Phenology of tropical dry forests in the Caribbean
Mateo Jiménez, Amelia L.
CollegeCollege of Arts and Sciences - Art
DepartmentDepartment of Biology
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Tropical dry forests exhibit difficulties in the identification of phenological patterns of plants and changes in functional traits of animals in response to climatic variables. Our goal is to determine how the phenology of woody plants and functional traits of bat communities are affected by the climate in the dry forest of the Jaragua National Park. A sampling plot was established where all diaspores were counted over 35 months, mist nets were used to capture bats. The results showed that our hypothesis was correct, plant dispersion syndromes were asynchronous. Zoochorous species peaks were in wet season vs anemochorous peaks in the dry season, responding to the requirements for plant dispersion. We found that relative humidity and precipitation were the climatic variables affecting the phenology pattern. The bat community showed a close relationship between functional traits and seasonality, where the dry season presented individuals with larger functional traits.