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Title: Different responses of dung beetle diversity and feeding guilds from natural and disturbed habitats across a subtropical elevational gradient
Authors: Alvarado, Fredy
Salomão, Renato Portela
Hernandez-Rivera, Álvaro
Araujo Lira, André Felipe de
Keywords: Beetle
Environmental Disturbance
Habitat Structure
Land Use
Landscape Change
Species Diversity
Issue Date: 2020
metadata.dc.publisher.journal: Acta Oecologica
metadata.dc.relation.ispartof: Volume 104
Abstract: Understanding the effects of natural and anthropogenic processes that drives biodiversity is urgently needed to improve conservation strategies at the landscape scale. Although natural drivers on altitudinal gradients have been well studied, the concatenated effect of habitat disturbance across different altitudes over biodiversity is still poorly known. We aimed to test the effect of habitat transformation on assemblage metrics of dung beetles across an altitudinal gradient (between 0 and 3400 m.a.s.l.; 18 elevational bands). Our results highlighted four main findings: (i) dung beetle forests or pastures specialized species changed their habitat specificity depending on the elevation range; (ii) a hump-shaped pattern of dung beetle diversity at intermediate elevations was found both in forests and pastures; (iii) species turnover was the main component of β diversity in both forest and pastures; (iv) presence of crops and human settlements across elevational gradient influenced changes the taxonomical and feeding guild composition of dung beetle assemblages, but these effects were elevation-site-dependent. These results suggest that the impacts of habitat disturbance on beetle assemblages caused by humans’ activities on mountains are spatial site dependents. We highlight the importance of understanding the effect of environmental disturbance in mountain ecosystems using a wide range of assemblage metrics. This research serves as basis for the development of efficient conservation strategies to protect species and ecosystem functions in these fragile environments. © 2020 Elsevier Masson SAS
metadata.dc.identifier.doi: 10.1016/j.actao.2020.103533
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