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The ant fauna of Timor and neighbouring islands: potential bridges between the disjunct faunas of South East Asia and Australia

Trainor, Colin R. and Andersen, Alan N. (2010). The ant fauna of Timor and neighbouring islands: potential bridges between the disjunct faunas of South East Asia and Australia. Australian Journal of Zoology,58(3):133-144.

Document type: Journal Article
Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 5 times in Scopus Article | Citations

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IRMA ID 81704288xPUB6
Title The ant fauna of Timor and neighbouring islands: potential bridges between the disjunct faunas of South East Asia and Australia
Author Trainor, Colin R.
Andersen, Alan N.
Journal Name Australian Journal of Zoology
Publication Date 2010
Volume Number 58
Issue Number 3
ISSN 0004-959X   (check CDU catalogue open catalogue search in new window)
Scopus ID 2-s2.0-77957197904
Start Page 133
End Page 144
Total Pages 12
Place of Publication Melbourne
Publisher C S I R O Publishing
HERDC Category C1 - Journal Article (DIISR)
Abstract This study examines the biogeography of the ant fauna of Timor and of stepping stone Nusa Tenggara islands to the north (Wetar, Atauro, Alor, Pantar and Lembata) that are geographically closer to continental South East Asia. Timor is of outstanding biogeographical significance because it is the second largest island within the Wallacean transitional zone between the closely approximated but geologically distinct Indo-Australasian and South East Asian continental plates. It represents a potential overlap zone between the otherwise disjunct ant faunas of Australia and South East Asia. A total of 154 ant species from 32 genera and six subfamilies were collected through a combination of systematic sampling in evergreen forest, dry forest, savanna and grassland at 23 locations in the Lautem district of Timor-Leste, and opportunistic collections at 29 sites elsewhere on Timor and on the neighbouring islands. The most species-rich genera were Camponotus and Polyrhachis (both 28 species), Tetramorium (14 species), Diacamma and Paratrechina (both 8 species). On Timor, 111 ant species were recorded, including 64 species in the Lautem district. The Timor ant fauna is dominated by taxa of South East Asian origin (76% of native species), and has only weak Australian affinities (18%). The latter figure is even smaller (14%) for the neighbouring islands, reflecting their closer proximity to South East Asia. In contrast to Australia, there was no clear disjunction between the ant faunas of contrasting tropical forest and savanna habitats sampled in Lautem district. This can be explained by the Timor ant fauna being dominated by South East Asian tropical forest taxa, with Australian savanna woodland taxa being poorly represented.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/ZO09113   (check subscription with CDU E-Gateway service for CDU Staff and Students  check subscription with CDU E-Gateway in new window)
 
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