Study

Conserving threatened Lepidoptera: Towards an effective woodland management policy in landscapes under intense human land-use

  • Published source details Merckx T., Feber R.E., Hoare D.J., Parsons M.S., Kelly C.J., Bourn N.A.D. & Macdonald D.W. (2012) Conserving threatened Lepidoptera: Towards an effective woodland management policy in landscapes under intense human land-use. Biological Conservation, 149, 32-39.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Clear or open patches in forests

Action Link
Butterfly and Moth Conservation

Coppice woodland

Action Link
Butterfly and Moth Conservation
  1. Clear or open patches in forests

    A replicated, site comparison study in 2010 in six deciduous woodlands in Hampshire and Wiltshire, UK (Merckx et al. 2012) found that wide woodland rides had a lower abundance, but similar species richness, of macro-moths than standard rides and mature forest. In wide woodland rides, the abundance of macro-moths (1,926 individuals) was lower than in standard rides (2,513 individuals) and mature forest (2,479 individuals). Species richness was similar between wide (175 species) and standard (176 species) rides and mature forest (180 species). However, wide rides and coppiced woodland supported 49 species not found in standard rides or mature forest, and 124 species were more abundant in wide rides and coppiced woodland than in standard rides and mature forest, especially ‘common but severely declining’ species (see paper for details). Only 22 species were found in standard rides or mature forest but not wide rides or coppiced woodland. Within six woodlands (8–711 ha), six areas under each of six management types were studied: young (1–2 years), medium (3–6 years) and old (7–9 years) coppice, wide (>20 m) and standard (<10 m) rides, and non-coppiced mature forest. From July–October 2010, macro-moths were sampled nine times/site using a 6 W Heath actinic light trap, over 27 nights (two sites/management type sampled/night).

    (Summarised by: Andrew Bladon)

  2. Coppice woodland

    A replicated, site comparison study in 2010 in six deciduous woodlands in Hampshire and Wiltshire, UK (Merckx et al. 2012) found that coppiced woodland had a lower abundance and species richness of macro-moths than non-coppiced mature forest, but more unique species. Both the abundance and species richness of macro-moths were similar in young (1,248 individuals; 160 species), mid-age (1,433 individuals; 167 species) and old coppice (2,071 individuals; 162 species) and wide rides (1,926 individuals; 175 species), but were lower than in non-coppiced mature forest (2,479 individuals; 180 species) and standard rides (2,513 individuals; 176 species). However, coppiced woodland and wide rides supported 49 species not found in mature forest or standard rides, and 124 species were more abundant in coppiced woodland and wide rides than in mature forest and standard rides, especially ‘common but severely declining’ species (see paper for details). Only 22 species were found in mature forest or standard rides but not coppiced woodland or wide rides. Within six woodlands (8–711 ha), six areas under each of six management types were studied: young (1–2 years), medium (3–6 years) and old (7–9 years) coppice, wide (>20 m) and standard (<10 m) rides, and non-coppiced mature forest. All coppiced sites had been actively managed for at least 20 years. From July–October 2010, macro-moths were sampled nine times/site using a 6 W Heath actinic light trap, over 27 nights (two sites/management type sampled/night).

    (Summarised by: Andrew Bladon)

Output references
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 19

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.


Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust