Thesis

A comparison of dipteran diversity on native plants within and outside the California native plant nursery, Tranquillity, California

The Endangered Species Recovery Program (ESRP) is supervising land restoration in southwest Fresno County through the federally funded Land Retirement Project. The reclaimed land is adjacent to currently farmed land, and there is grower concern that native vegetation on the reclaimed land will function as a reservoir for insect pest infestation. The purpose of my research was to conduct an initial inventory of Diptera present on some of the California native plants that are utilized in habitat restoration by the ESRP in southwest Fresno County. Dipteran populations were sampled on three of the species of native plants grown within the ESRP�s native plant seed nursery and on the same three plant species that also occur within non-nursery sites in the general area surrounding Tranquillity. This research provided preliminary information on dipteran trophic guilds and the potential amount of ecological redundancy present within this ecosystem. It also provided baseline biodiversity data for future research. Future work will estimate species richness, abundance, and pest/beneficial significance from this baseline data. No significant difference was found between collection sites in taxa collected, trophic guild, number of Diptera collected, and pest status.

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