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Table of Content
    Volume 29 Issue 4
    20 April 2021
    With more than 20,000 species have been described worldwide, bryophytes are the second largest higher plant group after angiosperms. Xishuangbanna is a key and hot spot region for biodiversity conservation in the world; however, the bryophyte diversity of this region remains poorly understood. To fill this gap, Quan et al compile a checklist of bryophytes in Xishuangbanna and make a preliminary analysis on the diversity and threat status of bryophytes in this region (for details see pages 545–553 of this issue). The pictures show the diverse morphological and structural characteristics of bryophytes collected from Xishuangbanna under a microscope. (Photographed by Dongli Quan)
      
    Original Papers: Plant Diversity
    Phenotypic plasticity of Alternanthera philoxeroides in response to simulated daily warming: Introduced vs. native populations
    Heyan Huang, Zhengcai Zhu, Jihua Wu, Qiong La, Yonghong Zhou, Xiaoyun Pan
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  419-427.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020387
    Abstract ( 331 )   HTML ( 38 )   PDF (869KB) ( 217 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims: The evolution of increased phenotypic plasticity hypothesis predicts that populations in the introduced range of an invasive species have evolved greater plasticity than populations in the native range. Studies of this hypothesis mostly focused on the plastic evolution of invasive plants to light, water, nutrients, neighboring plants, and natural enemies. However, there are relatively few studies focusing on the evolution of plasticity in plant growth and functional traits in response to warming. The few existing studies are concentrated in temperate regions and focus on growth-related traits, but relatively little attention has been paid to tropical regions and herbivory-related traits. To address this gap, we conducted an experiment with Alternanthera philoxeroides to study whether introduced and native populations of invasive plants differ in biomass, important functional traits and herbivory resistance in response to daily warming. Specifically, we addressed the following questions: (1) How do biomass, functional traits and herbivory damage of A. philoxeroides respond to simulated daily warming? (2) Do these responses differ between introduced and native populations of A. philoxeroides?

    Methods: We conducted a field experiment in Zengcheng District (113.87° E, 23.33° N), Guangzhou City, Guangdong Province in which we grew eight populations of the invasive plantA. philoxeroides collected from both the introduced range (China) and the native range (Argentina) under ambient temperature and a condition of simulated daily warming of 2℃. After eight weeks of growth, we harvested all plants and measured the following variables: (1) biomass (i.e. total biomass and storage root biomass), (2) functional traits (i.e. branching intensity, specific stem length, root-to-shoot ratio and specific leaf area, and (3) herbivory damage (i.e. relative feeding area and stem-tip feeding proportion).

    Results: Simulated daily warming of A. philoxeroides significantly reduced total biomass (-7.8%), storage root biomass (-12.8%), branching intensity (-11.6%) and stem-tip feeding proportion (-34.4%). The reduction in total biomass caused by the daily warming was greater in the introduced than in the native populations. Simulated daily warming reduced specific stem length and stem-tip feeding proportion of the introduced populations, while the native populations showed the opposite pattern. Regardless of simulated daily warming or not, storage root biomass (+31.5%), branch strength (+38.5%), specific stem length (+30.2%), root-to-shoot ratio (+24.5%) and specific leaf area (+20.0%) of the introduced populations were higher than those of the native populations, although stem-tip feeding proportion was lower (-35.8%).

    Conclusion: These results indicate that simulated daily warming of 2℃ in tropical regions is a stressor for the invasive plant A. philoxeroides. Biomass of the introduced populations has stronger plasticity in response to simulated daily warming of 2℃ than that of the native populations. In response to simulated daily warming, plasticity of plant shape-related traits (specific stem length) and herbivory-related traits (stem-tip feeding proportion) of the introduced populations shows the opposite direction to that of the native populations. Given that the reduction in biomass reduction and increase in herbivory increase were greater in the introduced than the native populations, future temperature increases due to global climate change may not be beneficial to the abundance of invasive plant A. philoxeroides in the tropics.

    Composition, time of introduction and spatial-temporal distribution of naturalized plants in East China
    Jing Yan, Xiaoling Yan, Huiru Li, Cheng Du, Jinshuang Ma
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  428-438.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020335
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    Background: Naturalization is the pre-invasion stage. Detailed research on naturalized plants is a fundamental first step for scientific management of alien species. This research is necessary for predicting and hence preventing such invasion caused by alien plants. Regional studies of naturalized plants are important for local governments to manage and control of such plants. As an important area for foreign exchanges, East China is facing pressures from imported alien plants being naturalized and then invading. This study aims to enrich the basic information about naturalized plants of East China, discussed the current deficiencies in the study of naturalized plants, and summarized the direction of future research.

