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Cuiabá, Brazil

Diniz S.,Laboratory Of Ecologia Animal | Prado P.I.,University of Sao Paulo | Lewinsohn T.M.,University of Campinas
Neotropical Entomology | Year: 2010

Anthropogenic changes in the landscape result in an environmental mosaic with serious consequences for biodiversity. The aim of the present study was to assess the effects of the anthropogenic changes on Asteraceae richness and abundance, and to evaluate the consequences for the richness of Tephritidae assemblages in five sampling sites, with three sampled habitats in each: cerrado (Brazilian savanna), eucalyptus stands and pasture. Sampling was carried out in 15 random transects (cerrados and one pasture) and in 30 transects (eucalyptus stands and the remaining pastures). Composition, species richness and insect abundance in each habitat type was estimated by sampling the flower heads for each species of host plant, collected by four people for 1h. Differences in mean abundance of plant population between habitats and sites were tested by two-way ANOVA. Differences in plant species richness between habitats and sites and effects of habitat, site and host plant richness on insect richness were tested using a generalized linear model with Poisson errors. Within each sampling site, cerrados showed higher species richness of Asteraceae than pastures and eucalyptus stands. There were also significant differences in plant richness among sites. Mean population abundance values were significantly different among habitats, but not among sites. Increased host plant richness led to significant insect species richness. There were no additional significant effects of habitat on insect richness. Therefore, anthropogenic alterations in landscape determined the impoverishment of plant assemblages and therefore of insect assemblages, because of the positive relationship between host plant richness and insect richness. Source

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