Location: Great Basin Rangelands ResearchTitle: A comprehensive and cost-effective approach for investigating passive dispersal in minute invertebrates with case studies of phytophagous eriophyid mites
|KUCZYNSKI, LECHOSLAW - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|RADWANSKA, ANNA - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|KARPCIKA-IGNATOWSAK, KAMILA - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|LASKA, ALICE - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|LEWANDOWSKI, MARIUSZ - Warsaw University Of Life Sciences|
|MAJER, AGNIESZKA - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|RAUBIC, JAROSLAW - Adam Mickiewicz University|
|SKORACKA, ANNA - Adam Mickiewicz University|
Submitted to: Methods in Ecology and Evolution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/1/2020
Publication Date: 8/18/2020
Citation: Kuczynski, L., Radwanska, A., Karpcika-Ignatowsak, K., Laska, A., Lewandowski, M., Rector, B.G., Majer, A., Raubic, J., Skoracka, A. 2020. A comprehensive and cost-effective approach for investigating passive dispersal in minute invertebrates with case studies of phytophagous eriophyid mites. Methods in Ecology and Evolution. 82:17–31. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10493-020-00532-z.
Interpretive Summary: Dispersal is a fundamental biological process with consequences for individual fitness, population dynamics, population genetics and species distribution. However, studying dispersal is logistically challenging, particularly for microscopic organisms that disperse passively, like mites in the family Eriophyidae that are wingless and disperse on wind currents or phoretic vectors (i.e. larger animals like insects or mice) without any control over where they land. We present a comprehensive approach for studying passive dispersal of small invertebrates using wind and phoretic vectors. The protocol includes the construction of dispersal tunnels to study departure, wind-transience and vector-transcience, as well as methods for estimation of dispersal parameters using a customized statistical approach that suits the structure of the dispersal data. The tunnels were successfully used to investigate all stages of dispersal of wheat curl mite (Aceria tosichella; WCM), a small phytophagous invertebrate with high invasive potential. The tunnel apparatus was able to be modified to simulate both biotic (i.e. phoretic) and abiotic (viz. wind) dispersal vectors of WCM. Data produced accurately depicted the expected results of controlled experiments. The proposed devices are inexpensive ($50-$360, depending on modifications) and easy to construct from readily available materials. A broad array of possible modifications makes the tunnels appropriate for studying a wide range of invertebrate species and facilitates manipulation of both biotic and abiotic dispersal factors.
Technical Abstract: Dispersal is a fundamental biological process that operates at different temporal and spatial scales with consequences for individual fitness, population dynamics, population genetics, and species distributions. Studying this process is particularly challenging when the focus is on microscopic organisms that disperse passively, whilst controlling neither the transience nor the settlement phase of their movement. In this work we propose a comprehensive approach for studying passive dispersal of microscopic invertebrates and demonstrate it using wind and phoretic vectors. The protocol includes the construction of versatile, modifiable dispersal tunnels as well as a theoretical framework quantifying the movement of species via wind or vectors, and a hierarchical Bayesian approach appropriate to the structure of the dispersal data. The tunnels were used to investigate the three stages of dispersal(viz., departure, transience, and settlement) of two species of minute, phytophagous eriophyid mites Aceria tosichella and Abacarus hystrix. The proposed devices are inexpensive and easy to construct from readily sourced materials. Possible modifications enable studies of a wide range of mite species and facilitate manipulation of dispersal factors, thus opening a new important area of ecological study for many heretofore understudied species.