Preprint Communication Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Relative Efficiency of Pitfall vs. Bait Trapping for Capturing Taxonomic and Functional Diversities of Ant Assemblages in Temperate Heathlands

Version 1 : Received: 22 December 2020 / Approved: 23 December 2020 / Online: 23 December 2020 (13:54:54 CET)

How to cite: Hacala, A.; Gouraud, C.; Dekoninck, W.; Pétillon, J. Relative Efficiency of Pitfall vs. Bait Trapping for Capturing Taxonomic and Functional Diversities of Ant Assemblages in Temperate Heathlands. Preprints 2020, 2020120590 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202012.0590.v1). Hacala, A.; Gouraud, C.; Dekoninck, W.; Pétillon, J. Relative Efficiency of Pitfall vs. Bait Trapping for Capturing Taxonomic and Functional Diversities of Ant Assemblages in Temperate Heathlands. Preprints 2020, 2020120590 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202012.0590.v1).

Abstract

Whereas bait and pitfall trappings are two of the most commonly used techniques for sampling ant assemblages, they have not been properly compared in temperate open habitats. In this study, taking advantage of a large-scale project of heathland restoration (3 sites along the French Atlantic Coast forming a north-south gradient), we evaluated the relative efficiency of these two methods for assessing both taxonomic and functional diversities of ants while accounting for a north south diversity gradient. Ants were collected and identified to species level, and 6 traits related to morphology, behavior (including diet, dispersal and maximum foraging distance) and social life (colony size and dominance type) were attributed to all 23 species. Both observed and estimated species were significantly higher in pitfalls compared to spatially pair-matched bait traps. Functional diversity followed the same pattern, with consistent results for both community weighted mean (CWM) and Rao’s quadratic entropy. Taxonomic and functional diversities from pitfall assemblages increased from North to South locations, following a frequently reported pattern at larger spatial scales. Bait traps can hardly be considered a complementary method to pitfall traps for sampling ants in open temperate habitats, as it appears basically redundant with pitfall traps at least on maritime cliff-tops of the East-Atlantic coast.

Subject Areas

sampling method; estimated richness; functional diversity; maritime cliffs; Western France

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