Patterns of saproxylic beetle succession in loblolly pine

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Abstract:

• Patterns of insect succession in dead wood remain unclear, particularly beyond the first several years of decay. In the present study, saproxylic beetles were sampled from loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) logs aged between 1 month and 9 years old using both emergence traps attached to logs in the field and rearing bags in the laboratory.

• Species richness peaked within the first year as a result of a diverse assemblage of bark beetles, wood-borers and predators associated with young logs. After the phloem phase, there were no significant differences in species richness among decay classes.

• Beetle communities differed significantly among decay classes, with 25 and seven species being significantly associated with young and old logs, respectively.
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