The effect of dung and dispersal on postdispersal seed predation of Attalea phalerata (Arecaceae) by bruchid beetles

Rodrigo S. Rios, Luis Pacheco Acosta

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26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Low postdispersal mortality of palm seeds in tapir dung is hypothesized to result from the mechanical barrier provided by dung against bruchid infestation and/or from the distance to adult palms at which seeds are dispersed. We tested these hypotheses by distributing endocarps of Attalea phalerata Mart. ex Spreng. in experimental dung piles in Beni, Bolivia. Predation rates were significantly lower for seeds covered by dung than for exposed or partially covered seeds, but did not differ between seeds placed below and 50 m away from palms. Thus, dung, not short-distance dispersal, protects seeds against bruchid beetles, and may ultimately promote survival of palm seeds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)778-781
Number of pages4
JournalBiotropica
Volume38
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2006

Keywords

  • Attalea phalerata
  • Bolivia
  • Bruchids
  • Postdispersal seed predation
  • Seed fate
  • Tropical rain forest islands

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