Study

Arthropod abundance was higher on remnant hedges compared to uncut or cut hedges, but diversity higher on cut hedges in Hampshire and Northumberland, UK.

  • Published source details Sotherton N.W. (1981) Aspects of hedge management and their effects on hedgerow fauna. Zeitschrift Angewandte Entomologie, 92, 425-432

Summary

There are limited studies on the effect of hedgerow management on invertebrates. Therefore, this study investigates arthropod fauna of nine hedgerows under three management regimes in Northumberland and Hampshire, UK.

On a farm in Damerham, Hampshire, in 1979, nine hedgerows were sampled under three management regimes: uncut (for > 5 years), cut (eight months previously)and remnant (individual trees and bushes along field edge). An additional one cut (six months previously) and one remnant hedge at Northumberland College of Agriculture, Ponteland were sampled in 1975.

Arthropods were sampled during July (and September in Northumberland) using a beating tray and pooter. Three samples were taken on each side of each hedge. Arthropods were classified into taxa and the 12 most abundant of those were further categorised as herbivores (6), carnivores (4) or scavengers (2).

Abundance was significantly higher on remnant hedges (1565-2896) than uncut (836) or cut (705-809) hedges. In comparison, the number of taxa was greater on cut hedges (45-50) compared to uncut (31) and remnant hedges (35-46).

There were significantly more herbivores on remnant hedges (mean: 2.54) than cut (1.8) or uncut hedges (1.6), largely due to the high numbers of Psyllidae on remnant hedges (56% vs 16-24% of insects on cut and uncut). There were also significantly more Lepidoptera larvae, Pentatomidae and Chrysomelidae on remnant hedges; numbers of isopods were low. Numbers of carnivores were similar on remnant (1.9), uncut (2.0) and cut hedgerows (1.8). The same was true for scavengers: remnant (1.6), uncut (1.8) and cut (1.7).

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