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Anolis lizards as biocontrol agents in mainland and island agroecosystems

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Our knowledge of ecological interactions that bolster ecosystem function and productivity has broad applications to the management of agricultural systems. Studies suggest that the presence of generalist predators in agricultural landscapes leads to a decrease in the abundance of herbivorous pests, but our understanding of how these interactions vary across taxa and along gradients of management intensity and eco‐geographic space remains incomplete. In this study, we assessed the functional response and biocontrol potential of a highly ubiquitous insectivore (lizards in the genus Anolis) on the world's most important coffee pest, the coffee berry borer (Hypothalemus hampei). We conducted field surveys and laboratory experiments to examine the impact of land‐use intensification on species richness and abundance of anoles and the capacity of anoles to reduce berry borer infestations in mainland and island coffee systems. Our results show that anoles significantly reduce coffee infestation rates in laboratory settings (Mexico, p = .03, F = 5.13 df = 1, 35; Puerto Rico, p = .014, F = 8.82, df = 1, 10) and are capable of consuming coffee berry borers in high abundance. Additionally, diversified agroecosystems bolster anole abundance, while high‐intensity practices, including the reduction of vegetation complexity and the application of agrochemicals were associated with reduced anole abundance. The results of this study provide supporting evidence of the positive impact of generalist predators on the control of crop pests in agricultural landscapes, and the role of diversified agroecosystems in sustaining both functionally diverse communities and crop production in tropical agroecosystems.

No MeSH data available.


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Mean number of coffee berries infested by the coffee berry borer (±1SE) in the presence and absence of Anolis lizards in laboratory settings
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ece32806-fig-0004: Mean number of coffee berries infested by the coffee berry borer (±1SE) in the presence and absence of Anolis lizards in laboratory settings

Mentions: In laboratory settings, individual anoles reduced coffee berry borer infestations by an average of 49% in Mexico (p = .03, F = 5.13, df = 1, 35) and 83% in Puerto Rico (p = .019, F = 8.82, df = 1, 10; Figure 4). The effects of sex and gravidity on reduction potential were nonsignificant (p > .05).


Anolis lizards as biocontrol agents in mainland and island agroecosystems
Mean number of coffee berries infested by the coffee berry borer (±1SE) in the presence and absence of Anolis lizards in laboratory settings
© Copyright Policy - creativeCommonsBy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5383488&req=5

ece32806-fig-0004: Mean number of coffee berries infested by the coffee berry borer (±1SE) in the presence and absence of Anolis lizards in laboratory settings
Mentions: In laboratory settings, individual anoles reduced coffee berry borer infestations by an average of 49% in Mexico (p = .03, F = 5.13, df = 1, 35) and 83% in Puerto Rico (p = .019, F = 8.82, df = 1, 10; Figure 4). The effects of sex and gravidity on reduction potential were nonsignificant (p > .05).

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Our knowledge of ecological interactions that bolster ecosystem function and productivity has broad applications to the management of agricultural systems. Studies suggest that the presence of generalist predators in agricultural landscapes leads to a decrease in the abundance of herbivorous pests, but our understanding of how these interactions vary across taxa and along gradients of management intensity and eco‐geographic space remains incomplete. In this study, we assessed the functional response and biocontrol potential of a highly ubiquitous insectivore (lizards in the genus Anolis) on the world's most important coffee pest, the coffee berry borer (Hypothalemus hampei). We conducted field surveys and laboratory experiments to examine the impact of land‐use intensification on species richness and abundance of anoles and the capacity of anoles to reduce berry borer infestations in mainland and island coffee systems. Our results show that anoles significantly reduce coffee infestation rates in laboratory settings (Mexico, p = .03, F = 5.13 df = 1, 35; Puerto Rico, p = .014, F = 8.82, df = 1, 10) and are capable of consuming coffee berry borers in high abundance. Additionally, diversified agroecosystems bolster anole abundance, while high‐intensity practices, including the reduction of vegetation complexity and the application of agrochemicals were associated with reduced anole abundance. The results of this study provide supporting evidence of the positive impact of generalist predators on the control of crop pests in agricultural landscapes, and the role of diversified agroecosystems in sustaining both functionally diverse communities and crop production in tropical agroecosystems.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus