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Priorities in Conservation Biology: A Comparison between Two Polypore-Inhabiting Beetles
Mattias Jonsson, Mats Jonsell and Göran Nordlander
No. 49, Ecology of Woody Debris in Boreal Forests (2001), pp. 195-204
Published by: Oikos Editorial Office
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20113276
Page Count: 10
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We studied two tenebrionid beetles Oplocephala haemorrhoidalis and Bolitophagus reticulatus breeding in fruiting bodies of the wood-decaying fungus Fomes fomentarius. Bolitophagus reticulatus has recently been studied by several authors because this species was considered to be potentially threatened or because authors wanted to draw conclusions about the demands of the more rare species of the guild. We conclude, however, that B. reticulatus is not likely to become threatened in Sweden because 1) its occurrence at different sites was not affected by substrate continuity, 2) there are relatively high levels of gene flow between its populations and 3) because of unspecific substrate associations. Oplocephala haemorrhoidalis, on the other hand, was strongly restricted to localities with a long continuity of dead wood and showed lower levels of gene flow between its populations. We suggest that the main reason for the scarcity of O. haemorrhoidalis is a weak dispersal propensity, which hinders colonisation of new patches, although suitable substrate is abundant. We further suggest that Oplocephala haemorrhoidalis is suitable as an indicator species whereas B. reticulatus is not. Based on this example, we conclude that direct studies of the threats to rare species will remain essential in conservation biology and cannot be substituted by studies of common species in the same guild.
Ecological Bulletins © 2001 Oikos Editorial Office