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Zoologia (Curitiba)

Print version ISSN 1984-4670


GONI, Beatriz et al. Species of Drosophila (Diptera: Drosophilidae) attracted to dung and carrion baited pitfall traps in the Uruguayan Eastern Serranías. Zoologia (Curitiba) [online]. 2012, vol.29, n.4, pp.308-317. ISSN 1984-4670.

This study investigates the species richness and abundance of Drosophila Fallén, 1823 attracted to dung and carrion baited pitfall traps in natural areas with heterogeneous habitats at the Sierra de Minas, Eastern Serranías, southeastern Uruguay. Collecting was carried out on a monthly basis (May 2002 through April 2003). Drosophilids accounted for 0.84% (n = 131) and 3.61% (n = 158) of the Diptera collected from dung (n = 15,630) and carrion (n = 4,382) pitfall traps, respectively. A total of 12 species were identified, 11 of which belong to the subgenus Drosophila (the richest) and one to the subgenus Sophophora Sturtevant, 1939. Over 90% of the Drosophila specimens collected belong to five species of the subgenus Drosophila, namely D. gaucha Jaeger & Salzano, 1953, D. immigrans Sturtevant, 1921, D. mediovittata Frota-Pessoa, 1954, D. aff. nappae Vilela, Valente & Basso-da-Silva, 2004, and D. ornatifrons Duda, 1927. Drosophila cardini Sturtevant, 1916 is recorded for the first time from Uruguay. Drosophila abundance and species richness in the four habitats sampled in the Uruguayan Eastern Serranías, namely woodlands sierra, riparian forest, pine plantation and grazing grassland, were considered to be a function of habitat conservation. Diversity indices were low in all habitats. Different habitats supported particular coprophilous and necrophilous Drosophila species. The woodland sierra represents the most preserved habitat, and contributed with the highest species richness observed. Drosophila ornatifrons was the dominant species, with a restricted habitat distribution. On the other hand, grazed grassland, an environment modified by livestock management, had the lowest species richness: only a few specimens of D. repleta Wollaston, 1858. Regarding species composition, significant differences were found in some pairwise comparisons of groups of Drosophila species that included D. ornatifrons. Fly attraction to dung can be exploited as an alternative and/or complementary collecting method in ecological studies of Drosophila assemblages in natural areas.

Keywords : Biodiversity; coprophilous; Drosophilinae; necrophilous; Neotropical Region.

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