Neotropical Entomology

, Volume 46, Issue 2, pp 151–158

Environment and Spatial Influences on Aquatic Insect Communities in Cerrado Streams: the Relative Importance of Conductivity, Altitude, and Conservation Areas

Ecology, Behavior and Bionomics

DOI: 10.1007/s13744-016-0452-4

Cite this article as:
Godoy, B.S., Queiroz, L.L., Lodi, S. et al. Neotrop Entomol (2017) 46: 151. doi:10.1007/s13744-016-0452-4


The aquatic insect community is an important element for stream functionality and diversity, but the effects of altitude and conservation areas on the aquatic insect community have been poorly explored in neotropical ecozone. The lack of studies about the relative importance of space and environment on community structure is another obstacle within aquatic insect ecology, which precludes the inclusion of these studies in more current frameworks, like the metacommunity dynamics. We evaluated the relationship between the aquatic insect community structure at 19 streams in the Brazilian Cerrado and spatial and environmental variables, namely geographical distance among sites, stream altitude, chemical variables, and environmental protection areas. We partitioned the variance explained by spatial and environmental components using a partial redundancy analysis. The environment exhibited a strong spatial structure for abundance and number of genera, increasing these community parameters with elevated water conductivity. Only community composition had a large unexplained portion of variance, with a small portion constrained by environmental (altitude and conductivity) and spatial factors. A relevant point in the result was the streams with high conductivity were located outside of the conservation areas. These results suggest that the relationship between number of genera and abundance with environmental conditions is always associated with spatial configuration of streams. Our study shows that altitude is an important determinant of community structure, as it exerts indirect influences, and electrical conductivity directly determines community composition, and that some national parks may be inefficient in maintaining the diversity of aquatic insects in the Cerrado region.


Aquatic insects turnover altitude limnology spatial ecology conservation areas 

Supplementary material

13744_2016_452_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.2 mb)
ESM 1(PDF 1190 kb)
13744_2016_452_MOESM2_ESM.docx (140 kb)
ESM 2(DOCX 140 kb)

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
  • 475355/2007-5
  • 01/2014

Copyright information

© Sociedade Entomológica do Brasil 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • B S Godoy
    • 1
  • L L Queiroz
    • 2
  • S Lodi
    • 3
  • L G Oliveira
    • 4
  1. 1.Núcleo de Ciências Agrárias e Desenvolvimento RuralUniv Federal do ParáBelémBrasil
  2. 2.Núcleo de Ecologia de Insetos, HexapodaGoiâniaBrasil
  3. 3.Depto de EcologiaUniv Federal de ParáBelémBrasil
  4. 4.Depto de EcologiaUniv Federal de GoiásGoiâniaBrasil

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