BioRisk 5: 47-72, doi: 10.3897/biorisk.5.842
Do climate changes influence dispersal and population dynamics of dragonflies in the western Peruvian Andes?
Joachim Hoffmann
Abstract For nine dragonfly species (five aeshnids and four libellulids) all previous and verifiable data are related to the vertical climate zones and nature regions of the western Peruvian Andes and the Peruvian Pacific coast. Climate changes due to the El Niño and La Niña phenomena, as well as the global climate change have an influence on the different natural regions and also restrict aquatic biotopes. These changes influence the dispersal and behavior of some dragonflies and concern also loss of habitats as well as alterations of biotic and abiotic factors at and in water.
However new waters and habitats also are formed in most nature regions. Specialists like Rhionaeschna peralta, a species of high mountain regions and the Puna, are not able to react to habitat losses by adaptation, while other species such as R. maita and R. marchali do colonize new habitats also in higher altitudes. While the here represented aeshnids change their distribution ranges within the vertical nature regions of the west Andes, this is suspected for three of the four libellulids (Orthemis ferruginea, O. discolor and Pantala flavescens) as latitudinally respectively longitudinally immigrations and expansions of their areals.
For all species discussed, a seasonally earlier flight beginning is detectable, but for no species an extension of their flight time.
Altogether, the above named three libellulid do react more flexibly and faster to the alterations by climate changes than the majority of the five aeshnid species.
The influence of increased UV-B and UV-A radiation possibly affects also the site occurrence of some species in high altitudes of the Andes.