A Comparative Study on Temperature and Relative Humidity Data of Three Caves in Different Climatic Regions of Turkey, with Notes on the Distribution of Anatolian Cave Crickets (Insecta, Orthoptera, Rhaphidophoridae)
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The diversity of cave crickets (Orthoptera, Rhaphidophoridae) remarkably differs between geographic regions in Anatolia. While only 4 species are distributed in northern Anatolia where Black Sea climate prevails, 14 species are found throughout southern and western Anatolia where the Mediterranean climate is dominant. However, no cave crickets were reported from the middle and eastern Anatolia where the continental climate is present. There is no data-based study on the distribution pattern of cave cricket species in Anatolia. This study aimed to reveal any possible relation between climatic conditions and distribution of cave crickets in three caves selected as representatives for three climate types present in Anatolia. Temperature and relative humidity in the ecological zones of the given caves and the surface were periodically measured by using data loggers. Our data show within cave variations in temperature and relative humidity among all three caves: (i) variations in temperature and relative humidity decreased from the entrance zone to the dark zone, (ii) over the winter period, temperature increased from the entrance zone to the dark zone, (iii) over the summer period, temperature decreased from the entrance zone to the dark zone, (iv) the most distinct temperature variation was measured in continental climate, and (v) the major similarity of climatic conditions between cave and climate type was observed in the Black Sea region which cave crickets species have widened distribution and limited speciation.