Changes in Oribatid mite communities associated with Scots pine regeneration

Horwood, J. A. and Butt, K. R. (2000) Changes in Oribatid mite communities associated with Scots pine regeneration. Web Ecology, 1 . pp. 76-81. ISSN 2193-3081

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Compositions of oribatid mite communities were compared under five stages of native Scots pine regeneration (spanning 100 yr) within the Abernethy Forest Reserve, U.K. Sampling was conducted during autumn and spring and oribatid mites identified using the morphospecies technique. Results showed the oribatid mite fauna to be abundant and diverse. Density of mites generally decreased with soil depth, however in the woodland sites the upper 10cm of soil contained more individuals than the litter layer. Eleven morphospecies showed significant differences (p < 0.05) in abundance between sites with marked preferences for either mature woodland or tree-less moorland. During spring, morphospecies richness and mite density were highest at the woodland sites, but during autumn they were greater at the moorland sites. Shannon Weiner diversity indices and measures of evenness for each site, calculated for each site, showed that despite having a high morphospecies richness, sites were often dominated by a few very abundant morphospecies. A greater number of mites were collected during autumn, but only one morphospecies showed significant seasonal differences in numbers. Factors influencing differences in oribatid communities at each site are discussed and the use of morphospecies as an identification tool is discussed.

Keywords:Oribatid mites, Scots pine, Woodland, Moorland, Morphospecies
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C170 Population Biology
C Biological Sciences > C300 Zoology
Divisions:Lincoln International Business School
ID Code:27058
Deposited On:04 May 2017 10:10

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