Monitoring Tropical Insects in the 21st Century
This review in the special issue of Advances in Ecological Research summarizes existing arthropod monitoring schemes and consider some innovative avenues for future research that promise to improve monitoring of insects in tropical ecosystems.
Image description: Workflow of the ForestGEO Arthropod Initiative monitoring scheme for long-term monitoring of population dynamics for common, poorly-known and species-rich insect assemblages.
Tropical insects are the most diverse animal group on earth, and play many vital roles in ecosystems. However, this group is increasingly threatened by various human activities. Despite this, the urgently needed long-term monitoring of tropical insect communities and populations is extremely rare. In this review, we summarise the existing scheme for monitoring this important group, and present a case study of the “ForestGEO” arthropod initiative. We also point out novel methods that can be incorporated into monitoring schemes to address future challenges, such as the inclusion of functional traits, measuring climatic tolerance, monitoring of interaction networks, exploring evolutionary drivers of ongoing changes, use of high throughput DNA sequencing, and machine learning. Expansion of current monitoring programs is a priority in the face of ongoing anthropogenic global change in the tropics.
Lamarre G.P.A., Fayle T.M., Segar S., Laird-Hopkins B., Nakamura A., Souto D., Watanabe S. & Basset Y. (2020) Monitoring tropical insects in the 21st century. Advances in Ecological Research 62 (series Tropical Ecosystems in the 21st Century): 295-330. DOI: 10.1016/bs.aecr.2020.01.004