Patrones de depredación de bellotas en especies del género <em>Quercus</em> (Fagaceae) a lo largo de un gradiente altitudinal en el Volcán de Tequila, Jalisco

Palabras clave

gradiente altitudinal


Se determinaron los patrones de depredación de bellotas en encinos que ocurren a lo largo de un gradiente altitudinal en el Volcán de Tequila, Jalisco. Se seleccionaron al menos 15 individuos reproductivos para cada una de las ocho especies incluidas en este estudio, siendo georreferenciados cada uno. Para la determinación de la depredación pre-dispersión se colectaron tres ramas del dosel en estado reproductivo para cada uno de los estratos del dosel arbóreo: superior, medio e inferior, eligiendo de cada rama de manera aleatoria un total de 50 bellotas (450 por individuo). Para la determinación de la depredación post-dispersión se colocaron tres cuadrantes de 1 m2 y en cada uno se colectaron aleatoriamente 450 bellotas o menos, acorde a la disponibilidad presente. En laboratorio se determinó el porcentaje de bellotas depredadas por invertebrados y por vertebrados. En nuestros resultados encontramos una relación negativa entre la altitud y el porcentaje de depredación de bellotas en las especies de encinos que ocurren a lo largo del gradiente altitudinal. Además se encontró que los niveles de depredación post-dispersión fueron mayores que los de pre-dispersión. También encontramos que las bellotas fueron más depredadas por invertebrados que por vertebrados. Por último, demostramos que las bellotas de encinos blancos son más depredadas que las de los encinos rojos. Nuestros resultados sugieren la hipótesis de que la variación en las condiciones abióticas como la temperatura y humedad presentes a lo largo del gradiente altitudinal podrían afectar los patrones de depredación de bellotas de encinos que ocurren en este gradiente. Mecanismos “bottom up” como la defensa química de bellotas pueden estar asociados a los patrones encontrados.



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