Ecologia de morcegos do Parque Estadual Carlos Botelho: estrutura da comunidade e interações com plantas em área de Mata Atlântica
Barbosa, Gedimar Pereira
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Despite the historical exploitation and fragmentation of its native area, the Atlantic Forest still houses a significant diversity of wildlife species. Due to its importance for the maintenance of fauna representatives, getting knowledge of species diversity, and how they interact with each other and with the physical environment in strategic Atlantic Forest areas, is fundamental for effective species management and conservation plans. Thus, this study aimed to analyze the bat community from Carlos Botelho State Park (CBSP), a protected area with a high preserved Atlantic Forest and no ecological studies with bats until now. For this, we evaluated two aspects: (1) what is the influence of local altitude on bat abundance, species richness and diversity at CBSP and; (2) how the interaction network between bats and plants (flowers and fruits) is structured at the Park. In spite of varying considerably in abundance and species composition, species richness and alpha diversity of bats does not seem to be influenced by altitudinal variation found at CBSP area (1000 m). Measures of beta diversity indicate that the variation found in bat species composition between lower and higher altitude is driven more by species replacement between points (spatial turnover), than by orderly disaggregation of assemblages from the same species pool (nestedness). Through the analysis of a multilayer network of bat-plant interactions at CBSP, we found a nestedness pattern of interaction (NODF = 0.62, p < 0.0001) and few overlap on interactions between bats and flowers and bats and fruits. The results also showed that the bats A. geoffroyii, C. perspicillata and A. caudifer are central, acting as keystone species for the structure and maintenance of interaction network. In addition to filling an important knowledge gap for CBSP, by evaluating the bat species diversity in an area with no studies with bats until now, the results presented here reinforce the important of analyzing species diversity at spatial scales. Besides that, they help us to better understand the structure of bat-plant interaction networks in Atlantic Forests, and also which bat species are central to maintain these interactions. We suggest that more effective local conservation strategies should go beyond local diversity data, and also consider spatial variation and data on interactions between different species that comprise the natural systems.