Detecting invertebrate responses to fire depends on sampling method and taxonomic resolution

Teasdale, Luisa C, Smith, Annabel L, Thomas, Mailyn, Whitehead, Catherine A and Driscoll, Don A 2013, Detecting invertebrate responses to fire depends on sampling method and taxonomic resolution, Austral ecology, vol. 38, no. 8, pp. 874-883, doi: 10.1111/aec.12024.

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Title Detecting invertebrate responses to fire depends on sampling method and taxonomic resolution
Author(s) Teasdale, Luisa C
Smith, Annabel L
Thomas, Mailyn
Whitehead, Catherine A
Driscoll, Don AORCID iD for Driscoll, Don A orcid.org/0000-0002-1560-5235
Journal name Austral ecology
Volume number 38
Issue number 8
Start page 874
End page 883
Total pages 10
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication London, Eng
Publication date 2013-12
ISSN 1442-9985
1442-9993
Keyword(s) fire management
morphospecies
succession
time since fire
trapping method
Summary New knowledge about the responses of species to fire is needed to plan for biodiversity conservation in the face of changing fire regimes. However, the knowledge that is acquired may be influenced by the sampling method and the taxonomic resolution of a study. To investigate these potential sampling biases, we examined invertebrate responses to time since fire in mallee woodlands of southern Australia. Using a large-scale replicated study system, we sampled over 60000 invertebrates with large pitfall traps, wet pitfall traps and sweep nets, and undertook analyses at morphospecies and order level. Large pitfalls and sweep nets detected several strong fire effects, whereas wet pitfall traps detected few effects. Invertebrate abundance in sweep nets was highest shortly after fire because of grasshopper outbreaks. Several additional morphospecies showed strong preferences for different stages in the post-fire succession. In contrast with morphospecies effects, analyses at order level either failed to detect fire effects or were driven by the most abundant species. For fire research to produce credible results with the potential to guide management, it must use a range of sampling techniques and undertake analyses at (morpho)species level. Homogeneous fire management, such as fire suppression in fragmented landscapes or widespread frequent burning for asset protection, is likely to cause declines in fire-affected invertebrates.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/aec.12024
Field of Research 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity
050204 Environmental Impact Assessment
Socio Economic Objective 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2013, Wiley
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30078710

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