Effects of Montane Heathland Restoration on Leafhopper Assemblages (Insecta: Auchenorrhyncha)

Autor(en): Borchard, Fabian
Fartmann, Thomas 
Stichwörter: ARTHROPODS; biodiversity; COMMUNITIES; CONSEQUENCES; CONSERVATION; conservation management; Ecology; Environmental Sciences & Ecology; GRASSLANDS; GREAT-BRITAIN; habitat specialist; INDICATORS; MANAGEMENT; microclimate; MOTORWAY SLOPES; PLANT; succession; vegetation structure
Erscheinungsdatum: 2014
Herausgeber: WILEY
Journal: RESTORATION ECOLOGY
Volumen: 22
Ausgabe: 6
Startseite: 749
Seitenende: 757
Zusammenfassung: 
At the beginning of the 20th century, many montane heathlands were abandoned and became subject to natural succession or afforestation by humans. Thus, the formerly large montane heathlands slowly degraded into small and isolated patches. In this study, we evaluate the influence of restoration measures on leafhopper (Auchenorrhyncha) assemblages of montane heathland ecosystems in Central Europe. Our analyses comprised three different site types that were adjacent to each other: (1) montane heathlands, (2) restoration sites, and (3) control sites. Leafhoppers showed a clear response to montane heathland restoration. Thus, after 4-5 years since implementation of restoration measurements restoration sites were characterized by the highest species richness. However, detailed analyses of leafhopper diversity, species composition, and environmental parameters on the three site types revealed that restoration sites were rather similar to control sites and significantly differing from montane heathlands. We conclude that leafhoppers are excellent bioindicators for restoration measurements because they reflected environmental differences between the three site types. Restoration measurements might only be a useful instrument to promote typical montane heathland leafhopper communities in the long run. Colonization by leafhoppers is, however, dependent on many different factors such as leafhopper mobility, vegetation structure, microclimate, and the establishment of ericaceous dwarf shrubs. Practitioners should establish a management regime (grazing and sod-cutting) that creates a mosaic of different habitat structures and increases typical heathland vegetation, thus, favoring the colonization of typical heathland leafhoppers.
ISSN: 10612971
DOI: 10.1111/rec.12135

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