GROUND ARTHROPODS IN URBAN FOREST FRAGMENTS, PENINSULAR MALAYSIAWan F. A. Jusoh and Nor Rasidah Hashim
In many developing Southeast Asian countries, increasing research efforts are being put into understanding the ecology of urban biodiversity (flora and fauna) in order to improve the citys ecosystem or as part of biodiversity initiative. We present the findings of our research efforts on understanding the diversity of ground arthropods in two forest fragments in the tropical city of Kuala Lumpur. A total of 686 individual arthropods representing 79 morphospecies of 11 arthropod orders were captured from 24 pitfall traps. It was revealed that the primary forest with high disturbance sustains low species than the degraded secondary forest. The most abundant orders trapped were Hymenoptera (mostly Formicidae), Coleoptera, Orthoptera and Arachnida (mostly Araneae). Ants (Formicidae) were outnumbered other taxa in both study sites. There was also an inverse relationship between total morphospecies and vegetation types. However, none of these arthropod groups appeared to be associated with distances from forest edges. Further sampling efforts are therefore needed to confirm our findings. The results of this study, although preliminary, showed that these forest fragments add ecological values to the citys landscape and biodiversity, hence it is very important to conserve them.
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