EFFECT OF ANTHROPOGENIC LAND-USE ON ARTHROPODS DIVERSITY IN SUB-TROPICAL PUNJAB, PAKISTAN
A. Sajjad1,*, W. Akram1, S. Ali1, M. Ali2, M. I. Ullah3 and A. Ahmad1
1Department of Entomology, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur
2Institute of Plant Protection, MNS University of Agriculture, Multan
3Department of Entomology, University of Sargodha, Sargodha
*Corresponding author’s email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Present study was conducted to assess the effect of different land-use types i.e., agriculture, planted forest, grassy plots and desert on the diversity of soil crawling arthropods at the university campus of The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, (Punjab) Pakistan. Weekly data was recorded using pit fall traps during spring and fall seasons, 2018. The total sampling efforts of 192 hours in each land-use type resulted in 2842 individuals of 115 taxa. Hymenoptera -largely comprising of three ant species, Monomorium indicum, Monomorium pharaonis and Camponotus angusticollis - was the most abundant taxon in all the four land-use types followed by Coleoptera, Arachnida and Hemiptera. The maximum number of distinct species (only found in a specific landscape) was found in grassy plots and the minimum in agricultural landscapes i.e., 24 and 9, respectively. Only five species were found common in all the four landscapes i.e., M. indicum, M. pharaonis, C. angusticollis (ants), Lycosa poonaensis (spider) and Patanga succincta (grasshopper). Agricultural land showed the higher values of evenness and Simpson diversity indices than that of grassy plots, suggesting more even distribution of species. The lowest value of Chao-1 indexes -suggesting the minimum number of rare species in agricultural landscape- further confirmed this finding. Results of present study suggest that agriculture is not a threat to soil arthropods biodiversity except some rare species. Moreover, since grassy plots and forests exhibited greater values of Shannon-Wiener, Simpson and Chao-1 indices than desert, plantation of forests in the desert and establishment of grassy plots within or near the buildings may encourage diversity of soil arthropods and associated taxa in higher tropic levels.
Keywords: Biodiversity, Arthropods, Landscapes, Desert, Agriculture.