Dung beetle community (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) in a tropical landscape at the Lachua Region, Guatemala

  • Avendaño-Mendoza C
  • Morón-Ríos A
  • Cano E
 et al. 
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Abstract

Biological diversity conservation within natural reserves has been prioritized, but conservation efforts outside protected areas (where most human activities take place) have been very little considered. In this scenario, an alternative agricultural practice that may reduce the impacts of fragmentation in outer landscapes is a perforation process, which involves conservation in agricultural fields surrounded by continuous forests. Such practices enhance the positive impact of ecological services on fields. In this study we analyzed the biological diversity state in perforation fields and their surrounding forests. The analysis was done using dung beetles as biological indicators. A nested pattern in dung beetles distribution was found, which ordered the surrounding continuous forest sites as the ones with the highest species richness, followed by the perforation fields, and placed the fragmentation practice fields (continuous agricultural fields surrounding forest patches) with the lowest one. Indicator species for perforation fields and surrounding continuous forests were chosen. In general, perforation practice fields differed in composition, based upon functional groups richness and identity; it also contained a higher species richness than the fragmentation practice. Agricultural practices that enhance biological diversity conservation such as perforation, should be recommended and considered in natural resource management by local communities in order to take advantage of ecological services that otherwise may be gradually lost

Author-supplied keywords

  • Biological diversity
  • Dung beetle
  • Fragmentation
  • Functional groups
  • Landscape
  • Nestedness
  • Perforation practice

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Authors

  • Carlos Avendaño-Mendoza

  • Alejandro Morón-Ríos

  • Enio B. Cano

  • Jorgel León-Cortés

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