Globally, most restoration efforts focus on re-creating the physical structure (flora or physical features) of a target ecosystem with the assumption that other ecosystem components will follow. Here we investigate that assumption by documenting biogeographical patterns in an important invertebrate taxon, the parasitoid wasp family Ichneumonidae, in a recently reforested Hawaiian landscape. Specifically, we test the influence of (1) planting configurations (corridors versus patches), (2) vegetation age, (3) distance from mature native forest, (4) surrounding tree cover, and (5) plant community composition on ichneumonid richness, abundance, and composition. We sampled over 7,000 wasps, 96.5% of which were not native to Hawai'i. We found greater relative richness and abundance of ichneumonids, and substantially different communities, in restored areas compared to mature forest and abandoned pasturelands. Non-native ichneumonids drive these differences; restored areas and native forest did not differ in native ichneumonid abundance. Among restored areas, ichneumonid communities did not differ by planting age or configuration. As tree cover increased within 120 m of a sampling point, ichneumonid community composition increasingly resembled that found in native forest. Similarly, native ichneumonid abundance increased with proximity to native forest. Our results suggest that restoration plantings, if situated near target forest ecosystems and in areas with higher local tree cover, can facilitate restoration of native fauna even in a highly invaded system. © 2013 Gould et al.
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© 2013 Gould et al.
Gould RK, Pejchar L, Bothwell SG, Brosi B, Wolny S, Mendenhall CD, Daily G. Forest restoration and parasitoid wasp communities in montane Hawai’i. PLoS One. 2013 Mar 19;8(3):e59356.