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Ground-Layer Spiders (Araneae) of a Georgia Piedmont Floodplain Agroecosystem: Species List, Phenology and Habitat Selection

Michael L. Draney
The Journal of Arachnology
Vol. 25, No. 3 (1997), pp. 333-351
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3705600
Page Count: 19
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Ground-Layer Spiders (Araneae) of a Georgia Piedmont Floodplain Agroecosystem: Species List, Phenology and Habitat Selection
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Abstract

Monthly pitfall trapping in 1990 and 1991 at Horseshoe Bend Experimental Area, Clarke County, Georgia, yielded 112 species of spiders belonging to 25 families. Examination of additional collections brings the site total to 145 species in 26 families, including southern or southeastern range extensions for Agelenopsis kastoni, Sphodros atlanticus, Bathyphantes pallidus, Eridantes erigonoides, Floricomus tallulae, Grammonota inornata, and Walckenaeria carolina, and a northeastern range extension for Paratheridula perniciosa. Ceraticelus emertoni and Neriene redacta are also reported from Georgia for the first time. The proportional distribution of pitfall-trapped species within families does not differ significantly from that reported for Berry's (1966) pitfall trapping in the North Carolina Piedmont (about 450 km away), suggesting regional similarity of the Piedmont ground-layer spider fauna. Data on phenology and relative catch of species among the four habitats sampled (conventional and no-tillage agricultural fields, grassy field borders, and the surrounding deciduous riparian forest) are given for the most abundant species. Habitat selection of 15 abundant species was statistically analyzed; most of the species' populations displayed strong preferences for particular habitats. It is clear that species "spillover" from adjacent habitats contributes to the faunal richness of each habitat, and that maintenance of a mosaic of habitats within an agroecosystem landscape maximizes spider biodiversity.

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