2015 - 18th Annual Steven Galovich Memorial Student Symposium

Presentation Title

Seed Fate of Ocotea floribunda in Monteverde, Costa Rica

Student Presenter(s) and Advisor

Luis Carlos Beltran, Lake Forest CollegeFollow

Location

Meyer Auditorium

Abstract

A fundamental requirement for the successful protection of endangered species is detailed understanding of how these species obtain their nourishment. For avian frugivorous like the Three-Wattled Bellbird (Procnias tricarunculatus), the Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus) and the Resplendent Quetzal (Pharomachrus moccino), the fruits of Neotropical tree species belonging to the Lauraceae family (in particular those within the genera Ocotea, Cinnamomum, and Beilschmiedia) are an essential part of their diet. After consuming these fruits, these birds will after some time regurgitate the seeds without the pericarp a species-specific distance away from the parent tree, thus functioning as primary seed dispersers (Wenny & Levey 1998). Studies on seed dispersal for these species have focused on the pattern of seed distribution and seedling survival as a function of the species responsible for the dispersal (Wenny & Levey 1998, Wenny 2000). I focused on the postdispersal fate of O. floribunda seeds by measuring giving up densities (GUD) between regurgitated seeds and regular seeds placed out in the open and under the canopy, and by using seed tagging to track seed fate for the regurgitated seeds. The regurgitated seeds in both areas on average appeared to be removed more than the regular seeds, but this difference was found to not be statistically significant. Out of 40 seeds tagged, six were buried and only one was consumed. While preliminary, these results suggest that a secondary stage of seed dispersal is present for O. floribunda, and warrant further investigation.

Presentation Type

Individual Presentation

Start Date

4-7-2015 9:00 AM

End Date

4-7-2015 10:15 AM

Panel

Scientific Studies

Panel Moderator

Naomi Wentworth

Field of Study for Presentation

Biology

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Apr 7th, 9:00 AM Apr 7th, 10:15 AM

Seed Fate of Ocotea floribunda in Monteverde, Costa Rica

Meyer Auditorium

A fundamental requirement for the successful protection of endangered species is detailed understanding of how these species obtain their nourishment. For avian frugivorous like the Three-Wattled Bellbird (Procnias tricarunculatus), the Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus) and the Resplendent Quetzal (Pharomachrus moccino), the fruits of Neotropical tree species belonging to the Lauraceae family (in particular those within the genera Ocotea, Cinnamomum, and Beilschmiedia) are an essential part of their diet. After consuming these fruits, these birds will after some time regurgitate the seeds without the pericarp a species-specific distance away from the parent tree, thus functioning as primary seed dispersers (Wenny & Levey 1998). Studies on seed dispersal for these species have focused on the pattern of seed distribution and seedling survival as a function of the species responsible for the dispersal (Wenny & Levey 1998, Wenny 2000). I focused on the postdispersal fate of O. floribunda seeds by measuring giving up densities (GUD) between regurgitated seeds and regular seeds placed out in the open and under the canopy, and by using seed tagging to track seed fate for the regurgitated seeds. The regurgitated seeds in both areas on average appeared to be removed more than the regular seeds, but this difference was found to not be statistically significant. Out of 40 seeds tagged, six were buried and only one was consumed. While preliminary, these results suggest that a secondary stage of seed dispersal is present for O. floribunda, and warrant further investigation.