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Title: Firefly (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) diversity and distribution in Malaysia : ecological explanations and conservation requirements
Author: Badruddin, Nada
ISNI:       0000 0004 7651 7532
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2019
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Tropical forests support most of the biodiversity of the world, yet many groups including the fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) are still poorly understood. The research question addressed in this study is on the influence of logging and elevation on species diversity, distribution and abundance of tropical fireflies. Throughout the research, whether and how firefly community composition varied with habitat characteristics were identified. The use of a robust, quantitative analysis framework (iNEXT) to estimate firefly species richness and diversity was explored. A total of 229 transects in 26 forest compartments in Dungun Timber Complex and 110 transects at every 50 m elevation bands along a 1,900 m elevation gradient on five mountains located across the main mountain range of Peninsular Malaysia were sampled. From the sampling conducted, 23 species of fireflies, 17 of which are new record for Peninsular Malaysia and five new to science were identified. The males and reliably associated females of one of the new species, Pygoluciola dunguna was taxonomically described. Effect size of age of forest since logging was not found to be significant however twice logged forest showed a significantly lower recovery of firefly species. Canopy closure, leaf litter depth and number of water bodies were found to moderate their community composition and proximity to primary forest showed a large positive effect size on the firefly species diversity in forests recovering from logging. Fireflies were found to be restricted to certain elevational range of mountains and turnover of species was significant among forest types across elevations. This research is a first attempt, at least in Southeast Asia, to place focus on this sensitive, vulnerable, low diversity and low abundance taxa. While further benefits would be gained with increasing collections in wider range of habitats, these data have enabled a better understanding of tropical firefly and placed a good foundation for future firefly biodiversity and conservation work in the tropics.
Supervisor: Beckerman, Andrew P. ; Evans, Karl L. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available