie and Decu, 2001). ...
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Groundwater fauna consists of organisms that are adapted to live their whole life-time in different types of groundwater (=aquifers): with fissured (karstic) and porous (alluvium) types as the most common. About 3800 species of obligate groundwater species (stygobionts) have been recorded worldwide and 2000 of them from groundwater in Europe. Before 1970, 19 species of stygobionts were known from Southeast Asia. After 1980, the number of stygobionts from this region started to increase, and, at present, 122 stygobionts are known here. Most of them are crustaceans, with the Copepoda, Isopoda, Amphipoda and Decapoda as the most abundant groups. Intensification of research on groundwater fauna can considerably increase the total number of stygobionts known from the region, which could rises up to several times the current tally if the intensity of research was comparable with that in Europe.
... Occasionally various carnivores have been reported from tropical caves either in search of prey or to meet some other biological requirements (Gunn 2004, Harries et al 2008). Porcupines use subterranean caves for their diurnal resting phase were already reported from several parts of the world (Price 2004; Moseley 2007; Harries et al 2009). In the inner chamber of the Dandak cave most of the dens are found as blind pockets, where this species remain during their resting phase. ...
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Perpetual darkness, high humidity with almost constant geophysical factors are some of the abiotic factors which make the cave ecosystem unique. For any species a high degree of adaptation is always needed to thrive in such an ecosystem. Mammals in general have never adapted to cave life but they can play a major role in the cave ecosystem. Structurally, the Dandak cave has two distinct chambers that are completely different from each other in several geophysical factors. Thus both the cave chambers offer two distinct types of ecological niche. In the present study we found that both chambers of this cave were dominated by mammals all year round. Additionally, the group of mammals using the outer chamber completely differs from the group using the inner one. Possible geophysical factors responsible for such differences are discussed.
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Mammals are important sources of nutrients to cave ecosystems, and in some circumstances, caves may be an essential resource for mammals. Few studies, however, have focused on the use of caves by terrestrial mammals. The Yucatán Peninsula encompasses an extensive carbonate karst region that includes the world's largest underwater cave system. Forest in the region overlies fractured limestone bedrock, so flooded caves known regionally as cenotes represent the only reliable source of free‐standing water for much of the Peninsula's wildlife. We used camera traps at 17 cenotes on the Yucatán Peninsula to determine patterns of use by mammals. Eighteen non‐volant mammal taxa were identified using cenotes, the most commonly occurring being lowland paca (Agouti paca), opossums (Didelphis spp.), white‐nosed coati (Nasua narica), gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), tayra (Eira barbara), and gray four‐eyed opossum (Philander opossum); collectively these taxa accounted for 76% of all mammal records. We also recorded several felids using cenotes, including jaguar (Panthera onca) and puma (Puma concolor). Activity patterns at cenotes usually matched normal activity schedules, but some species were nocturnal in the forest but diurnal at cenotes. Mammals mostly accessed cenotes to drink, but a range of activities were recorded including foraging, nesting, mating, resting, and bathing. The Yucatán region has experienced continued population growth and economic development over many decades which directly threatens cenotes. Because our work has revealed that cenotes are important to the Yucatán's mammals, we believe protection of cenotes should be a central issue for regional wildlife conservation. Abstract in Spanish is available with online material. Los mamíferos son importantes fuentes de nutrientes para los ecosistemas de cuevas y, en algunas circunstancias las cuevas pueden ser un recurso esencial para los mamíferos. Sin embargo, pocos estudios se han centrado en el uso de las cuevas por mamíferos terrestres. La Península de Yucatán abarca una extensa región cárstica carbonatada que incluye el sistema de cuevas submarinas más grande del mundo. La selva de la región se superpone al lecho de roca caliza fracturada, por lo que las cuevas inundadas, conocidas como cenotes, representan la única fuente de agua para gran parte de la fauna de la Península. Utilizamos cámaras trampa en 17 cenotes de la Península de Yucatán para determinar los patrones de uso por los mamíferos. Se identificaron 18 taxones de mamíferos no voladores que utilizaban los cenotes, siendo los más frecuentes: el tepezcuintle (Agouti paca), las zarigüeyas (Didelphis spp.), el coatí de nariz blanca (Nasua narica), el zorro gris (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), el tayra (Eira barbara) y la zarigüeya gris de cuatro ojos (Philander opossum); en conjunto, estos taxones representaron el 76% de todos los registros de mamíferos. También se registraron varios félidos en los cenotes, como el jaguar (Panthera onca) y el puma (Puma concolor). Los patrones de actividad en los cenotes suelen coincidir con los horarios normales de actividad, aunque algunas especies que son nocturnas en la selva presentaron hábitos diurnos en los cenotes. Los mamíferos accedieron a los cenotes principalmente para beber, pero se registraron diversas actividades, como la búsqueda de alimento, la anidación, el apareamiento, el descanso y el baño. La región de Yucatán ha experimentado un crecimiento demográfico y un desarrollo económico continuo durante muchas décadas que amenazan directamente a los cenotes. Dado que nuestro trabajo ha revelado que los cenotes son importantes para los mamíferos de Yucatán, creemos que la protección de los cenotes debería ser un tema central para la conservación de la fauna regional. Jungle on the Yucatán Peninsula overlies fractured limestone bedrock where flooded caves known regionally as cenotes represent the only reliable source of free‐standing water for much of the Peninsula’s wildlife. Using camera traps we showed that at least 20 mammals use cenotes to accessing drinking water, as well as for foraging, nesting, mating, resting and bathing. Because cenotes appear to be so important to the Yucatán’s mammals, we believe protection of cenotes ‐ threatened by population growth and economic development ‐ should be a central issue for regional wildlife conservation.
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We summarize and discuss the 29 known cave-dwelling pseudoscorpion species from China. Four new troglomorphic pseudoscorpion species, Parobisium motianense sp. nov., P. qiangzhuang sp. nov., P. san- louense sp. nov., and P. tiani sp. nov., belonging to the family Neobisiidae, are described based on speci- mens collected in karst caves in Guizhou, China. Detailed diagnosis, descriptions, and illustrations are presented. We also provide recommendations for management of caves where they occur, as well as the cave arthropod communities and the habitats that support them.
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Cockroaches collected during a protracted series of fieldwork in several limestone caves in Polillo Island, Philippines were taxonomically studied. A new species of Nocticola (Nocticolidae), N. gonzalezi Lucañas & Lit, sp. n., is described. The male of Periplaneta banksi Hanitsch (Blattidae) is described for the first time. Altogether, the present cave cockroach fauna of the island consists of six species.
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