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(Referência obtida automaticamente do Web of Science, por meio da informação sobre o financiamento pela FAPESP e o número do processo correspondente, incluída na publicação pelos autores.)

Assessing the Impact of Deforestation of the Atlantic Rainforest on Ant-Fruit Interactions: A Field Experiment Using Synthetic Fruits

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Autor(es):
Bieber, Ana Gabriela D. [1] ; Silva, Paulo S. D. [2] ; Sendoya, Sebastian F. [1] ; Oliveira, Paulo S. [3]
Número total de Autores: 4
Afiliação do(s) autor(es):
[1] Univ Estadual Campinas, Inst Biol, Programa Posgrad Ecol, Campinas, SP - Brazil
[2] Univ Estadual Sudoeste da Bahia, Lab Biossistemat Anim, Itapetinga, BA - Brazil
[3] Univ Estadual Campinas, Dept Biol Anim, Campinas, SP - Brazil
Número total de Afiliações: 3
Tipo de documento: Artigo Científico
Fonte: PLoS One; v. 9, n. 2 FEB 26 2014.
Citações Web of Science: 3
Resumo

Ants frequently interact with fleshy fruits on the ground of tropical forests. This interaction is regarded as mutualistic because seeds benefit from enhanced germination and dispersal to nutrient-rich microsites, whereas ants benefit from consuming the nutritious pulp/aril. Considering that the process of deforestation affects many attributes of the ecosystem such as species abundance and composition, and interspecific interactions, we asked whether the interaction between ants and fallen fleshy fruits in the Brazilian Atlantic forest differs between human-created fragments and undisturbed forests. We controlled diaspore type and quantity by using synthetic fruits (a plastic `seed' covered by a lipid-rich `pulp'), which were comparable to lipid-rich fruits. Eight independent areas (four undisturbed forests, and four disturbed forest fragments) were used in the field experiment, in which we recorded the attracted ant species, ant behaviour, and fruit removal distance. Fruits in undisturbed forest sites attracted a higher number of species than those in disturbed forests. Moreover, the occurrence of large, fruit-carrying ponerine ants (Pachycondyla, Odontomachus; 1.1 to 1.4 cm) was higher in undisturbed forests. Large species (>= 3 mm) of Pheidole (Myrmicinae), also able to remove fruits, did not differ between forest types. Following these changes in species occurrence, fruit displacement was more frequent in undisturbed than in disturbed forests. Moreover, displacement distances were also greater in the undisturbed forests. Our data suggest that fallen fleshy fruits interacting with ants face different fates depending on the conservation status of the forest. Together with the severe loss of their primary dispersers in human-disturbed tropical forest sites, vertebrate-dispersed fruits may also be deprived of potential ant-derived benefits in these habitats due to shifts in the composition of interacting ant species. Our data illustrate the use of synthetic fruits to better understand the ecology of ant-fruit interactions in variable ecological settings, including human-disturbed landscapes. (AU)

Processo FAPESP: 12/23399-3 - Interações entre formigas e plantas com nectários extraflorais: padrões comunitários ao longo de um gradiente latitudinal no bioma do cerrado
Beneficiário:Sebastian Felipe Sendoya Echeverry
Linha de fomento: Bolsas no Brasil - Pós-Doutorado
Processo FAPESP: 11/18580-8 - Estudos sobre formigas neotropicais: interações com insetos herbívoros, ecologia comportamental e organização social
Beneficiário:Paulo Sergio Moreira Carvalho de Oliveira
Linha de fomento: Auxílio à Pesquisa - Regular
Processo FAPESP: 07/54739-6 - A fragmentação florestal e a interação entre formigas e diásporos carnosos na Floresta Atlântica
Beneficiário:Ana Gabriela Delgado Bieber
Linha de fomento: Bolsas no Brasil - Doutorado
Processo FAPESP: 12/23671-5 - Interações entre formigas e plantas com nectários extraflorais: padrões comunitários ao longo de um gradiente latitudinal no bioma do cerrado
Beneficiário:Paulo Sergio Moreira Carvalho de Oliveira
Linha de fomento: Auxílio à Pesquisa - Regular
Processo FAPESP: 08/54058-1 - Ecologia e comportamento de formigas neotropicais
Beneficiário:Paulo Sergio Moreira Carvalho de Oliveira
Linha de fomento: Auxílio à Pesquisa - Regular