Conservation Evidence strives to be as useful to conservationists as possible. Please take our survey to help the team improve our resource.

Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Effects of headland management on Carabid beetle communities in Breckland cereal fields

Published source details

Cardwell C., Hassall M. & White P. (1994) Effects of headland management on Carabid beetle communities in Breckland cereal fields. Pedobiologia, 38, 50-62


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Create uncultivated margins around intensive arable or pasture fields Farmland Conservation

Further results for ground beetles (Carabidae) from the same study (Hassall et al. 1992) are presented in a second paper (Cardwell et al. 1994) which found that ground beetles were more abundant in uncropped headlands than conservation headlands (restricted pesticides), fully sprayed headlands and crops. There were significantly more ground beetles on uncropped headlands (3-21/trap) than fully sprayed headlands (3-6/trap) or the main crop (3-9/trap). Conservation headlands tended to have lower numbers than uncropped headlands (3-14/trap). There also tended to be more ground beetles in the crop adjacent to uncropped headlands than conservation or fully sprayed headlands, but the difference was not significant. There were significantly more ground beetle species (total number of species across all sites) on uncropped headlands (36 species across three sites) compared to sprayed headlands (conservation: 32 across four sites; fully sprayed: 24 across two sites) or the crop (31 in eight sites). There was no significant difference between the vegetation cover under different treatments. Plant cover was also measured in five 25 x 25 cm quadrats in each grid.

Leave headlands in fields unsprayed (conservation headlands) Farmland Conservation

Further results for ground beetles (Carabidae) from a replicated, controlled study of headlands of eight barley fields in 1988 in East Anglia, UK (Hassall et al. 1992) are presented in a second paper (Cardwell et al. 1994). As shown by (Hassall et al. 1992), ground beetles tended to be more abundant in conservation headlands (3-14/trap) than sprayed headlands (3-6/trap) and the main crop (3-9/trap). Species richness was greater on conservation headlands (32 species) than fully sprayed headlands (24), but similar to the main crop (31). Significantly higher numbers of ground beetles were found in headlands than field verges (0-4/trap). There was no significant difference between numbers in verges adjacent to different treatments. There was no significant difference between the vegetation cover under different treatments or in the crop. Plant cover was measured in five 25 x 25 cm quadrats in each grid.