You are on page 1of 1




with a relatively complete inventory of 125 years of sampling for this insect taxon (see Checklist in Beck & Kitching 2004). Hammond (1994) suggested using local samples for extrapolation to regional species richness for less well-known groups (see also Mawdsley 1996, Novotny & Missa 2000, Krishnamani et al. 2004). Figure 3.9 shows species accumulation curves (see e.g. Leon-Cortez et al. 1998, Moreno & Halffter 2000, Willott 2001) and estimators of true species richness (Colwell & Coddington 1994, Colwell 2000) of quantitative data. Both measures reach stable, apparently reliable values at 20-30 local samples, but miss the total known species richness of the island by ca. 10%. Some recently recorded species on Borneo might still be restricted to the regions of their initial invasion on the island (e.g. Daphnis nerii, see Beck & Kitching 2004), but quantitative sampling still underestimates regional richness slightly. Considering (1) that it will rarely be possible to use such a comprehensive set of sampling sites for analysis, (2) that Sphingidae are a relatively species-poor taxon of insects in tropical rainforest regions, and (3) that their -diversity and geographic autocorrelation of faunal composition is probably comparatively low due to their high dispersal abilities (chapter 4), estimates of regional species richness from local samples must probably generally be corrected upwards to an unknown extent (see also Ugland et al. 2003 for an alternative model of fitting species-accumulation data, Petersen & Meier 2003, Petersen et al. 2003 for similar results on European Diptera).

The relationship between local and regional species richness Phytophagous insects seem to form non-interactive local communities more often than strongly interactive (e.g. competition structured) ones (Strong et al. 1984, Cornell & Lawton 1992, but see Denno et al. 1995). In such communities without much biotic interaction, theoretical niche space is available in excess, and communities are not saturated with regard to species richness: The number of locally present species (as well as their identity) is more dependent on the size and 30 composition of the regionally available species pools (which is influenced by New Guinea Borneo biogeographical processes) than on local 25 ecological processes (Cornell & Lawton Peninsula Malaysia 1992, see also Shorrocks & Sevester 20 1995). Flores Plots of local vs. regional species richness can be a useful tool to assess if local species assemblages are saturated, or if the regionally available species pool determines local species richness (Srivastava 1999, see also Bell 2003). A linear relationship indicates the latter, while saturated communities do not exhibit any relationship or are better described by a curvilinear fit. However,
Mean Sobs (local)
15 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100

Sest (regional)

Figure 3.10 shows the relationship between estimated regional species richness (from Beck & Kitching 2004) and mean observed species richness from 26 local samples, using only forested sites below 1000 metres altitude. Only sites with more than 80 recorded specimens were used to calculate mean local species richness, day-active genera were excluded from local as well as regional data.