    Methods: We conducted a comprehensive survey of naturalized plants in East China (Anhui, Fujian, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Shandong, Shanghai and Zhejiang provinces) from 2014 to 2019 using literature reports, specimen information, and taxonomic research. We analyzed the species composition and distribution pattern of naturalized plants in East China and conducted a comprehensive analysis of their first detected locations, introduced route, and the time when species were discovered.

    Results: We found that 299 species belonging to 181 genera and 62 families were naturalized in East China. The four most dominant families were Compositae (49 species), Leguminosae (35 species), Gramineae (28 species) and Amaranthaceae (25 species). The four most dominant genera were Amaranthus (16 species), Euphorbia(10 species),Ipomoea (9 species) andSolanum (9 species). There was a large diversity in species identified as naturalized, with a high proportion of plants coming from the Americas, and concentration in introduction routes. The Americas are the primary geographical origin of naturalized alien plant species, with more species originating from North America rather than South America. The route of introduction analysis revealed that 143 naturalized plant species were introduced unintentionally due to human activity and 156 species were introduced intentionally. Ninety-five frequencies were introduced as ornamental plants, which take up 55.2% of all the frequencies introduced intentionally. This suggests that introductions of plants for the purpose of ornamental use is the most common way for species naturalization to occur. A comparative study of the first detected locations show that the largest number of naturalized species were firstly introduced to South China (84 species) which mostly went to the Guangdong Province (33 species) and Hong Kong District (33 species). This was followed by East China (74 species), the Taiwan Province (72 species), Southwest China (19 species, mainly from Yunnan), Northeast China (15 species, mainly from Liaoning), Northwest China (14 species, mainly from Xinjiang) and North China (14 species, mainly from Beijing). There were only two naturalized species found in Central China. Jiangsu, Fujian and Zhejiang provinces were the main importing areas for East China. This may be due to many factors such as international communication, population density, climate similarity, disturbance levels, biological characteristics unique to species and investigation degree. Spatially, the species diversity of the Fujian Province (236 species) is significantly higher than that of other provinces, but little difference has been detected among other provinces. There are 57 species that are only distributed in Fujian (19.1%), which is the most when compared with other provinces. The amount of foreign exchange and climate similarity between native habitat and naturalized place may be the primary driver of current diversity and distribution pattern. Historically, the naturalized plants in East China showed an exponential growth trend after 1850. The growth rate is 1.5 species per year, and is currently in a period of rapid growth. In the 21st century, more than 80% of naturalized plants have been unintentionally introduced. Therefore, special attention should be placed on preventing the introduction of unintentional species.

    Proposal: Constructing an effective risk assessment system of alien plants based on an accurate and complete database of naturalized plants is one effective way to eliminate the risk of invasions from alien plant species.

    Taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of plants in a Castanopsis kawakamiinatural forest
    Bo Chen, Lan Jiang, Ziyang Xie, Yangdi Li, Jiaxuan Li, Mengjia Li, Chensi Wei, Cong Xing, Jinfu Liu, Zhongsheng He
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  439-448.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020399
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    Aims: Environmental heterogeneity of forest gaps leads to variation in taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of trees in these areas. Studying tree diversity in different sizes of forest gap communities can help to reveal the mechanisms that drive the formation and maintenance of biodiversity. This study took Castanopsis kawakamiigaps as the research object, and aimed to reveal the relationship between the taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of plants and its environmental influence factors.

    Methods: We examined different sizes of forest gaps in a Castanopsis kawakamii natural forest as to study the taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of plants, and used a generalized linear model (GLM) to explore the environmental factors driving the community assembly.

    Results: We found that the plant species and plant abundance in large gaps (> 200 m2) were higher than those of medium gaps ([50 m2, 100 m2)), small gaps ([30 m2, 50 m2)) and non-gaps (100 m2). The phylogenetic community structure of the large gaps tends to diverge, while that of the medium gaps, small gaps and non-gaps were affected by the combined effect of habitat filtering and competitive exclusion. The phylogenetic community diversity index (PD) was significantly positively correlated with species richness (SR), Margalef index and Shannon-Wiener index, which is related to the higher species composition of sparse species than dense species in forest gaps. Overall, forest gap size had a significantly positive effect on species diversity, and the soil total nitrogen content had a significantly positive effect on community phylogenetic diversity and phylogenetic structure.

