Santos-Silva, L.; Pinheiro, T. G.; Chagas-Jr, A.; Marques, M. I.; Battirola, L. D. (2018). Temporal and spatial variation of Myriapoda (Diplopoda and Chilopoda) assemblages in a Neotropical floodplain. Biota Neotropica. 18(2).
Myriapods constitute important edaphic macrofauna taxa which dwell in different trophic levels and
influence the dynamics of these environments. This study evaluated the variation in composition, richness and
abundance of edaphic myriapod assemblages as a function of the distribution and structure of flooded and non-
flooded habitats (spatial variation) and hydrological seasonality (temporal variation) in a floodplain of the northern
Pantanal region of Mato Grosso, Brazil. Sampling was carried out in three areas of the Poconé Pantanal, along an
altitudinal and inundation gradient consisting of inundated and non-inundated habitats and different vegetation
formations. Three quadrats (10 x 10 m) were delimited within each habitat type, where sampling was performed
using pitfall traps and mini-Winkler extractors during the dry, rising water, high water and receding water periods
of two hydrological cycles within the Pantanal (2010/2011 and 2011/2012). A total of 549 millipedes were
collected, consisting of 407 Diplopoda and 142 Chilopoda distributed in six orders, 12 families and 20 species. The
assemblages composition varied throughout the seasonal periods, indicating that the rising water and dry periods
differed from the high water and receding water periods. In addition to the variation between seasonal periods,
myriapod richness and abundance also varied in relation to areas consisting of different vegetation formations.
Thus, it can be concluded that the hydrological seasonality associated with the inundation gradient and different
vegetation types were determinant in the heterogeneous spatial and temporal distribution of myriapod assemblages,
validating that the conservation of these invertebrates in the Pantanal is directly linked to the preservation of
vegetation, and consequently, ecosystem integrity.