Data from: You don’t belong here: explaining the excess of rare species in terms of habitat, space and time
Sgarbi, Luciano F.; Melo, Adriano S. (2017), Data from: You don’t belong here: explaining the excess of rare species in terms of habitat, space and time, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.82fq5
Ecological communities are composed of a few common and several rare species. Many studies have evaluated the shape of abundance distribution curves, but few studies have assessed the causes of rarity. Using a dataset of stream macroinvertebrates, we investigated whether the excess of rare species in three focal communities of stones in riffles were common i) in other habitats at the same stream site and period of sampling (Environment), ii) in other stream sites in the same habitat and period of sampling (Space), and iii) in other years in the same stream site and habitat (Time). We observed that around 28% of the rare species were common in other habitats (Environment), stream sites (Space) or years (Time). Among the three factors, rarity was mostly explained by habitat type, whereas a significant portion of the rare species in riffles were common in pools, submerged roots of terrestrial plants or in partially submerged moss patches. This result suggests that the presence in non-optimum habitat is a strong determinant of the rarity observed in natural communities and most rare species are due to sampling artifacts or accidentally sampled transient species.
Carmo River catchment
Parque Estadual de Intervales
São Paulo State