Seasonal dynamics of diversity patterns are a key component to understand when assessing ecological communities across temporal scales given that long-term trends in diversity are often a product of the intricate dynamisms that occur at shorter temporal scales. However, seasonal trends in diversity are usually dependent on local-scale conditions, such as habitat types or the demographic characteristics of a given fauna, thus requiring better data coverage from consistent local-scale sampling. Furthermore, the assessment of seasonal dynamics in the context of functional diversity derived from trait-based data is often lacking in many important taxa such as insects. In this study, I quantify and describe the diversity of a Floridian subtropical aboveground ant community from monthly sampling across seasons using both contemporary taxonomic diversity metrics and functional diversity metrics. Results show differences in the timing of peaks across different diversity metrics. Species richness and abundances peak in months leading up to wet seasons while functional richness and divergence peak near the end of the wet season. This asynchrony is likely a result of species-specific differences in natural histories and demographic dynamics. While clear temporal dynamics are observed across diversity metrics, differences between wet or dry seasons were lacking for all metrics except functional richness. Fine-scale sampling data of seasonal trends in insect communities compiled from studies like this will be essential tools for future assessments and predictions of insect biodiversity.
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Vol. 51 • No. 2