Tropical rain-forest matrix quality affects bat assemblage structure in secondary forest patches

I. Vleut, I. Levy-Tacher, J. Galindo-Gonzalez, W.F. de Boer, N. Ramirez-Marcial

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We studied Phyllostomidae bat assemblage structure in patches of secondary forest dominated by the pioneer tree Ochroma pyramidale, largely (.85%) or partially (,35%) surrounded by a matrix of tropical rain forest, to test 3 hypotheses: the highest bat diversity and richness is observed in the matrix rain forest in comparison to secondary forest patches; the proportion of rain forest surrounding secondary forest positively affects bat diversity and richness; and canopy openness is an important structural variable negatively affecting bat abundance. Rain-forest control sites had the highest bat species diversity and richness, and contributed more to total diversity than did secondary forest. Bat diversity was similar between secondary forest patches largely enclosed by rain forest and their controls, but higher diversity, richness, and contribution to total diversity were recorded in largely enclosed patches compared to partially enclosed patches. Partially enclosed patches were dominated by 2 small, frugivorous understory bat species (Carollia sowelli and Carollia perspicillata), whereas largely enclosed patches were dominated by 2 large-bodied, canopy-dwelling, frugivorous bats (Artibeus lituratus and Artibeus jamaicensis), which primarily feed on figs, a tree species that is abundant in rain forest. Bat diversity, richness, and contribution to total diversity were positively correlated with the proportion of area with rain forest, and bat abundance was negatively correlated with canopy openness.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1469-1479
JournalJournal of Mammalogy
Volume93
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Keywords

  • frugivorous bats
  • neotropical forest
  • atlantic forest
  • los-tuxtlas
  • community structure
  • species richness
  • isolated trees
  • body-size
  • diversity
  • habitat

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