Canopy assemblages and species richness of planthoppers (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea) in the Ecuadorian Amazon


  • Lawrence E. Barringer
  • Charles R. Bartlett
  • Terry L. Erwin


Auchenorrhyncha, Fulgoromorpha, planthoppers, canopy arthropods


Planthopper (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea) diversity inhabiting Neotropical terre firme forests is poorly known but may comprise one twentieth of the known World planthopper diversity. This study estimates planthopper diversity of the terre firme forest canopy using multiple measures. Samples were collected by canopy fogging at two localities in the Ecuadorian Amazon terra firme forest (Orellana province) Tiputini Biodiversity Station and Reserva Etnica Waorani. Fogging was conducted during three seasons (wet, transitional, and dry) between 1994 and 2006. The total planthopper collection encompasses 17,951 specimens in 15 families, and from these specimens 638 morphospecies were recognized. EstimateS diversity software was used to determine seven alpha diversity estimators that predicted an average alpha diversity of 793 morphospecies. Beta diversity estimators supported limited overlap between localities in the study and predicted that diversity of the sampling sites composes roughly 1/3 of the known planthopper diversity for all Central and South America.