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Spatial distribution of spiders and epedaphic Collembola in an environmentally heterogeneous forest floor habitat

Sereda, Elvira; Blick, Theo; Dorow, Wolfgang H. O.; Wolters, Volkmar and Birkhofer, Klaus LU (2012) In Pedobiologia 55(5). p.241-245
Abstract
Describing the biotic and abiotic processes that are responsible for the formation of spatial patterns in predators and their prey is crucial for improving our understanding of food-web interactions. We studied the spatial distribution of four abundant spider species and three common groups of epedaphic Collembola prey in a beech-dominated (Fagus sylvatica) forest floor habitat and related the observed patterns to environmental heterogeneity, overall predator activity (all ground beetles and spiders) and prey availability (all Collembola) at the local scale. Spiders and epedaphic Collembola were sampled over 392 days in a spatially explicit design based on a regular grid of 25 pitfall traps (inter-trap distance 100 m). Environmental... (More)
Describing the biotic and abiotic processes that are responsible for the formation of spatial patterns in predators and their prey is crucial for improving our understanding of food-web interactions. We studied the spatial distribution of four abundant spider species and three common groups of epedaphic Collembola prey in a beech-dominated (Fagus sylvatica) forest floor habitat and related the observed patterns to environmental heterogeneity, overall predator activity (all ground beetles and spiders) and prey availability (all Collembola) at the local scale. Spiders and epedaphic Collembola were sampled over 392 days in a spatially explicit design based on a regular grid of 25 pitfall traps (inter-trap distance 100 m). Environmental heterogeneity was characterized by cover of moss and litter as well as the amount of dead wood at each trap location. We first used the index of dispersion to characterize the spatial distribution of spider species and Collembola and then related the observed patterns to environmental heterogeneity, predator and prey availability while testing for spatial autocorrelation within the same models. All taxa were significantly more aggregated than expected from the assumption of random distribution. The distribution of spider species was positively (Coelotes terrestris) or negatively (Tenuiphantes zimmermanni and Tapinocyba insecta) related to the cover of moss and negatively related to litter cover (C. terrestris) or the local availability of prey (T. insecta). The distribution of Collembola was negatively related to local litter cover (Lepidocyrtus spp.) and positively related to the amount of medium deadwood pieces (all other Entomobryidae). Our study suggests that none of the spider species preferred areas of low overall predator activity density. Moreover, it does not indicate association of spider species to prey-rich areas at the analyzed scale of WO m. It further highlights the importance of environmental heterogeneity, as different habitat properties differentially affected the local activity density of spiders and Collembola and thus considerably contributed to the understanding of distribution patterns. (c) 2012 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Araneae, Habitat heterogeneity, Habitat preferences, Intraguild, interactions, Predator-prey interactions, Spatial distribution
in
Pedobiologia
volume
55
issue
5
pages
241 - 245
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • wos:000308853200002
  • scopus:84864062014
ISSN
1873-1511
DOI
10.1016/j.pedobi.2012.03.007
project
BECC
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
9d0b5de3-1fe4-4577-8772-e44ce17027ba (old id 3135856)
date added to LUP
2012-11-26 12:19:37
date last changed
2017-08-13 04:03:59
@article{9d0b5de3-1fe4-4577-8772-e44ce17027ba,
  abstract     = {Describing the biotic and abiotic processes that are responsible for the formation of spatial patterns in predators and their prey is crucial for improving our understanding of food-web interactions. We studied the spatial distribution of four abundant spider species and three common groups of epedaphic Collembola prey in a beech-dominated (Fagus sylvatica) forest floor habitat and related the observed patterns to environmental heterogeneity, overall predator activity (all ground beetles and spiders) and prey availability (all Collembola) at the local scale. Spiders and epedaphic Collembola were sampled over 392 days in a spatially explicit design based on a regular grid of 25 pitfall traps (inter-trap distance 100 m). Environmental heterogeneity was characterized by cover of moss and litter as well as the amount of dead wood at each trap location. We first used the index of dispersion to characterize the spatial distribution of spider species and Collembola and then related the observed patterns to environmental heterogeneity, predator and prey availability while testing for spatial autocorrelation within the same models. All taxa were significantly more aggregated than expected from the assumption of random distribution. The distribution of spider species was positively (Coelotes terrestris) or negatively (Tenuiphantes zimmermanni and Tapinocyba insecta) related to the cover of moss and negatively related to litter cover (C. terrestris) or the local availability of prey (T. insecta). The distribution of Collembola was negatively related to local litter cover (Lepidocyrtus spp.) and positively related to the amount of medium deadwood pieces (all other Entomobryidae). Our study suggests that none of the spider species preferred areas of low overall predator activity density. Moreover, it does not indicate association of spider species to prey-rich areas at the analyzed scale of WO m. It further highlights the importance of environmental heterogeneity, as different habitat properties differentially affected the local activity density of spiders and Collembola and thus considerably contributed to the understanding of distribution patterns. (c) 2012 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.},
  author       = {Sereda, Elvira and Blick, Theo and Dorow, Wolfgang H. O. and Wolters, Volkmar and Birkhofer, Klaus},
  issn         = {1873-1511},
  keyword      = {Araneae,Habitat heterogeneity,Habitat preferences,Intraguild,interactions,Predator-prey interactions,Spatial distribution},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {241--245},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Pedobiologia},
  title        = {Spatial distribution of spiders and epedaphic Collembola in an environmentally heterogeneous forest floor habitat},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pedobi.2012.03.007},
  volume       = {55},
  year         = {2012},
}