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Acta zoológica mexicana

On-line version ISSN 2448-8445Print version ISSN 0065-1737


GUEVARA, Roger; VILLEDO, Lorenzo  and  NAJERA, Andrea. Soil meso-fauna patterns and experiments on leaf litter mite fungivory: preferences, effects on fungal reproduction and decomposition. Acta Zool. Mex [online]. 2002, n.87, pp.01-15. ISSN 2448-8445.

We investigated patterns of community structure of soil meso-fauna in an tropical cloud forest. The leaf litter habitat and the actual soil below were found to support structurally different communities. Leaf litter appeared to be a complex, heterogeneous, habitat whereas soil was homogeneous. The abundance of mites and collembolans marked the main differences between leaf litter and soil, and given that a large number of species of these taxa are fungivorous their distribution patterns are discussed in relation to those factors that may determine fungal activity. In microcosmos experiments we found that a fungivorous oppid mite (Oppidae) affected the spore production of four species of fungi suggesting a shift in their combative abilities.

Keywords : Community structure; Fungivory; Leaf litter fungi; Oppidae; Selective feeding; Meso-fauna.

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