Organisms sharing the same habitats may differ in small-scale microhabitat requirements or benefit from different management. In this study, set in Italy, we focused on two species of high conservation value, the cerambycid beetle Rosalia alpina and the bat Barbastella barbastellus, which often share the same forest areas and in several cases the same individual trees. We compared the potential distribution and, at two spatial scales, the niches between such species. The predicted distributions largely overlapped between the beetle and the bat. The niches proved to be similar on a broad scale, yet not on the plot one. Compared with B.barbastellus, R.alpina tends to occur at lower altitude in more irradiated sites with lower canopy closure and uses shorter trees with wider diameters. B.barbastellus occurred more often in trees within forest or along its edges, whereas R.alpina lays eggs in trees found in clearings. B.barbastellus plots were more frequent in forest, R.alpina plots in forested pasture and open-shredded forest. Overall, exposure to sun influenced more critically site and tree selection by R.alpina, as a warm microclimate is essential for larval development. Although B.barbastellus reproduction may be favored by warmer roosting conditions, bats may also find such conditions in dense forest and in strongly irradiated cavities high up in tall trees that project above the canopy. We emphasize that subtle differences in the ecological requirements of syntopic taxa could be missed at broad scales, so multiple-scale assessment is always advisable. ©

Protecting one, protecting both? Scale-dependent ecological differences in two species using dead trees, the rosalia longicorn beetle and the barbastelle bat

RUSSO, DANILO;SMERALDO, SONIA;GARONNA, ANTONIO PIETRO;BOSSO, LUCIANO
2015

Abstract

Organisms sharing the same habitats may differ in small-scale microhabitat requirements or benefit from different management. In this study, set in Italy, we focused on two species of high conservation value, the cerambycid beetle Rosalia alpina and the bat Barbastella barbastellus, which often share the same forest areas and in several cases the same individual trees. We compared the potential distribution and, at two spatial scales, the niches between such species. The predicted distributions largely overlapped between the beetle and the bat. The niches proved to be similar on a broad scale, yet not on the plot one. Compared with B.barbastellus, R.alpina tends to occur at lower altitude in more irradiated sites with lower canopy closure and uses shorter trees with wider diameters. B.barbastellus occurred more often in trees within forest or along its edges, whereas R.alpina lays eggs in trees found in clearings. B.barbastellus plots were more frequent in forest, R.alpina plots in forested pasture and open-shredded forest. Overall, exposure to sun influenced more critically site and tree selection by R.alpina, as a warm microclimate is essential for larval development. Although B.barbastellus reproduction may be favored by warmer roosting conditions, bats may also find such conditions in dense forest and in strongly irradiated cavities high up in tall trees that project above the canopy. We emphasize that subtle differences in the ecological requirements of syntopic taxa could be missed at broad scales, so multiple-scale assessment is always advisable. ©
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/613217
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