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On-line version ISSN 1676-0611
RABELLO, Ananza; RAMOS, Flávio Nunes and HASUI, Érica. Effect of fragment size on Copaifera langsdorffii seeds dispersal. Biota Neotrop. [online]. 2010, vol.10, n.1, pp.47-54. ISSN 1676-0611. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1676-06032010000100004.
Effect of fragment size on Copaifera langsdorffii seed dispersal. Habitat fragmentation may cause functional disruption in seed dispersal, if the disperser species become locally extinct in the fragments. However during the fragmentation process, there is empirical evidence of replacement of specialist by generalist species, and these generalist species could also replace the functional activity of the specialists in the ecosystem. We studied bird frugivory on C. langsdorffii in order to evaluate the patch size effect on the potential of seed dispersal of this plant. During 2008 we chose 20 focal trees distributed in five Atlantic forest remnants (range 29.2 to 104.8 ha), looking for which bird species consumed the fruits, describing their foraging behavior and consequently evaluating the potential for seed dispersal. The results suggest that there was lower similarity of bird richness among the patches. The ability to disperse seeds also varied among birds and their patterns of distribution and abundance were related with patch size. The number of good disperser species and their interactions were positively related with patch size (R2 = 0.85; p = 0.05); in contrast, the poor dispersers had the opposite tendency (R2 = 0.77; p=0.08). Therefore the preservation of larger patch size increases the interaction events between C. langsdorffii and their good dispersers, and consequently improving their fitness.
Keywords : birds; Atlantic Forest; fragmentation; plant-animal interaction; foraging tactics.