Conserving insect assemblages in urban landscapes: accounting for species-specific responses and imperfect detection

Mata, L, Goula, M and Hahs, A 2014, 'Conserving insect assemblages in urban landscapes: accounting for species-specific responses and imperfect detection', Journal of Insect Conservation, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 885-894.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

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Title Conserving insect assemblages in urban landscapes: accounting for species-specific responses and imperfect detection
Author(s) Mata, L
Goula, M
Hahs, A
Year 2014
Journal name Journal of Insect Conservation
Volume number 18
Issue number 5
Start page 885
End page 894
Total pages 10
Publisher Kluwer Academic Publishers
Abstract Understanding how global environmental change impacts insect biodiversity is central to the core principals of conservation biology. To preserve the ecosystem services provided by insects in cities, it is crucial to understand how insect species are influenced by the degree of urbanization of the surrounding landscape. Using a hierarchical occupancy-detection model, we estimated the effect of urbanization on heteropteran bug species richness and occupancy, an approach that concurrently accounts for species-specific responses and imperfect detection. We found that species richness decreased along a gradient of increasing urbanization. This trend corresponded well with species-specific trends, as approximately two-thirds of all herbivores and predatory species experienced a strong mean negative response to urbanization. These results indicate that many species are potentially at risk of local extinction as cities grow and expand in the future. A second group of species, however, showed a weak mean negative response, indicating that they are ubiquitous urban species that thrive regardless of the surrounding degree of urban disturbance. Our research suggests that as cities develop, many of the species that are currently present will become less likely to occur, and therefore assemblages in the future are likely to become more simplified. In order to preserve or increase insect biological diversity in cities, it is critical to understand how individual species are influenced by urbanization. Our finding that insects display species-specific responses to urbanization has important repercussions for decision makers charged with preserving and improving urban biodiversity and the deliverance of ecosystem services in cities.
Subject Environmental Sciences not elsewhere classified
Wildlife and Habitat Management
Keyword(s) Bayesian inference
Heteropteran bugs
Hierarchical models
Imperfect detection
Species-specific responses
Urban ecology
DOI - identifier 10.1007/s10841-014-9696-7
Copyright notice © 2014 Springer International Publishing Switzerland
ISSN 1366-638X
Additional Notes This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedited version of an article published in Journal of Insect Conservation. The final authenticated version is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10841-014-9696-7.
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