Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

Termites in eucalyptus forest plantations and forest remnants: an ecological approach

Kern Junqueira, LucianeDiehl, ElenaBerti Filho, Evoneo

Changes in the composition and structure of plant communities may result from human actions, such as the intensive use of the soil for agriculture and deforestation for the plantation of eucalyptus forests. This article aims to reveal how such disturbances cause conspicuous, spatial changes in biodiversity and, consequently, in many features of the earths ecosystems, aff ecting termite diversity, mainly those of the geophagous group. The reduction in the abundance of these insect species, the so called soil engineers, causes a decrease in carbon content and an imbalance in the functional groups, thus infl uencing the rate of soil degradation and causing further changes in biodiversity. Key words: Termite diversity. Functional groups. Soil use. Forest disturbances.

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