Carabid (Coleoptera) assemblages in the Scottish uplands: the influence of sheep grazing on ecological structure

  • Published source details Cole L.J., Pollock M.L., Robertson D., Holland J.P. & McCracken D.I. (2006) Carabid (Coleoptera) assemblages in the Scottish uplands: the influence of sheep grazing on ecological structure. Entomologica Fennica, 17, 229-240.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Maintain upland heath/moorland

Action Link
Farmland Conservation
  1. Maintain upland heath/moorland

    A replicated trial from 2001 to 2004 at two upland grassland sites in Perthshire and Scottish Borders, Scotland, UK (Cole et al. 2006) (partly the same study as (Cole et al. 2010)) found that sheep grazing intensity influenced the structure of ground beetle (Carabidae) assemblages. There were 2-5 times as many large beetles of the genus Carabus on extensive summer-only grazed plots (1-3 sheep/ha, June-September/October) than on intensive year-round grazed plots (1-4 sheep/ha). At one of the two sites, the intensively grazed plot had four times as many springtail-specialist beetles. Grazing intensity did not influence the number of ground beetle species at either site, with 23-33 species/plot. One intensive and one extensive plot (each >40 ha) was established at each study site (two replicates). Grazing treatments began in 2001-2002. In each plot, ten locations were sampled in 2003, and five in 2004. Beetles were sampled using pitfall traps in May-June and plants were surveyed in June-August.

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