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Revista chilena de historia natural

Print version ISSN 0716-078X


JEREZ, VIVIANE. Diversity and geographic distribution patterns of coleopteran insects in desert ecosystems of the Antofagasta region, Chile. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2000, vol.73, n.1, pp.79-92. ISSN 0716-078X.

The coleopterologic fauna of the Antofagasta Region has been the object of diverse studies, but until now, an analysis of both the diversity and spatial distribution of the species was lacking. In this paper, the diversity of coleopteran species and their distribution ranges are given. The possible biogeographic relationships which could exist between the different described ecosystems of the region were analyzed. In this analysis, a coleopteran species inventory was elaborated based upon the literature, collected material from museums, and observations from field work. The spatial distribution of the taxa was established in relation to 11 described ecosystems for the Region and the endemic areas were determined using a biogeographic parsimony analysis. The taxonomic composition of Coleoptera is comprised of 21 families, 86 genera, and 167 species, with Tenebrionidae as the most diverse having 23 genera and 78 species. The Subdesertic steppe of the puna (57 sp.), Coastal desert of Tocopilla (50 sp.), Desert of Atacama saltflat (35 sp.), Coastal desert of Taltal (32 sp.), Aluvian Desert (22 sp.), and the Shrubery steppe (17 sp.) are the ecosystems that present the most diversification. However, the Coastal desert of Tocopilla (72%), Coastal desert of Taltal (62.5%), Subdesertic steppe of the puna (55.8%), Desert of Atacama saltflat (51.4%), Shrubery steppe (47%), and the Aluvian desert (36.3%) have the highest percentages of endemism. Three areas of endemism are defined for the Region of Antofagasta, which correspond to three ecosystems distributed in an altitudinal gradient: Coastal desert, Aluvian desert, and Tropical zone

Keywords : Coleoptera; Antofagasta; diversity; distribution; biogeography; parsimony; ecosystem; endemism.

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