Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Alternative Title

Estructura de los artrópodos del suelo y las comunidades de plantas en los claros del bosque y un bosque continúo en Monteverde, Costa Rica


Lauren Breza



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Publication Date

November 2008


Several studies have confirmed that higher plant community richness facilitates greater arthropod community richness. The purpose of this study is to examine how plant community structure in continuous forest and light gaps impact soil arthropod community structure. In this study plant surveys were conducted for twenty plots, ten located in continuous forest and ten located within a forest gap. Along with plant surveys, a soil sample from each plot was collected in order to obtain soil dwelling arthropods. Arthropods were extracted from the soil first using a Burlese funnel, and then manually picked out of the soil. After all arthropods were obtained, they were identified to order and when possible to family. It was hypothesized that there would be a correlation between plant community structure and soil arthropod community structure, as well as a difference in diversity in continuous forest and forest gaps. The richness, evenness, and Smarg were calculated for plants in closed forest and in forest gap (H1' = 2.892, H2' = 2.406, t = 4.72, p < 0.0005). In addition, the richness, evenness and Smarg were calculated for soil arthropods in closed forest and in forest gap (H1' = 2.052, H2'= 1.896, t = 1.44, p = 0.10). There was no difference between soil arthropod diversity in continuous forest and forest gap and plant diversity did vary between continuous forest and forest gap. Regression analyses were also conducted, and the results suggest that there is no correlation between plant and soil arthropod community composition. However, there were obvious trends derived from the regressions that should be taken into consideration for future studies.


Algunos estudios han confirmado que una gran riqueza en las comunidades de plantas facilita una gran diversidad en la comunidad de artrópodos. El propósito de este estudio es examinar cómo la estructura de la comunidad de plantas en un bosque continuo y en los claros del bosque impacta a la comunidad de artrópodos del suelo. En este estudio se llevaron a cabo encuestas sobre plantas en 20 parcelas, diez ubicadas en el bosque continuo y diez ubicadas en los claros del bosque. Junto con las encuestas sobre plantas, también se llevaron a cabo encuestas sobre el suelo para obtener una muestra de los artrópodos que se encuentran en el mismo.


Arthropods, Species diversity, Cloud forest ecology, CIEE Fall 2008

Palabras claves

Artrópodos, Diversidad de especies, Ecología del bosque nuboso, CIEE Otoño 2008


14 pages

Geographic Location

Monteverde Biological Station (Costa Rica)

Ubicación geográfica

Estación Biológica de Monteverde (Costa Rica)

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute


English; Spanish

Media Type



Digital Only





Structure of soil arthropod and plant communities in light gaps and continuous forest in Monteverde, Costa Rica, November 2008



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