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Ant Faunal Diversity of Bibhutibhushan Wildlife Sanctuary, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal, India

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The present study unfolds the diversity of ants of Bibhutibhushan Wildlife Sanctuary, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal, India. A total of 22 species under 13 genera distributed over 5 subfamilies could be recorded. These include three newly recorded species namely Leisiota frauenfeldi (Mayr) (Formicinae), Crematogaster (Acrocoelia) hodgsoni Forel (Myrmicinae) and Brachyponera nigrita Emery (Ponerinae) from the state and nearly 90.5% of the reported species are new for the district (marked*). Analysis of their zoogeographical distribution reveals that the fauna apart from being Oriental also includes some Palaearctic (72.73%), Australian (13.63%) and Ethiopian (4.54%) elements. The dominant functional group is constituted by the Subordinate Camponotini (36.37%) followed by Generalized Myrmicinae (22.73%), Tropical Climate Specialist (13.63%), Specialist Predator (9.09%), Opportunist (9.09%) and Dominant Dolichorinae (9.09%). Ants are mostly prevalent during Monsoon (81.82%), followed by Postmonsoon (68.18%) and Premonsoon (50.00%). Two species namely Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) compressus (Fabricius) and Oecophylla smaragdina (Fabricius) are recorded throughout the year. Ranking sequence of the most abundant species in descending order is: Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) compressus (15.01%) = Oecophylla smaragdina (15.01%) > Crematogaster (Acrocoelia) hodgsoni (12.91%). Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) compressus and Oecophylla smaragdina are the most dominant species. Data also reveals that both core and buffer zones conjointly offer a better combination of habitat requirement, as 12 species are common in both the zones. Highest no. of species are recorded from leaf litter and ground combined together (22 species) and 6 species are arboreal in nature. Shannon’s Diversity Index (α diversity) and Simpson’s Diversity Index both are higher in buffer zone. This reflects the habitat exploitation efficiency of the encountered species. As per Jaccard Index (β diversity) the similarity value of both the zones is only 0.55.
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  • Post Graduate Department of Zoology, Barasat Government College, 10, K.N.C. Road, Barasat, Kolkata – 7000124, India
  • Post Graduate Department of Zoology, Barasat Government College, 10, K.N.C. Road, Barasat, Kolkata – 7000124, India
  • IRDM Faculty Centre, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University, Narendrapur, Kolkata – 700103, India
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