The Importance Of Coleoptera

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1.0 INTRODUCTION Coleoptera is the largest group of insects in the world (Triplehorn & Johnson, 2005; Hill & Abang, 2010). The order Coleoptera is commonly used to describe the terrestrial habitats, mainly in the tropical forest (Erwin, 1982; Hammond, 1990; Stork, 1991; Chung, 2004). According to Hill & Abang (2010), 2, 000 species of beetles had been collected in Sarawak and most of them were from the families Cerambycidae and Chrysomelidae. Beetles are also known as the most successful insects as they have a pair of forewings with hard elytra that function to protect the hind wings when not in use (Hill & Abang, 2010). Besides, the hard wings also allow the beetles to hide into an enclosed place and cryptic habitats in order to escape from the predators (Hill & Abang, 2010). A thick and hard exoskeleton plates had protected their body very well. The study area is one of the protected forests in Sarawak. A large number of insects and beetles are expected to be higher in an undisturbed and unpolluted area (Muslim et al., 2010). This is one of the reasons why this area was chosen. The order Coleoptera was chosen because of their importance in ecosystem. Beetles have contributed too many ecological processes as they have become one of the vital fauna in global diversity in order to sustain various ecosystems (Dagobert et al., 2008). As a large proportion group in biodiversity, beetles play a vital role in trophic chains (Dagobert et al., 2008). Besides, they had become good indicators in environmental properties as their distributions are mostly influenced by the habitat changes (Dagobert et al., 2008). Coleoptera are occurred in both terrestrial and freshwater habitat (Lawrence & Britton, 1994). They have significant roles and... ... middle of paper ... ...r of species (Jeanneret et al., 2003; Dagobert et al., 2008). From the previous studies, beetles were proofed to be very sensitive to human activities (Dagobert et al., 2008). Human activities give the negative effect on the beetle abundance and diversity level in a changed habitat (Dagobert et al., 2008). One of the important factors in determining the diversity of communities is the effectiveness of the sampling methods used (Magurran, 1988; Chung, 2004). The uses of trapping method will influence the total number of beetles catches (Dagobert et al., 2008). Shannon index is basically used to evaluate the richness and evenness indexes of biodiversity and it is more elevated than the actual diversity (Dagobert et al., 2008). The relationship between this index and the sampling size will give the best evaluation of the population diversity (Dagobert et al., 2008).
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