Biol J Linn Soc 58:125–157 Willis F, Moat J, Paton A (2003) Defin

Biol J Linn Soc 58:125–157 Willis F, Moat J, Paton A (2003) Defining a role for herbarium data in Red List assessments: a case study of Plectranthus from eastern and southern tropical Africa. Biodivers

Conserv 12:1537–1552CrossRef Wood SN (2006) Generalized additive models: an introduction with R. Chapman & Hall/CRC Press, Boca Raton”
“Introduction Despite their generally inconspicuous nature, terrestrial arthropods constitute one of the most prominent components of terrestrial ecosystems. They account for a large amount of biomass and represent a substantial proportion of all terrestrial biodiversity (Adis 1988; 1990; Stork 1988; Basset et al. 2004; Nakamura et al. 2007). The diversity and composition of terrestrial arthropod communities have widely been used as bio-indicators for a variety of processes and habitat characteristics, Rapamycin chemical structure including vegetation properties, river flooding regime, land use and management practices, ecosystem restoration, and soil contamination (e.g., Basset et al. 2004; Cartron et al. 2003; Gardner 1991; Irmler 2003). However, because of the large VX-809 abundance and richness, considerable time and taxonomic expertise are required for sorting terrestrial arthropods samples and identifying individuals to the species level (Basset et al.

2004; Caruso and Migliorini 2006; Gardner et al. 2008; Lawton et al. 1998; Moreno et al. 2008). Common alternatives proposed to reduce time and economic efforts include shortening the sampling period (Biaggini et al. 2007; Caruso and Migliorini 2006), using triclocarban morpho-species (Basset et al. 2004), selecting specific indicator species (Beccaloni and Gaston 1995), and using data of higher taxonomic levels

as surrogates for species (Andersen 1995). In general, the feasibility of higher taxonomic level surrogates is not agreed upon. Several studies point out that relatively coarse taxonomic data may give outcomes comparable to results obtained at the species level. For example, family richness was shown to be a good predictor of species richness for a variety of taxonomic groups, including plants, birds, and bats, in different regions (Williams and Gaston 1994). In Victoria (Australia), stream classifications based on aquatic macro-invertebrates showed similar results for family, genus and species level data (Hewlett 2000). Likewise, the discriminatory power of oribatid mites in a Mediterranean area for pollution and fire disturbance was similar at the levels of family, genus and species (Caruso and Migliorini 2006). In contrast to these findings, however, several other studies indicate that the species level is most appropriate for biological monitoring. For example, an investigation of Australian ant fauna revealed only a weak relation between genus richness and species richness, indicating that genera provide a poor surrogate for species (Andersen 1995).

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