Intermediate disturbance promotes termite functional diversity in intensively managed Vietnamese coffee agroecosystems
- 17 Downloads
The intensive agricultural practices used in coffee plantations have profound impacts on invertebrate biodiversity. We surveyed termite diversity in the central highlands of Vietnam and evaluated it relative to the in situ ecological conditions of the coffee farms. Two survey sites were established at farms that were in place for 1 month and 1, 3, 5, and 25 years at the time of sampling. In addition, two models were tested: the diversity–resource relationship and the diversity–disturbance relationship. Our results demonstrated that the loss of termite diversity due to land perturbation in newly cultivated coffee farms may be as high as 86% compared with the nearest forested site. Only two feeding groups of termite (Group II and Group III) were present in the study sites. Termite composition of young and old farms was similar, but they only shared 48% similarity and differed significantly from the composition of the 1, 3, and 5 year old coffee farms. Understory vegetation cover and moisture content were positively associated with the occurrence of Group II and III termites but negatively associated with soil bulk density. Termite species richness did not increase linearly with the increased biomass production (plant litter) that is characteristic of old coffee farms. In contrast, termite species richness and occurrence were related to the intensity of farm management. Farms subjected to an intermediate level of management intensity due to annual crop cultivation recorded the highest diversity. Our study highlights the importance of annual crop cultivation to enhance termite diversity.
KeywordsFeeding group Biodiversity loss Species richness Coffee monoculture Soil-dwelling insects
We would like to thank Yoko Takematsu (Yamaguchi University) for assistance in identifying termite specimens and anonymous reviewers whose comments greatly improved the manuscript.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
- Ahmad M (1965) Termites (Isoptera) of Thailand. Bull Am Mus Nat Hist 131:1–114Google Scholar
- Colwell RK 2013. EstimateS: statistical estimation of species richness and shared species from samples. Version 9. User’s Guide and application published at: http://purl.oclc.org/estimates
- Donovan SE, Eggleton P, Dubbin WE, Batchelder M, Dibog L (2001b) The effect of a soil-feeding termite, Cubitermes fungifaber (Isoptera: Termitidae) on soil properties: termites may be an important source of soil microhabitat heterogeneity in tropical forests. Pedobiologia 45:1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Hajian-Forooshani Z, Gonthier DJ, Marin L, Iverson AL, Perfecto I (2014) Changes in species diversity of arboreal spiders in Mexican coffee agroecosystems: untangling the web of local and landscape influences driving diversity. Peer J 2:e623. https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.623 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Lopez-Rodriguez G, Sotomayor-Ramirez D, Amador JA, Schroder EC (2015) Contribution of nitrogen from litter and soil mineralization to shade and sun coffee (Coffea arabica L.) agroecosystems. Trop Ecol 56:155–167Google Scholar
- Neoh K-B, Bong L-J, Muhammad A, Itoh M, Kozan O, Takematsu Y et al. (2017) The effect of remnant forest on insect successional response in tropical fire-impacted peatland: a bi-taxa comparison. PLoS ONE 12(3): e0174388. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0174388 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Nguyen D, Nguyen T, Trinh V, Nguyen V, Le V, Nguyen T, Vu V, Ngo T, Vo T (2007) Fauna of Vietnam, vol 15. isoptera—termites (in Vietnamese). Science and Technology, HanoiGoogle Scholar
- Philpott SM, Arendt WJ, Armbrecht I, Bichier P, Diestch TV, Gordon C, Greenberg R, Perfecto I, Reynoso-Santos R, Soto-Pinto L, Tejeda-Cruz C, Williams-Linera G, Valenzuela J, Zolotoff JM (2008) Biodiversity loss in Latin American coffee landscapes: review of the evidence on ants, birds, and trees. Conserv Biol 22:1093–1105CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Pinheiro J, Bates D, DebRoy S, Sarkar D, R Core Team (2017) nlme: linear and nonlinear mixed effects models. R package version 3.1-131, https://CRAN.R-project.org/package=nlme
- R Core Team (2017) R: A language and environment for statistical computing. R foundation for statistical computing, Vienna http://www.R-project.org/
- ter Braak C, Smilauer P (2012) Canoco reference manual and user’s guide: software for ordination (version 5.0). Microcomputer Power, Ithaca, NYGoogle Scholar