Effects of climate and forest age on plant and caterpillar diversity in the Yucatan, Mexico

Periodo de realización: 1900/01/01 al 2014/06/01

Tipo: Artículo científico

Resumen: "Understanding patterns in plant and herbivorous insect diversity across spatial and temporal scales is fundamental to ecology, but comparative multi-taxonomic studies in tropical seasonally dry forests remain scarce. In 36 sites, distributed over three forest age classes (5–10 y, 10–30 y, >100 y) and three seasonal forest types (dry, intermediate, humid), we sampled plants of different stem diameter classes while caterpillars were sampled across vertically distributed forest layers during three seasons over the year. We recorded 299 plant species and 485 caterpillar morphospecies. For large woody plants, species numbers showed a gradually increasing trend with forest age in the intermediate and humid forest types, while the main portion of explained variation in overall species turnover was accounted for by the forest type × forest age interaction (21.3–23.1% of 44.4–48.7%). Ordinations and multivariate pairwise comparisons suggested a faster but also very distinct successional development of species diversity of large plants in the driest compared with humid and intermediate forest types. In contrast, highest species numbers of small plants in the undergrowth was often found in the 5–10 y-old vegetation across forest types, whereas forest type was the major factor in overall species turnover (contributing 24.2% of 48.7% explained variation). Caterpillar species turnover was most correlated to species turnover of small plants"

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