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Ecosystem birth near melting glaciers : A review on the pioneer role of ground-dwelling arthropods

Hågvar, Sigmund ; Gobbi, Mauro ; Kaufmann, Rüdiger ; Ingimarsdóttir, María LU ; Caccianiga, Marco ; Valle, Barbara ; Pantini, Paolo ; Fanciulli, Pietro Paolo and Vater, Amber (2020) In Insects 11(9). p.1-35
Abstract

As glaciers retreat, their forelands represent “natural laboratories” for the study of primary succession. This review describes how certain arthropods conquer pristine ground and develop food webs before the establishment of vascular plants. Based on soil samples, pitfall traps, fallout and sticky traps, gut content studies, and some unpublished data, we compare early arthropod succession on glacial forelands of northern Europe (Iceland, Norway including Svalbard, and Sweden) and of the Alps (Austria, Italy). While macroarthropod predators like ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae), harvestmen (Arachnida: Opiliones), and spiders (Arachnida: Araneae) have usually been considered as pioneers, assumed to feed on airborne prey, this... (More)

As glaciers retreat, their forelands represent “natural laboratories” for the study of primary succession. This review describes how certain arthropods conquer pristine ground and develop food webs before the establishment of vascular plants. Based on soil samples, pitfall traps, fallout and sticky traps, gut content studies, and some unpublished data, we compare early arthropod succession on glacial forelands of northern Europe (Iceland, Norway including Svalbard, and Sweden) and of the Alps (Austria, Italy). While macroarthropod predators like ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae), harvestmen (Arachnida: Opiliones), and spiders (Arachnida: Araneae) have usually been considered as pioneers, assumed to feed on airborne prey, this review explains a different pattern. Here, we highlight that springtails (Collembola), probably feeding on biofilm made up of algae or cyanobacteria, are super-pioneers, even at high altitudes and under arctic conditions. We also point out that macroarthropod predators can use locally available prey, such as springtails or non-biting midges (Diptera: Chironomidae). Pioneer arthropod communities vary under different biogeographical and climatic conditions. Two pioneer food webs, from northern Europe and the Alps, respectively, differed in structure and function. However, certain genera and orders were common to both. Generalists and specialists live together in a pioneer community. Cold-adapted specialists are threatened by glacier melting.

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author
; ; ; ; ; ; ; and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Arthropods, Collembola, Food web, Foreland, Glacier, Pioneers, Succession
in
Insects
volume
11
issue
9
article number
644
pages
35 pages
publisher
MDPI AG
external identifiers
  • pmid:32961739
  • scopus:85091290625
ISSN
2075-4450
DOI
10.3390/insects11090644
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
c8610da5-9351-4d56-809a-1f874a1a6e75
date added to LUP
2020-10-28 10:37:03
date last changed
2021-03-31 04:38:24
@article{c8610da5-9351-4d56-809a-1f874a1a6e75,
  abstract     = {<p>As glaciers retreat, their forelands represent “natural laboratories” for the study of primary succession. This review describes how certain arthropods conquer pristine ground and develop food webs before the establishment of vascular plants. Based on soil samples, pitfall traps, fallout and sticky traps, gut content studies, and some unpublished data, we compare early arthropod succession on glacial forelands of northern Europe (Iceland, Norway including Svalbard, and Sweden) and of the Alps (Austria, Italy). While macroarthropod predators like ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae), harvestmen (Arachnida: Opiliones), and spiders (Arachnida: Araneae) have usually been considered as pioneers, assumed to feed on airborne prey, this review explains a different pattern. Here, we highlight that springtails (Collembola), probably feeding on biofilm made up of algae or cyanobacteria, are super-pioneers, even at high altitudes and under arctic conditions. We also point out that macroarthropod predators can use locally available prey, such as springtails or non-biting midges (Diptera: Chironomidae). Pioneer arthropod communities vary under different biogeographical and climatic conditions. Two pioneer food webs, from northern Europe and the Alps, respectively, differed in structure and function. However, certain genera and orders were common to both. Generalists and specialists live together in a pioneer community. Cold-adapted specialists are threatened by glacier melting.</p>},
  author       = {Hågvar, Sigmund and Gobbi, Mauro and Kaufmann, Rüdiger and Ingimarsdóttir, María and Caccianiga, Marco and Valle, Barbara and Pantini, Paolo and Fanciulli, Pietro Paolo and Vater, Amber},
  issn         = {2075-4450},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {9},
  pages        = {1--35},
  publisher    = {MDPI AG},
  series       = {Insects},
  title        = {Ecosystem birth near melting glaciers : A review on the pioneer role of ground-dwelling arthropods},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/insects11090644},
  doi          = {10.3390/insects11090644},
  volume       = {11},
  year         = {2020},
}