Biodiversity Conservation in Agroecosystems: A Comparison of Surface-dwelling Beetle Diversity in Various Shade Coffee Production Systems in Costa Rica
Beetle diversity was determined in six coffee agroecosystems representing a spectrum of structural complexity including (in increasing order) a chemical free site without shade, Poró (Erythrina poeppigiana), Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus deglupta), Amarillón (Terminalia amazonia), Banana (Musa spp.), and a control site at Los Cusingos Neotropical Bird Sanctuary. At each site beetles were collected using pitfall traps while leaf litter quantities and soil properties were recorded. Beetles were not related to structural complexity per se but were more strongly affected by soil and leaf litter characteristics. They showed relatively strong co-relations to increased leaf litter, increased soil fertility and decreased soil compaction.