A preliminary analysis of weevil assemblages in the sub-Antarctic: local and regional patterns

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Curculionid assemblages were examined on the Prince Edward Islands and compared to those of the other South Indian Ocean Province archipelagos. Patterns found on both Marion and Prince Edward Islands are strikingly similar, despite the different glacial histories (extent of disturbance) of these islands, and indicate that interspecific competition is an important process underlying assemblage structure in the historically old epilithic biotope, whereas interspecific competition is unimportant in the young vegetated biotope, into which weevils are currently radiating. Findings support hypotheses concerning the importance and likelihood of interspecific competition in old, moderately-harsh, predator-free environments. There were major differences in assemblage structure between the archipelagos, which do not support the competition hypothesis, but which are best explained by the varying geological and climatological histories of the islands. These apparently contradictory findings are reconciled by taking scaling effects into consideration, and highlight the interaction between local and regional processes during the evolution of these assemblages. -from Author

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-98
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biogeography
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1992
Externally publishedYes

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