High Arctic Invertebrate Biogeography. Patterns and Colonization Processes since the Last Glacial Maximum
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The biogeography of Arctic terrestrial invertebrate species, and particularly processes creating and determining patterns of species distribution, have rarely been considered as a whole, but rather on a regional basis, resulting in a lack of an all- encompassing theory of invertebrate colonization of the Arctic. Additionally, dispersal and gene flow to high Arctic islands from populations already inhabiting warmer environments may enhance the survival of Arctic species under the warmer conditions forecasted by climate modellers. Hence there is a need for comprehensive phylogeographical, biodiversity and biogeographical studies to develop a deep understanding of the factors determining species distribution through time and space. Implementing a macroecological approach to this problem by combining community descriptions, field surveys, statistical biogeography and molecular ecology would provide an insight on the historical, geographical and environmental factors that define current invertebrate species distribution in the Arctic. I have tested the following hypothesis: 1) Environmental factors, such as climatic regimes, restrain Arctic invertebrate species distribution at both the landscape and geographical scales.2) Recent glacial history, glacial survival and colonization, have a made a detectible contribution to current distribution of invertebrate species in the Arctic. By addressing these key hypotheses, my research will unravel the history of colonization of the Arctic and develop a critical baseline knowledge from which predictions about potential future changes in biodiversity and geographic distribution of species can be made within the context of climate change. No indications of invertebrate glacial survival in the high Arctic are found on the strength of this thesis However, for none of the scales considered can current environmental conditions provide an adequate explanation of the observed biogeographical patterns. The biogeographical patterns described illustrate the limitations of environmental factors per se in the determination of species distribution ranges and indicate dispersal, including long distance dispersal, as an essential element shaping invertebrate species distribution across all geographical scales.
Paper I: Ávila-Jiménez, M.L. & Coulson, S.J. Can snow depth be used to predict the distribution of the high Arctic aphid Acyrthosiphon svalbardicum (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on Spitsbergen? BMC Ecology 11(25) October, 2011. The article is available at: http://hdl.handle.net/1956/5269Paper II: Ávila-Jiménez, M.L., Gwiazdowicz, D.J.,Solhoy, T.,Fjellberg, A., Dozsa-Farkas, K., Coulson, S.J., Ekrem T. Monson, F. The invertebrate fauna of the high Arctic island of Edgeoya, Svalbard: what can it tells us about the invertebrate colonization of the High Arctic? Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions.Paper III: Ávila-Jiménez M.L., Sands, C.J, & Coulson S.J. First evidence of Arctic collembola dispersal patterns as inferred by COI sequencing in Megaphorura arctica. (Tullberg, 1876). Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictionsPaper IV: Ávila-Jiménez, M.L. Coulson, S. J. A Holarctic biogeographical analysis unravels recent post- glacial colonization patterns. Insects 2(3): 273-296, June 2011. The article is available at: http://hdl.handle.net/1956/5305Paper V: Ávila-Jiménez, M.L. Coulson, S. J. Solhoy, T Sjoblom. A. 2010.Overwintering of terrestrial Arctic arthropods: the fauna of Svalbard now and in the future. Polar Research 29(1): 127-137, March 2010. Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions. The article is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-8369.2009.00141.xPaper VI: Ávila-Jiménez, M. L., Fjellberg, A. & Coulson, S. J. 2008. First record of Folsomia bisetosella Fjellberg, 2005 (Hexapoda, Collembola) from High Arctic islands. Norwegian Journal of Entomology 55(2): 129-130, 2009. Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions.Paper VII: Ávila Jiménez M.L., Gwiazdowicz, D.J., & Coulson, S.J. On the gamasid (Acari; Parasitiformes) mite fauna of Svalbard: a revised checklist of a High Arctic archipelago. Zootaxa. Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions.Paper VIII: Gwiazdowicz, D., Coulson, S. J., Ávila- Jiménez, M. L. 2010. First records of Zercon andrei Sellnick, 1958 and Zerconopsis muestairi (Scheweizer, 1949) (Acari, Mesostigmata) from Bjornoya. Norwegian Journal of Entomology 56(2) 117-119, 2009. Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions.Paper IX: Coulson, S. J., Fjellberg, A., Snazell, R., Gwiazdowicz, D.J., Ávila-Jiménez, M.L. On the Collembola, Araneae and Gamasida from the Kinnvika region of Nordaustlandet, Svalbard. Geografiska Annaler, Series A – Physical Geography 93(4): 253-257, December 2011. Full text not available in BORA due to publisher restrictions. The article is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0459.2011.00425.x