    Conclusion: The formation of forest gaps increase the taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of trees in natural forests, with gap size and soil total nitrogen jointly driving tree diversity in these natural forest gaps.

    Effects of habitat fragmentation on population structure and dynamics of the endangered plant Pterospermum kingtungense
    Guoping Yang, Tao Wu, Yunfen Geng, Xiaoshuang Li, Jiabo Hao, Chunming Yuan
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  449-455.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020397
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    Aims: Habitat destruction and fragmentation are the leading cause of biodiversity loss. Therefore, it is necessary to understand the effect of fragmentation on plant population dynamics. The present study compared the population structure and dynamics of the endangered plant Pterospermum kingtungense in fragmented habitats of different sizes (5-ha and 15-ha) and continuous forests. We sought to identify the key life history stages that affect the population dynamics of P. kingtungense, with the goal of the providing a scientific basis for the formulation of endangered plant protection and management strategies.

    Methods: Censuses were conducted over a one-year (2018-2019) period in three 50 m × 100 m sampling plots in each of the three habitats. All P. kingtungense plants were measured for DBH (diameter at breast height, but ground diameter for seedlings and saplings), height, survival, and seedling replenishment. Based on the investigated demographic parameters, annual transition matrices were established for each habitat to predict the population dynamics, and the relative contribution of the population demographic parameters to the population growth rate was quantified by the elastic analysis method of the matrix model.

    Results: Across the two years, we recorded an average of 33.5, 82 and 87.5 P. kingtungense individuals in the 5-ha fragment, 15-ha fragment and continuous forest plots, respectively. Saplings dominated in the three habitats, but seedlings and big trees (comprising subadult and adult) are scarce in the 5-ha forest fragment, while seedlings are abundant in the 15-ha forest fragment. The population growth rate of P. kingtungense was equal to (15-ha fragment) or approaching (5-ha fragment and continuous forests) one, suggesting that P. kingtungense populations were stable in different size fragments and continuous forests. This stability is mainly due to the high survival rates of the populations in each life cycle stages. The survival rates of adult and subadult stages contribute substantially to the population growth rate, and these are the key life cycle stages affecting population dynamics in this species. Thus the protection of large trees (i.e., adults and subadults) is key to maintaining populations of the endangered plant P. kingtungense.

    Conclusion: Our findings reveal that the population size of P. kingtungense decreased and its population structure altered in the small fragmented habitat, but the effect on the population dynamics may not yet have shown themselves. Therefore, it is feasible and valuable to protect and restore the endangered plant populations even in small, fragmented habitats.

    Height-diameter models based on branch wood density classification for the south subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest of Dinghushan
    Jiantan Zhang, Yanpeng Li, Ruyun Zhang, Yunlong Ni, Wenying Zhou, Juyu Lian, Wanhui Ye
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  456-466.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020369
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    Aims: Knowing how to measure tree height conveniently and accurately has always been a concern for the fields of forestry and community ecology. Since wood density is closely related with tree growth, building a tree height curve model based on wood density could provide a new method for measuring tree height. This method would provide data support for vegetation investigation of forest dynamics plots and exploration of spatial differences in the radial and vertical distribution of community species resources.

    Methods: Here, we explored tree height using a curve model based on branch wood density classification using tree height data, diameter at breast height (DBH), and wood density of 4,032 individuals belonging to 119 species in a 1.44 ha plot in a south subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest in Dinghushan (DHS). First, we randomly sampled individuals, and divided them into model development (70% of the total sample size) and model validation (30% of the total sample size). We then classified wood density of all individuals into one of several categories using a cluster analysis. Second, we built a tree height-DBH model for different classifications based on modeling samples using five common theoretical growth equations (Richards, Korf, Logistic, Gompertz and Weibull equations). We estimated the fitting accuracy using the root mean squared error (RMSE) and Akaike information criterion (AIC). A smaller RMSE index and AIC index indicated the best fitting effect. Third, we determined the most optimal models based on the one model with the smallest mean average absolute error (MAE) and RMSE index. Finally, we established tree height curve models using species classification and compared the differences between models based on wood density and species classifications using the MAE index and RMSE index.

