Date of Award

5-2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Entomology

Advisor

Culin, Joseph D.

Committee Member

Bridges , William

Committee Member

Benson , Eric

Abstract

This study examined the epigeic spider fauna in Kings Mountain National Military Park. The aim of this study is to make this information available to park management for use in the preservation of natural resources. Pitfall trapping was conducted monthly for one year in three distinct habitats: riparian, forest, and ridge-top. The study was conducted from August 2009 to July 2010. One hundred twenty samples were collected in each site. Overall, 289 adult spiders comprising 66 species were collected in the riparian habitat, 345 adult comprising 57 species were found in the forest habitat, and 240 adults comprising 47 species were found in the ridge-top habitat. Eight species richness estimators were used to analyze the data: ACE, ICE, Chao 1, Chao 2, first-order jackknife, second-order jackknife, bootstrap, and Michaelis-Menton means. Based on the 8 species richness estimators, the riparian habitat is predicted to have between 76 and 98 total species, the forest 67 to 96 total species, and the ridge-top has 55 to 72 total species. Species accumulation curves based on the 8 species richness estimators and sampling completeness indices suggest that the realized species richness of the riparian and ridge-top habitats are closer to the actual species richness than is the forest habitat. The Shannon diversity index suggests the spider community in the riparian habitat is more diverse and had more similar numbers of individuals in all species than either the forest or ridge-top habitats. The complementarity values and similarity indices suggest that the forest and ridge-top habitats have the most similar community structure. Comparisons of trap cover color show no differences in the numbers of spiders captured in traps with red versus blue covers.

Included in

Entomology Commons

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