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Willow (Salix x rubens) Invasion of the Riparian Zone in South-Eastern Australia: Reduced Abundance and Altered Composition of Terrestrial Arthropods

Heather Greenwood, Dennis J. O'Dowd and P. S. Lake
Diversity and Distributions
Vol. 10, No. 5/6, Special Issue: Plant Invasion Ecology (Sep. - Nov., 2004), pp. 485-492
Published by: Wiley
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3246751
Page Count: 8
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Willow (Salix x rubens) Invasion of the Riparian Zone in South-Eastern Australia: Reduced Abundance and Altered Composition of Terrestrial Arthropods
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Abstract

This study investigated the impact of invasion by an alien hybrid willow (the white-crack willow, Salix x rubens) on the abundance and diversity of terrestrial arthropods along the lower Tarago River in south-eastern Australia in spring and summer. Canopy arthropods were sampled by branch clippings, flying insects by sticky traps, and arthropod stream inputs by floating pan traps in willow-invaded and uninvaded river sections. Willow-invaded river sections had a significantly lower abundance and diversity of canopy arthropods, but the abundance and diversity of flying insects did not differ between willow-invaded and native sections. Overall input of terrestrial arthropods was lower in willow-invaded sections but this depended on sampling date. In general, differences in arthropod abundance between willow-invaded and native river sections were greater in spring than summer, which may reflect seasonal changes in resource availability in native river sections. Morphospecies composition also differed significantly between willow-invaded and native sections. These changes in abundance, diversity, and composition of terrestrial arthropods following plant invasion of the riparian zone may indirectly alter in-stream food webs and have important effects on higher-order consumers in the riparian zone.

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