Zapata, W., Vergara-Moreno, D., Carrillo-Pallares, M., Segovia-Paccinia, A., Navas S, G.R. & Malumbres-Olarte, J. (2023) Seasonal diversity of spider assemblages (Araneae: Arachnida) in the “Guillermo Piñeres” Botanical Garden, Turbaco–Colombia. Neotropical Biodiversity, 9(1), 17-28. DOI:10.1080/23766808.2022.2157948.
Climatic seasons have been shown to determine the temporal fluctuations in species communities of different ecosystems. Here, we assessed the diversity of spider assemblages in dry, transition and rainy seasons in the “Guillermo Piñeres” Botanical Garden (GPBG), Turbaco, Colombia. We collected spider assemblages between June 2018 and April 2019 through standardized day and night sampling methods for tropical ecosystems: looking up, looking down, beating and leaf litter sieving. In total, we collected 1585 individuals, belonging to 28 families and 112 (morpho) species. We calculated the effective species richness (Hill numbers) to evaluate the changes in diversity across seasons and used clustering and ordination methods (Jaccard index-based nMDS) to identify differences in the composition of the assemblages. Also, we compared the abundance and species richness of predatory guilds of the three seasons. The transition season showed the highest diversity with 94 morphospecies, an effective number of species of 48.7 and a dominance of 32.4 effective species. The clustering and ordination methods grouped the sampling events into three groups, each corresponding to a climatic season. The most abundant guild was the orb web weavers, with the highest value in the rainy season, while “other hunters” were the most species rich. Our results indicate that the spider assemblages in GPBG present a seasonal variation in diversity, probably influenced by climatic conditions. Understanding how these seasonal changes occur is necessary to develop forest management strategies for monitoring and management projects on the conservation of species assemblages according to the Convention on Biological Diversity.