Effects of harvesting treatments on the ant community in a Mississippi River bottomland hardwood forest in west-central MississippiThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
We assessed effects that harvesting treatments had on the ant community in a Mississippi River bottomland hardwood forest in west-central MS. Ants were collected on Pittman Island using pitfall traps from July to November in 1996, 1997, and 2000. The forest received three replicated harvesting treatments in 1995, including: 1) uncut controls (check), 2) selection treatments removing 50 percent of trees, and 3) clearcut treatments. The ant community was also affected by environmental extremes, including flooding and drought. A total of six subfamilies, 20 genera, 33 species, and 19,269 individuals were collected. Cluster analysis revealed little difference in ant community diversity between check and selection treatments, but clearcuts were very different. A multi-response permutation procedure and indicator species analysis of 18 species that dominated the site, showed these species were influenced differently by the treatments. No species preferred undisturbed sites exclusively, but three showed strong preferences. Eight species did equally well in all treatments, six “liked” selection harvests almost as well as checks, and one preferred selection harvests. Red imported fire ants, Solenopsis invicta, increased substantially with time in all treatments.