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Neotropical Entomology

versão impressa ISSN 1519-566X


MENDONCA JR, Milton De S; PICCARDI, Hosana M F; JAHNKE, Simone M  e  DALBEM, Ricardo V. Galling arthropod diversity in adjacent swamp forests and restinga vegetation in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Neotrop. entomol. [online]. 2010, vol.39, n.4, pp.513-518. ISSN 1519-566X.

Galling arthropods create plant structures inside which they find shelter. Factors acting on galler diversity are still being discussed, with this fauna considered more diverse in xeric than mesic environments (higrothermic stress hypothesis, HSH), and also in more plant diverse sites. Here we compare galler abundance (N), equitability (E), species richness (S) and composition between adjacent restinga (xeric) and swamp forests (mesic) in Parque Estadual de Itapeva (29°21' S, 49°45' W), Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil. Five trails, two in swamp forest and three in restingas, were sampled four times each (January/December 2005). After an effort of 60h/person, 621 galled plant individuals belonging to 104 gall morphotypes were recorded. This suggests a high galler diversity for the Park, comparable to the richest places known. No differences were found for N, E or S between restingas and swamp forests. However, faunal composition differs significantly between the vegetation types. The dominant (most abundant) species are different in either vegetation type, and are rare or absent on the other vegetation type. Such species composition analysis is still largely ignored for gallers, and stresses the fact that the HSH cannot explain this pattern, since the latter is based on preferences by the ovipositing galler for xeric sites instead of mesic ones. The two habitats differ in microclimate, but species richness, as would be predicted by the HSH, does not differ. This small scale pattern can perhaps be attributed to biogeographic processes on larger scales, as suggested by the resource synchronisation hypothesis.

Palavras-chave : Hygrothermic stress; gall; species composition; species richness.

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