Fattorini, S., Bergamaschi, D., Mantoni, C., Acosta, A.T.R. & Di Giulio, A. (2016) Niche partitioning in tenebrionid species (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) inhabiting Mediterranean coastal dunes.European Journal of Entomology, 113, 462-468. DOI:10.14411/eje.2016.060 (IF2016 1,167; Q2 Entomology)
We analyzed the abundance, distribution and niche overlap of species (Pianka's Ojkindex) in tenebrionid beetle communities inhabiting different biotopes in Tyrrhenian and Adriatic sand dunes. The rank abundance distribution of the different species has the form of a geometric series in both communities as predicted by the niche preemption hypothesis for communities in harsh environments. Mean niche overlap values did not deviate significantly from null expectations, which indicates random interspecific interactions. These results, coupled with evidence of species habitat preferences, led us to conclude that the community organization of tenebrionid species inhabiting coastal dunes is determined more by habitat preferences than interspecific competition.