The richness was higher in phytophagous (41 in the C and 60 in NC), followed by entomophagous (33 in the C and 26 in NC), saprophages
(14 in C and 13 in NC) and "others" (11 in C and 10 in NC).
Through their activity as microbial grazers and saprophages
, the host of decomposer fauna act as gatekeepers in the cycling of material through the system (Petersen and Luxton 1982, Verhoef and Brussard 1990).
In this study, the CCA analysis indicated that edge-specialist species were predominantly predators, while edge-avoiding species were predominantly fungivores or saprophages
, but the overall trend among just the 32 common species was not significant.
Two way analysis of variance (ANOVA)/ Kruskal-Wallis tests, and associated multiple comparisons tests, Tuckey and Dunn were used for testing: a) possible differences of nesting guild selection (tunnelers, dweller, rollers) and feeding guild selection (coprophagous, necrophagous, saprophages
and generalist) within the different habitats; b) possible differences in richness and abundance of Scarabaeinae by bait, and c) differences in abundance and richness of the Scarabaeinae by baits within the habitats studied.
Our data show two important issues: beetle species in the pasture extended their activity to the beginning of the dry season, while abundances dropped in the other, unirrigated zones; and the possibility that the Scarabaeinae living in neotropical forests are opportunistic saprophages
and have specialized habits for resources other than dung.