Deadwood and microhabitats play a fundamental role in many forest ecosystem processes. Deadwood provides the substrate for a multitude of wood-dependent organisms, as well as a variety of microhabitats. Deadwood is a key factor in maintaining the ecosystem functionality and increasing the overall forest biodiversity. In Mediterranean forests, the relationship between stand-structure attributes and species-diversity indicators is still poorly investigated. In this study, we hypothesized that the abundance of saproxylic species was influenced by(i) the composition and amount of deadwood, and (ii) the heterogeneity in types and density of microhabitats.The investigation was carried out in a broadleaved mixed forest located in Central Apennine (Italy), in whichsilvicultural interventions were interrupted for several decades. The experimental area extends on approximately240 ha; structural traits, deadwood and microhabitats were sampled on 50 plots of 530m2. Saproxylic beetleswere collected using window flight traps and emergence traps on decaying deadwood. We applied joint speciesdistribution models (JSDM) to quantify the relationship between forest attributes and the abundance of saproxylicspecies, explicitly including their functional traits (e.g., trophic level). Results demonstrated that microhabitats, living biomass, basal area and coarse woody debris had a significant effect of saproxylic beetles belonging to different trophic categories. Considering the conservation status, only the stand basal area significantly affected the abundance of Near Threatened (NT) saproxylic beetles. This study highlighted the importance of integrating multiple biodiversity indicators to find sustainable solutions for conservation purposes, unlike many studies on conservation-oriented management strategies, more frequently focused on independent forest biodiversity indicators.

Relationships between stand structural attributes and saproxylic beetle abundance in a Mediterranean broadleaved mixed forest

LOMBARDI, Fabio;
2019

Abstract

Deadwood and microhabitats play a fundamental role in many forest ecosystem processes. Deadwood provides the substrate for a multitude of wood-dependent organisms, as well as a variety of microhabitats. Deadwood is a key factor in maintaining the ecosystem functionality and increasing the overall forest biodiversity. In Mediterranean forests, the relationship between stand-structure attributes and species-diversity indicators is still poorly investigated. In this study, we hypothesized that the abundance of saproxylic species was influenced by(i) the composition and amount of deadwood, and (ii) the heterogeneity in types and density of microhabitats.The investigation was carried out in a broadleaved mixed forest located in Central Apennine (Italy), in whichsilvicultural interventions were interrupted for several decades. The experimental area extends on approximately240 ha; structural traits, deadwood and microhabitats were sampled on 50 plots of 530m2. Saproxylic beetleswere collected using window flight traps and emergence traps on decaying deadwood. We applied joint speciesdistribution models (JSDM) to quantify the relationship between forest attributes and the abundance of saproxylicspecies, explicitly including their functional traits (e.g., trophic level). Results demonstrated that microhabitats, living biomass, basal area and coarse woody debris had a significant effect of saproxylic beetles belonging to different trophic categories. Considering the conservation status, only the stand basal area significantly affected the abundance of Near Threatened (NT) saproxylic beetles. This study highlighted the importance of integrating multiple biodiversity indicators to find sustainable solutions for conservation purposes, unlike many studies on conservation-oriented management strategies, more frequently focused on independent forest biodiversity indicators.
Forest ecosystems; Saproxylic beetles; Deadwood; Joint species distribution models ; Broadleaved stands
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12318/2679
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