    Result: Results suggest that when the classification order of cluster analysis was 4, the SSI (simple structure index) value was the largest, so the individual wood density of the plot was unevenly divided into four categories: [0.06, 0.31), [0.31, 0.45), [0.45, 0.57), and [0.57, 0.82]. There was little difference when fitting the five equations and all the parameter values were extremely significant. Models based on wood density classification corresponding to the MAE index and RMSE index were consistent with the results of the modeling samples. The Gompertz equation and Weibull equation were selected as the optimal tree height models and the Weibull equation had the highest frequency equation for the DHS plot. Moreover, when comparing models based on wood density classification with species classification, the MAE and RMSE indices of the two models in 17 species were less different. In addition, since the estimation accuracy of models based on wood density classification and species classification was low, the tree height of Caryota maxima, Schima superbaand Castanea henryi was hardly to estimated.

    Conclusions: The tree height curve model based on wood density classification has a well-fitting effect and high estimation accuracy. It is also more convenient and generally used than the species classification model, which can realize the establishment of tree height curve models for many species easily. What’s more, models based on wood density classification directly reflect plant response to the environment from a mechanistic perspective, and represents the ecological trade-off among individuals with different wood densities in the vertical growth of trees. In summary, this model based on wood density classification provides a new method for tree height prediction and can better serve production practices such as forest surveys and help with understanding scientific issues.

    Original Papers: Animal Diversity
    Effects of different grazing intensities on spider diversity in Saihanwula Grassland
    Yu Zhang, Luyu Wang, Changlin Xiang, Meichun Duan, Zhisheng Zhang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  467-476.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020214
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    Aims: As the main consumers of grassland ecosystem, spiders are of great significance to maintain biodiversity and ecosystem function in grasslands. Grazing is the most common way for humans to exploit grasslands, so it is ecologically important to understand the effects of grazing on the spider diversity. In this study, we selected five sample plots that varied in their grazing intensity in the Saihanwula Grassland in Inner Mongolia.

    Methods: We analyzed differences in spider diversity and species composition among these five sample sites using one-way analysis of variance tests and non-metric multidimensional scale analysis (NMDS) and analysis of similarities (ANOSIM), respectively. We also evaluated the effect of vegetation height on spider biodiversity using a correlation analysis.

    Results: Spider biodiversity in heavily grazed sites is significantly lower than in non-grazed and lightly grazed sites. Grazing intensity also had a significant effect on spider richness and the abundance of garden spiders, but not on the number of wolf and jumping spiders. Web-building spiders were mainly affected by vegetation structure, while hunting spiders were more likely to be affected by potential prey availability. NMDS analysis revealed that species composition significantly varied across sites of different grazing intensities. Sites with lower grazing intensities had more similar composition to non-grazed sites than sites that were heavily grazed. The correlation analysis showed that the height of grassland vegetation was positively related to spider biodiversity. Spiders from the family Araneidae (which build webs on plants), Thomisidae and Philodromidae (which ambush prey on the upper layer of plants) were highly correlated with vegetation height.

    Conclusions: Our results suggest that available resources and spatial heterogeneity of habitat could play a leading role in supporting high grassland spider diversity. Therefore, reducing grazing intensity can contribute to the maintenance of grassland spider diversity community composition, especially for web-building spiders that depend on the vegetation structure provided by intact grasslands.

    Comprehensive comparison of different sampling methods for arthropod diversity in farmland
    Meichun Duan, Ruxia Qin, Hongbin Zhang, Baoxiong Chen, Bin Jin, Songbo Zhang, Shaopeng Ren, Shuquan Jin, Shenghai Zhu, Jianing Hua, Yunhui Liu, Zhenrong Yu
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  477-487.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020034
    Abstract ( 314 )   HTML ( 7 )   PDF (971KB) ( 227 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims: Arthropod biodiversity in farmlands has considerable value in terms of pest control, pollination, and other ecological services. To adequately assess arthropod biodiversity in farmlands, a fundamental step to select appropriate, accurate, and efficient sampling methods and identify appropriate indicator taxa.

    Methods: Here, we compared several arthropod sampling methods in different types of agricultural habitats within organic managed and conventional managed farmland, including the surface trap cup method, coloured pan traps, the sweeping method, visual counting, and the vacuum-suction method. We compared the capture efficiency, economic costs, and response sensitivity of each method for different species assemblages.

