Interplay between local and landscape-scale effects on the taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity of aerial insectivorous Neotropical bats

López-Baucells, A, Rowley, S, Rocha, R, Bobrowiec, PED, Palmeirim, JM, Farneda, FZ and Meyer, CFJ ORCID: 2022, 'Interplay between local and landscape-scale effects on the taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity of aerial insectivorous Neotropical bats' , Landscape Ecology, 37 (11) , pp. 2861-2875.

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Context Human-modified landscapes are globally ubiquitous. It is critical to understand how habitat loss and fragmentation impact biodiversity from both a local habitat context and landscape-scale perspective to inform land management and conservation strategies. Objectives We used an experimentally fragmented landscape in the Brazilian Amazon to investigate variation in aerial insectivorous bat diversity in response to local habitat and wider landscape characteristics, applying a multiscale approach. Methods We conducted bat acoustic surveys at 33 sites, comprising old secondary forests and fragments of primary forest. Taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity facets were calculated within a Hill numbers framework. We analysed responses to fragment size, interior-edge-matrix gradients, as well as local vegetation structure, continuous forest cover, edge density and patch density across five spatial scales (0.5 km - 3 km) surrounding detector locations. Results Compared with continuous forest, secondary forest matrix around the smallest fragments harboured lower diversity. The overall negative effect of the matrix became less pronounced with increasing fragment size. In contrast, forest edges generally contained higher taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity. We found subtle scale-sensitive associations for FD, responding positively to forest cover (at the 1 km scale) and negatively to edge (1 km scale) and patch density (2.5 km scale). Conclusions Despite a low-contrast matrix of tall secondary forest surrounding fragments after ~30 years of forest recovery, aerial insectivorous bat diversity is not comparable to continuous primary forest. Assemblage functional diversity responds to compositional and configurational landscape characteristics at scales deserving further evaluation at guild and species level.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Ecosystems and Environment Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Landscape Ecology
Publisher: Springer
ISSN: 0921-2973
Funders: Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), Foundation for Research Support of the State of Amazonas FAPEAM, Bat Conservation International
Depositing User: Dr Christoph Meyer
Date Deposited: 12 Sep 2022 13:29
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2022 15:00

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