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Title: Ecology of insects in California chaparral

Author: Force, Don C.;

Date: 1990

Source: Res. Pap. PSW-201. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 5 p

Publication Series: Research Paper (RP)

Description: Studies stimulated by the International Biological Program showed total insect faunal biomass and diversity to be greatest in the spring of the year, which matches increased plant growth and flowering at this time. Ground-inhabiting beetle studies indicated the family Tenebrionidae to be overwhelmingly dominant in biomass, but the family Staphylinidae to be richest in species numbers. Ant studies showed the chaparral community to be rich in ant species; seed gatherers were particularly important. Flower-visiting insects are more abundant and more species-rich in chaparral than in any other type of California vegetation. Bees especially are abundant and diversified and are responsible for most pollination. Postfire succession studies of insects indicate that the abundance of predators and flower visitors sharply increases following fire; parasitic and phytophagous insects (other than flower-visitors) increase more slowly. Insect herbivory appears to affect succession minimally.

Keywords: biomass, chaparral, diversity, ecology, insects, California

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Force, Don C. 1990. Ecology of insects in California chaparral. Res. Pap. PSW-RP-201. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 5 p


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