    Results: We found that the surface trap cup method and coloured pan traps had the highest capture efficiency, followed by the sweeping method, the vacuum-suction method, and visual counting, which had the lowest capture efficiency. Coloured pan traps was more efficient at capturing carabids, spiders, bees, and ladybugs. The surface trap cup method was mainly applicable to sampling ground spiders and carabids. The sweeping method was also effective at sampling spiders and ladybugs. In terms of economic costs, the most economical method was the surface trap cup method, which was used to capture carabids or spiders. The sweeping method had the highest cost due to its low capture efficiency of spiders. Sampling methods varied in their response sensitivity and were reasonably able to estimate abundances only of certain taxa (e.g., the number of spiders and carabids by the surface trap cup method, the total number of specimens, the number of bees, and the number of ladybugs by coloured pan traps, and the number of Orthoptera and Hemiptera by the sweeping method).

    Conclusion: We further compared sampling methods after taking into account the economic value of the taxon, the difficulty of sampling operation, the difficulty of taxon identification, the degree of passive sampling, and whether the taxon was influenced by different individuals conducting the sampling. The most comprehensive method was the surface trap cup method targeting carabids and spiders. Using a combination of different sampling methods for multiple taxa is recommended to comprehensively evaluate and monitor overall farmland arthropod biodiversity, and our results suggest that the best combination includes sampling carabids and spiders using the surface trap cup method and sampling bees using coloured pan traps.

    Effects of transgenic rice H23 with BPH9 and Bar genes resistant to brown planthopper and herbicide on non-target organisms
    Sanhe Li, Kai Liu, Wenjun Zha, Huashan Xu, Peide Li, Lei Zhou, Aiqing You
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  488-494.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020295
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    Aim: In order to investigate the effects of transgenic rice H23 with BPH9 and Bar genes resistant to brown planthopper and herbicide on the safety of non-target organisms, we used Chilo suppressalis, Daphnia magna and Eisenia foetida as environmental bio-indicators.

    Methods: The survival and weight of C. suppressalis was examined on the 6th day after infestation at the tillering and jointing stage. Under indoor conditions, the survival rate and reproduction number of D. magna was investigated by feeding them H23 rice powder. We also measured the survival, weight and behavior of E. foetida after being fed with transgenic rice straw in artificial soil for 28 days. As control for these trials, we fed each species non-transgenic rice Guangzhan 63-4S.

    Results: The survival and single weight of C. suppressalis, the survival rate and reproduction number of D. magna, the survival, weight and behavior of E. foetida had no significant difference between H23 and Guangzhan 63-4S. H23 had no significant effect on the growth of all three organisms, as compared with that of the nontransgenic control.

    Conclusion: Transgenic rice H23 did not pose an ecological risk to C. suppressalis, D. magnaand E. foetida after short-term exposure.

    Reviews
    Effect of climate change on the distribution and phenology of plants, insect pollinators, and their interactions
    Yuhan Shi, Zongxin Ren, Yanhui Zhao, Hong Wang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  495-506.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020196
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    Aim: The impact of global climate change on ecosystems creates a pressing and significant challenge to society. Climate change is increasing the frequency and severity of extreme climate events, which have a direct impact on ecosystem productivity and service functions. Here, we conducted a literature review on research progress in this field, including analyses of interaction network structure, temporal and spatial distribution changes, and the importance of “rewiring” interactive relationships and functional traits.

    Progress: Recent research has focused on the effects that increasing temperatures have on plant-pollinators in two primary ways. The first is the change in plant and pollinator distributions, including the potential for extirpation of some populations. The second is the change in plant and pollinator phenology, or the change in timing of plant flowering and pollinator activity. Spatial or temporal changes in plants and pollinators under climate change may cause mismatches and potential losses of current plant-pollinator relationships. In addition, climate change may alter the functional traits and coupling between plants and their pollinators, which could affect the stability of their interactions.

    Outlook: We recommend that future research should increasingly focus on: (1) covering multiple scales of biodiversity, (2) long-term monitoring of plant-pollinator interaction networks, (3) measuring the fitness of important indicator species, (4) recording changes in the functional traits of plants and pollinators along spatial and temporal scales to help rewire and/or restore their interactions, and (5) evaluating the conservation status of key plants and their pollinators.

