Biodiversity and abundance of terrestrial isopods along a gradient of disturbance in Sabah, East Malaysia

Hassall, M, Jones, DT, Taiti, S, Latipi, Z, Sutton, SL and Mohammed, M (2006) Biodiversity and abundance of terrestrial isopods along a gradient of disturbance in Sabah, East Malaysia. European Journal of Soil Biology, 42 (SUPPL. 1). S197-S207. ISSN 1778-3615

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Abstract

Connell's intermediate disturbance hypothesis predicts that the highest diversity is maintained at intermediate levels of disturbance. We have examined this hypothesis by observing differences in biodiversity of terrestrial isopods along a gradient of disturbance from two undisturbed primary tropical rainforest sites, to a logged site, a mixed native fruit orchard and a commercial oil palm plantation, in Sabah, East Malaysia. We describe a standardised protocol for the rapid assessment of isopod biodiversity on tropical forest floor sites and for measuring environmental variables to which we have related differences in species richness and relative abundance of the isopods. The results do not support Connell's hypothesis because there were no significant differences in diversity, species richness or equitability between disturbed sites and the nearest primary forests. The relative abundance of individual species was highest in the most disturbed environment. We suggest that this may be because particular species are well adapted to exploiting resources under the more ‘r’ selection conditions created by disturbance. Possible reasons for why the observations do not conform with predictions from the intermediate disturbance hypothesis are discussed. We conclude that Huston's dynamic equilibrium model is more appropriate than the intermediate disturbance hypothesis in predicting the effects of disturbance of tropical rainforests on these arthropod macro-decomposers.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: diversity,species richness,equitability,tropical rain forest,logging,deforestation,dynamic equilibrium hypothesis
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Science > Research Centres > Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Environmental Biology
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Resources, Sustainability and Governance
Depositing User: Rosie Cullington
Date Deposited: 25 Jan 2011 11:39
Last Modified: 25 Jul 2018 06:10
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/19536
DOI: 10.1016/j.ejsobi.2006.07.002

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