|Publication Type:||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication:||1981|
|Journal:||Journal of the New York Entomological Society|
This study explores biogeographic patterns among insect communities which live in the water-filled floral bracts of Heliconia plants. Twenty-five collections from 13 Neotropical locations are studied using a principal components analysis where the collections are ordinated on the basis of the frequency of occurrence of the 23 most common insect morpho species. Heliconia species from the French Antilles show a depauperate insect community, apparently due to island isolation. Floral structure is important in determining the insect community: Heliconia species with small floral bracts have low species richness and only one Heliconia species with a pendant inflorescence has an aquatic or semi-aquatic insect community. Different Heliconia species collected from the same location do not necessarily have comparable insect species communities.