Biodiversity and microclimatic divergence of chrysomelid beetles at 'Evolution Canyon', Lower Nahal Oren, Mt Carmel, Israel

Vladimir Chikatunov, Tomáš Pavlícek, Igor Lopatin, Eviatar Nevo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ninety species of leaf beetles (Chrysomelidae, Coleoptera, Insecta) were recorded fom the 'Evolution Canyon' microsite (sample area 7000 m2), Lower Nahal Oren, Mt Carmel, Israel. Species richness was significantly (P= 0.018) higher on the drier, climatically more fluctuating savanna-like, south-facing slope (SFS, 60 species, sample area 3000 m2) than on the cooler, wetter and climatically less variable north-facing slope (NFS, 44 species, sample area 3000 m2), as in other terrestrial taxa. More species were found common to the local xeric SFS at the Canyon and the regional southern desert areas (Judcan and Negev Deserts), than to the NFS and Galilee Mountains, respectively, suggesting that local patterns mirror regional patterns. Interslope differences in microclimate variability range indicate that this factor might be determinant of interslope species richness differences. Most species were collected in the spring (April; 47%) and least in the autumn (September; 3%) over the collecting period from March 1995 to June 1997. (C) 2000 The Linnean Society of London.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-152
Number of pages14
JournalBiological Journal of the Linnean Society
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Israeli Ministry of Science, grant no. 4147, by a grant from the German Federal Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Technology (BMBF) and the Israeli Ministry of Science (MOS) under the aegis of DLR-Projeckttragerschaft Gesundheitsforschung (Bonn), by AVI Fellowship to Dr TomᡠPavlícˇek, British Friends of Haifa University, the Israeli Discount Bank of Chair of Evolutionary Biology and the Ancell-teicher Research Foundation for Genetics and Molecular Evolution. We would like to thank Dr Mathew Spencer for valuable comments and help with language revision.


  • Chrysomelidae
  • Evolution ecology
  • Microgeography
  • Microhabitat
  • Zoogeography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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