The effect of fire on ant assemblages in the Gibson Desert Nature Reserve, Western Australia
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The invertebrates of the arid interior of Western Australia have been little studied. As part of a project investigating the effect of wild fire on vegetation in the Gibson Desert, ant species were also collected and analysed. A total of 71 ant species was identified from six replicated 250 m2 plots in an area within the Gibson Desert Nature Reserve. The six sites were established in recently burnt and long unburnt areas of three main vegetation types: Triodia basedowii grassland, Triodia shinzii grassland, and Acacia aneura woodland. Twenty-nine ant species occurred exclusively in recently burnt sites, 16 species were exclusive to the long unburnt sites and the remaining 26 occurred in both site types. Functional group analyses revealed a predominance of Subordinate Camponotini and Opportunists at the long unburnt sites whereas Dominant Dolichoderinae and Generalist Myrmicinae were more common in the recently burnt sites.
Reference Number: #J99
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