Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Habitat Fragmentation Effects on Community Composition of Carabid in Steppes of Northwest China

Version 1 : Received: 28 November 2019 / Approved: 29 November 2019 / Online: 29 November 2019 (10:40:21 CET)

How to cite: Wei, S.; Huang, W.; Zhu, M.; Gao, L.; Wang, Y.; Zhang, R.; Li, Z.; Zhao, Z. Habitat Fragmentation Effects on Community Composition of Carabid in Steppes of Northwest China. Preprints 2019, 2019110376 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201911.0376.v1). Wei, S.; Huang, W.; Zhu, M.; Gao, L.; Wang, Y.; Zhang, R.; Li, Z.; Zhao, Z. Habitat Fragmentation Effects on Community Composition of Carabid in Steppes of Northwest China. Preprints 2019, 2019110376 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201911.0376.v1).

Abstract

It is well known that human activities and climate change have increased steppe habitat loss and fragmentation in Northwest China. Carabid beetles are often used as bioindicators of environmental change because they are extremely sensitive to disturbance. We chose 42 landscapes (18 fragmented and 24 continuous) in both desert and typical steppes of Northwest China to examine the influence of habitat loss and fragmentation on carabid beetle communities. The results showed the largest correlation coefficient between carabid communities and landscape compositions within a 7-km spatial scale in both desert and typical steppes. Further, the response of carabid communities to habitat fragmentation was species-specific in both desert and typical steppes. Habitat fragmentation in the desert steppe had positive effects on the richness and abundance of carabid communities, while in the typical steppe, the effects were negative. Additionally, habitat fragmentation significantly decreased the abundance of two common carabid species in the desert steppe. Therefore, the effects of habitat fragmentation on carabid biodiversity differ with species characteristics and habitat traits, where plant communities, soil structure, and microclimate vary in the different steppe types. The results of this study provide experimental evidence and technical support for biodiversity conservation management in the steppes of Northwest China.

Subject Areas

steppe; habitat fragmentation; carabid beetles; community; richness; abundance

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