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Life Sciences - Entomology | Ecology, Systematics, and the Natural History of Predaceous Diving Beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae)

Ecology, Systematics, and the Natural History of Predaceous Diving Beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae)

Yee, Donald (Ed.)

2014, XVIII, 468 p. 148 illus., 90 illus. in color.

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  • First such reference that cover all aspects of natural history and systematics of Diving Beetles  
  • This book will have cross-system appeal, as anyone working with food webs of freshwater systems (e.g., ponds, lakes, streams) will benefit from an overview of the current knowledge of dytiscids  
  • This volume also will appeal to those working on aquatic beetles, aquatic predators, and beetles and predation in general  
  • Includes color photographs​

This comprehensive book provides one of the most complete overviews of the aquatic beetles in the family Dytiscidae, also known as predaceous diving beetles. Dytiscids constitute one of the largest families of freshwater insects with approximately 4,200 named species that come in a variety of sizes, colors, and habitat affinities. Although dytiscid adults and larvae are ubiquitous throughout a variety of aquatic habitats, and are important predators on other aquatic invertebrates and vertebrates, there are no compilations that have focused on summarizing the knowledge on aspects of their ecology, systematics, and biology. Chapters in this book summarize hitherto scattered topics, including their anatomy and habitats, chemical and community ecology, phylogenies and larval morphology including chaetotaxy, sexual systems, predation, dispersal, conservation, and cultural and historical aspects. This knowledge is potentially beneficial to anyone working in aquatic systems where dytiscids are an important part of the food web. Moreover, readers will gain a greater appreciation of dytiscids as model organisms for investigations of fundamental principles derived from ecological and evolutionary theory. Contributed chapters are by authors who are actively engaged in studying dytiscids, and each chapter provides color photos and future directions for research. 

Content Level » Upper undergraduate

Keywords » dytiscid - food web - freshwater - predator - systematics

Related subjects » Animal Sciences - Ecology - Entomology - Evolutionary & Developmental Biology

Table of contents 

Title: Ecology, Systematics, and Natural History of Predaceous Diving Beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae)

Title Page
Table of Contents

1. An introduction to the Dytiscidae: their diversity, historical importance, cultural significance, and other musings
1.1 Dytiscids past and present
1.2 Nature red in tooth and claw and mandible
1.3 Cultural notes
1.4 Final words
2. Bridging ecology and systematics: 25 years of study of larval morphology of world Dytiscidae
2.1. Introduction
2.2 General Morphology of Dytiscidae Larvae
2.3. Chaetotaxy Analysis: Methodological Approach
2.4. Ground Plan Pattern of Primary Setae and Pores of the Dytiscidae
2.5 Larval Chaetotaxy and Ontogeny
2.6 Bridging Ecology and Systematics
2.7 Summary and future directions
3. The phylogeny and classification of predaceous diving beetles
3.1 Introduction
3.2  Material and Methods
3.3 Results
3.4 Discussion
3.5 Diving beetle phylogeny and classification
3.6 Family-group classification of Dytiscidae Leach, 1815
3.7 Future directions
4. Morphology, anatomy, and physiological aspects of dytiscids
4.1 External morphology
4.2 Internal anatomy and physiology
4.3 Future directions5. Predaceous diving beetle sexual systems
5. Predaceous diving beetle sexual systems
5.1 Introduction
5.2 Sexual variation
5.3 Dytiscid sexual systems
5.4 Summary
5.5 Future directions
6. Chemical ecology and biochemistry of Dytiscidae
6.1. Chemical ecology of freshwater organisms
6.2. Chemical senses
6.3. Intraspecific interactions: Sex-Pheromones
6.4. Interspecific interactions
6.5. Dermal glands, epicuticular lipids, and body coloration by pigments
6.6. Microorganisms and dytiscids
6.7. Future directions7. Habitats
7.1 Defining habitats
7.2 Classifying habitats
7.3 Abiotic habitat conditions
7.4 Biotic interactions
7.5 Plant-dytiscid relationships
7.6 Habitat specificity
7.7 Future Directions
8. Predator-prey interactions of dytiscids
8.1 Introduction
8.2 What do dytiscids eat?
8.3 Selective predation and effects on community attributes
8.4 Cannibalism and Intraguild Predation
8.5 Non-consumptive effects of dytiscid predation
8.6 Dytiscids as predators of vector and nuisance species
8.7 Environmental constraints on predation
8.8 Dytiscids as prey
8.9 Future Directions
9. Dispersal in Dytiscidae
9.1 Introduction
9.2 The evolution, maintenance, and consequences of dispersal
9.3 Consequences of dispersal
9.4 On flight and wings and flightlessness
9.5 Proximate drivers of dispersal and how to find water
9.6 The macroecology of movement in predaceous diving beetles
9.7. Future directions – where do we (and the beetles) go from here?
10. Community patterns in dytiscids
10.1 An introduction to natural communities
10.2 Random vs. non-random distributions
10.3 Ecological similarity
10.4 Dispersal
10.5 Phylogenetic community composition
10.6 Summary and Future Directions
11. The conservation of predaceous diving beetles:  knowns, unknowns and anecdote
11.1 Introduction
11.2 Dytiscidae as a group worthy of conservation
11.3 The causes of loss
11.4 Drainage
11.5 Pollution
11.6 Encroachment
11.7 Climate change
11.8 Globalization, and the fourth horsemen of the apocalypse
11.9 Types of conservation
11.1 0 European Conventions – including a case-study in conservation legislation and
its consequences

11.11 Popularity, biodiversity and ecosystem services
11.12 Global Lists
11.13 Dumbing-down
11.14 The way ahead – “passive conservation” and the possible pitfalls of connectivity
1.15 Future directions

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