Urban habitat complexity affects species richness but not environmental filtering of morphologically-diverse ants
Alessandro Ossola, Michael A Nash, Fiona J Christie, Amy K Hahs, Stephen J Livesley
PEERJ | PEERJ INC | Published : 2015
Habitat complexity is a major determinant of structure and diversity of ant assemblages. Following the size-grain hypothesis, smaller ant species are likely to be advantaged in more complex habitats compared to larger species. Habitat complexity can act as an environmental filter based on species size and morphological traits, therefore affecting the overall structure and diversity of ant assemblages. In natural and semi-natural ecosystems, habitat complexity is principally regulated by ecological successions or disturbance such as fire and grazing. Urban ecosystems provide an opportunity to test relationships between habitat, ant assemblage structure and ant traits using novel combinations ..View full abstract
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Awarded by Australian Research Council
This project received funds from the Australian Research Council (ARC LP 110100686), the Australian Centre for Urban Ecology (ARCUE) and the Australian Golf Course Superintendent Association (AGCSA). AO is supported by MIFRS, MIRS and the Frank Keenan Fund Trust scholarships. AKH is supported by the Baker Foundation. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.