1Corresponding author; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Conservation Value of Cacao Agroforestry Systems for Terrestrial Herbaceous Species in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia
Article first published online: 19 JAN 2011
© 2011 The Author(s). Journal compilation © 2011 by The Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation
Volume 43, Issue 6, pages 755–762, November 2011
How to Cite
Cicuzza, D., Kessler, M., Clough, Y., Pitopang, R., Leitner, D. and Tjitrosoedirdjo, S. S. (2011), Conservation Value of Cacao Agroforestry Systems for Terrestrial Herbaceous Species in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. Biotropica, 43: 755–762. doi: 10.1111/j.1744-7429.2010.00741.x
- Issue published online: 2 NOV 2011
- Article first published online: 19 JAN 2011
- Received 18 March 2010; revision accepted 24 October 2010.
- terrestrial herbs;
- tropical forest
Tropical secondary forest and agroforestry systems have been identified as important refuges for the local species diversity of birds and other animal groups, but little is known about the importance of these systems for terrestrial herbs. In particular, few studies report how the conversion from tropical forest to technified cacao plantation affects the species richness and the community structure of herbs. We conducted surveys in 43 cacao plantations along the border of the Lore Lindu National Park in Central Sulawesi, ranging from agroforests to technified cacao, categorizing the plantations as rustic cacao, planted shade cacao, and technified cacao. We recorded 91 herb species. Of the 74 species determined to species level, 21 were also found in natural forests, while 53 were recorded only in agricultural habitats. Araceae was the most forest-dependent plant family while Asteraceae included the highest number of nonforest species. Overall, the presence of forest species was confined to moderately intensively managed rustic and planted shaded plantations. Distance from the forest, which has been identified as a crucial parameter for the diversity and composition of other taxa in cacao agroforests, only played a minimal role for herbs. Our study suggests that native forest herbs maybe more vulnerable to forest conversion than animal groups. The intensification of cacao plantation management increases the presence of weedy species to the detriment of native forest species.