    Mechanisms regulating caste and behavior differentiation in social insects
    Hui Zhang, Qian Liu, Xiaolei Huang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  507-516.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020224
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    Background & Aims: Eusociality is a critical evolutionary innovation. Understanding the origin of eusociality and related regulating mechanisms has theoretical and practical significance to several research fields. A clear hierarchy and division of labor exists among individuals of social insects. The behavioral differentiation and extensive cooperation between castes are beneficial for their adaptation to complicated environmental changes. Understanding how social insects can produce individuals with differences in morphology, behavior and life-history characteristics is an important goal of much evolutionary and developmental biology research. With the rapid development of sequencing technology and bioinformatics, there have been many studies on the mechanisms underlying social insect behavioral differentiation. Here, we present recent advances on the environmental factors and physiological and molecular mechanisms regulating caste and behavioral differentiation in social insects by summarizing the current results of social insect studies, and propose the future research directions.

    Progresses: Both biotic factors (e.g., nutrients, pheromones, cuticular hydrocarbons) and abiotic factors (e.g., temperature, climate) can directly and indirectly affect the differentiation of insect social behavior and castes. Endocrine hormones, such as juvenile hormone (JH), ecdysteroids (20E), insulin-like peptides (ILPs), and neurohormonal bioamines, also play important roles. In addition, evolutionary changes in gene sequences or genome structure, including heritable differences and novel genes, as well as gene regulatory mechanisms, such as DNA methylation and differential expression of genes, can also affect the caste and behavior differentiation of social insects to different degrees.

    Prospects: We suggest strengthening the study of social behavior and regulating mechanisms in other social insect lineages, such as aphids and thrips, which are relatively understudied and which will improve the understanding of the origins and evolution of eusociality and social behaviors in insects.

    Advances in spider ballooning research
    Pengfeng Wu, Shuyan Cui, Abid Ali, Guo Zheng
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  517-530.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020301
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    Backgrounds: Population dispersal is important for avoiding resource competition and cannibalism in the same habitat, and for ensuring gene flow which has an evolutionary and ecological importance. Some wingless arthropods can achieve long-distance dispersal using their filaments (which is called ballooning). Spiders are important for terrestrial ecosystems and can play a significant role in pest control due to being carnivores. Ballooning is one of the most important dispersal modes for spiders and is believed to be important for speciation, niche differentiation and pest control. Yet, focus on the role ballooning plays for dispersal has been given less attention.

    Progresses: In this study, we review the research history of spider ballooning (which can be categorized into three periods) and summarize the progress that had been made which includes: the dominant groups and characteristics of ballooning spiders, understanding the three stages of ballooning (take-off, flight, and setting) and influencing factors, two prevalent theories explaining the mechanism of ballooning with four related models, and information on the collection of spiders as well as other research methods.

    Prospects: In order to exclusively understand the significance of ballooning for population dispersal, research emphases are being put forward to strengthen the identification of ballooning spiders, better understanding the relationship between ballooning data with environmental factors, and to explore the whole process of spider ballooning (e.g., take-off, flight, and setting). We hope this study will serve as an important reference for knowledge popularization, resource protection and utilization of ballooning.

    Progress in marine habitat mapping: Concept, methods, and applications
    Wenjia Hu, Qiulin Zhou, Bin Chen, Shengyun Yang, Jiamei Xiao, Jianguo Du, Hao Huang, Weiwei Yu, Zhiyuan Ma
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  531-544.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020176
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    Context: The ecological boundaries rather than the administrative boundaries are adopted in the Marine Ecosystem- Based Management (MEBM) guide to management practices. Marine habitat mapping aims to explore the distribution patterns of the marine environment, biomes, and species. This provides ecological boundaries for management actions like biodiversity conservation and marine spatial planning.

    Aims: Marine habitat mapping is an effective approach in using monitoring data for decision-making, which has become popular for research focused on marine ecosystem conservation and management. However, marine habitat mapping has only just begun in China. This article aims at reviewing domestic and foreign research progress of marine habitat mapping.

    Progresses: First, we explain the definition and connotation of marine habitat mapping. Then, we clarify the steps of marine habitat mapping and its applications for ecosystem-based management. The methods for marine habitat mapping were systematically summarized based on the aspects of habitat classification scheme, ecoregion delineation, and characteristics descriptions. Furthermore, we summarize the representative marine habitat mapping cases. By comparing the marine habitat mapping systems developed by different countries/regions, we proposed common characteristics across different systems. Finally, we present suggestions in interpreting the prospects of marine habitat mapping applications in China, providing scientific basis for China’s marine ecological spatial management.

