We used Malaise traps to examine the aerial arthropod community in riparian habitats dominated by native willow, exotic saltcedar, or a mixture of these two tree species in central Arizona, USA. Over the course of three sampling periods per year in 2003 and 2004, native habitats had significantly greater diversity (Shannon-Wiener) and supported different arthropod communities compared to exotic habitats, while mixed habitats were intermediate in terms of diversity and supported an arthropod community statistically indistinguishable from the exotic site. The composition of arthropod communities varied significantly between the two years, and there was an approximately two-fold difference in richness and diversity. Overall, we documented complex interactions indicating that differences among the arthropod communities of riparian habitats may be driven not only by the composition of native and exotic tree species making up these habitats, but also by year and season of arthropod sampling.
Additional publication details
Temporal variation in the arthropod community of desert riparian habitats with varying amounts of saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima)