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B2 - three field trips

In the subproject B2 we investigate the evolution of insects in arid environments with emphasis on desert specialist such as the hyperdiverse tenebrionid beetles and silverfish. In the last years, three field trips have been undertaken to gain an overview of the species composition, genetic diversity and colonization history of these insects in the Chilean Atacama. The third field work December 2018/January 2019 completed the survey with an extensive use of pitfall traps along the different sections of the Chilean Atacama (Coastal Cordillera, Central Depression, Precordillera, Altiplano).

A real surprise was the identification of the Gondwanan relict silverfish Maindronia as THE DESERT ANIMAL.  Maindronia was found in hyperarid environments where no other animals could be observed. The first member of a previously undescribed tribe of tenebrionid beetles was found exclusively under salt crusts along salars. This is another example of adaptation to extreme habitats in the Atacama region. We are deciphering the key abiotic and biotic factors that determine(d) the current distribution of such extremophilous taxa in the hyperarid areas of the Atacama. 

 

 

1 First Field trip 2017 Zuniga Ragionieri Blaeser Flores Predel 350pxFirst Field trip 2017 (Zúñiga, Ragionieri, Bläser, Flores, Predel)
Photo:
R. Predel

 

2 Newly described Gyriosomus 350pxNewly described Gyriosomus
Photo:
A. Zúñiga-Reinoso

 

 

3 Trap preparation in the Coastal Cordillera 350pxTrap preparation in the Coastal Cordillera
Photo:
R. Predel

 

4 Home of Maindronia 350pxHome of Maindronia
Photo:
R. Predel

 

5 Home of Lala 350pxHome of Lala
Photo:
R. Predel

 

6 Collecting insects in the Altiplano 350pxCollecting insects in the Altiplano
Photo:
R. Predel

 

7 Psectrascelis hot spot 350pxPsectrascelis hot spot
Photo:
R. Predel

 

8 Happy End 2019 350pxHappy End 2019
Photo:
R. Predel


Project



Contact

  Speaker:
Prof. Dr. Tibor J. Dunai
Institute of Geology and Mineralogy | University of Cologne
Zülpicher Str. 49b | 50674 Cologne
+49 (0)221 470-3229 | tdunai@uni-koeln.de
  Managing Director:
Christian Tiede
Institute of Geology and Mineralogy | University of Cologne

Zülpicher Str. 49b | 50674 Cologne
+49 (0)221 470-89833 | christian.tiede@uni-koeln.de
       
  Deputy Speaker:
Prof. Dr. Martin Melles
Institute of Geology and Mineralogy | University of Cologne

Zülpicher Str. 49a | 50674 Cologne
+49 (0)221 470-2262 | mmelles@uni-koeln.de
  Webmaster:
Tim Schlüter
Institute of Geography | University of Cologne

Otto-Fischer-Str. 4 | 50674 Cologne
+49 (0)221 470-3735 | webmaster@sfb1211.de

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