    Bioinventories
    Bryophyte diversity and its threat status in Xishuangbanna
    Dongli Quan, Bin Yang, Wenzhang Ma, Liang Song, Ting Shen
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  545-553.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020216
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    Aims: With more than 20,000 species recorded worldwide, bryophytes are no doubt the second largest higher plant group after angiosperms. We aim to understand the bryophyte diversity of Xishuangbanna, a key and hot spot region for biodiversity conservation in the world.

    Methods: This study compile a checklist of bryophytes in Xishuangbanna based on literature collection and field investigation. Then, a preliminary analysis was made on the diversity and threat status of bryophytes in this region according to different red lists.

    Results: The research results show that a total of 307 bryophyte specimens were collected in this field survey. Among them, 101 species belonging to 37 families, 70 genera including 5 newly recorded species (including infraspecific taxa) were finally identified. According to the complied bryophyte checklist, 661 species (including infraspecific taxa) belonging to 233 genera and 82 families were recorded in Xishuangbanna, accounting for 34.7% of the bryophytes in Yunnan Province and 20.5% in China. Among them, there are 200 liverworts belonging to 54 genera of 30 families, 12 hornworts belonging to 7 genera of 3 families, and 449 mosses belonging to 172 genera of 49 families, including 9 genera endemic to East Asia, one genus endemic to China, and 26 species endemic to China. The threatened statuses of bryophytes in Xishuangbanna were different in the red lists evaluated at different scales and different periods.

    Conclusions: Bryophyte diversity in Xishuangbanna is likely to be underestimated; many more species may be discovered from further investigations in the future. This study provides a basis for further study on the flora, conservation and utilization of bryophytes in Xishuangbanna.

    Camera-trapping survey on mammals and birds in Baihe National Nature Reserve, Sichuan Province
    Kai Huang, Yaqiong Wan, Jiaqi Li, Yujing Zhu, Zhiyu Sun, Wancai Xia, Dayong Li, Baoping Ren
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (4):  554-559.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020270
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    Aims: We aim to investigate the diversity and abundance of large mammals and birds in Baihe National Nature Reserve and surrounding areas in Sichuan Province.

    Methods: We divided the reserve into 1 km × 1 km grids using the Geographical Information System. We selected 110 grids according to habitat type and placed one camera-trapping per grid. We collected data from camera-trappings every 3-6 months from November 2018 to September 2019.

    Results: The surveys produced a total of 19,748 camera-days of data, including 55,858 pictures and videos, and 6,856 independent detections. We recorded 17 mammal species belonging to 4 orders and 12 families, as well as 33 bird species belonging to 5 orders and 12 families. Among the detected species, 5 species are listed as first-class National Protected Wildlife (Rhinopithecus roxellana, Moschus berezovskii, Budorcas tibetanus, Tetraophasis obscurus, and Lophophorus lhuysii), and 15 species are listed as second-class National Protected Wildlife (including Ursus thibetanus,Martes flavigula,Naemorhedus griseus, and others). Combined, these species accounted for 40.0% of the total recorded species. Two species are listed as Endangered (EN), five as Vulnerable (VU), and two as Near Threatened (NT) according to the IUCN Red List, together accounting for 18.0% of the total recorded species. Moreover, Moschus berezovskii is also listed as Critically Endangered in the Red List of China’s Vertebrates. The five mammals with the highest relative abundance index wereElaphodus cephalophus, Arctonyx collaris, Sciurotamias davidianus, Sus scrofa, and Rhinopithecus roxellana. The five birds with the highest relative abundance index were Tragopan temminckii, Urocissa erythrorhyncha, Myophonus caeruleus, Pucrasia macrolopha, and Trochalopteron elliotii.

    Conclusion: Our results show that the Baihe National Nature Reserve has high species diversity and many rare and endangered species. As the main protected species, the Sichuan snub-nosed monkey is abundant and widely distributed in the reserve. In addition, we detected some human and livestock disturbance in the reserve. We suggest that to preserve the high diversity and abundance of important mammal and bird species that the protected area should strengthen management and increase public awareness of the reserve.


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