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Intense grazing of calcareous grasslands has negative consequences for the threatened marsh fritillary butterfly
Calluna AB, Sweden.
Calluna AB, Sweden.
Calluna AB, Sweden.
Linnéuniversitetet, Fakulteten för Hälso- och livsvetenskap (FHL), Institutionen för biologi och miljö (BOM).ORCID-id: 0000-0001-8022-5004
2019 (Engelska)Ingår i: Biological Conservation, ISSN 0006-3207, E-ISSN 1873-2917, Vol. 239, s. 1-9, artikel-id 108280Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat) Published
Abstract [en]

Grazing generally benefits grassland biodiversity as it prevents shrub and tree succession. However, too intense grazing may have negative effects for example many grassland insects. EU-subsidies for grazing of some habitats, aimed at promoting biodiversity, still require a relatively intense grazing, and could therefore have negative consequences for some species. We quantified how such grazing affects habitat quality for the marsh fritillary butterfly, and how this influence its colonization-extinction dynamics and persistence. Specifically, we studied a metapopulation on Gotland (Sweden), where the marsh fritillary occupies unfertilized calcareous grassland with a naturally slow succession. We quantified the difference in larvae autumn nests between grazed and ungrazed habitat, and used this difference to adjust the 'effective area' of 256 habitat patches in a 50 km(2) landscape. We then parameterized a metapopulation model based on the occurrence pattern of the adult butterfly, and simulated future population development under different grazing regimes. The results showed that ungrazed habitat harbored 4.8 times more nests than grazed habitat. Reducing the 'effective area' of grazed patches accordingly increased the local extinction probability and decreased colonization. Grazing all suitable habitat reduced the occupancy by over 80%, while no grazing increased the occupancy by up to 40%, based on projections of future dynamics. Current grazing is clearly too intense, and EU-subsidies are here, thus, a conservation measure with negative consequences for a threatened butterfly. To prevent this, subsidies for grazing need to be more flexible and better adapted to the prevailing soil conditions and requirements of the target species.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Elsevier, 2019. Vol. 239, s. 1-9, artikel-id 108280
Nyckelord [en]
Euphydryas aurinia, Incidence function model, Larvae autumn nests, Management, Metapopulation, Population persistence
Nationell ämneskategori
Ekologi
Forskningsämne
Naturvetenskap, Ekologi
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-90547DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2019.108280ISI: 000498750700001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-90547DiVA, id: diva2:1378633
Tillgänglig från: 2019-12-13 Skapad: 2019-12-13 Senast uppdaterad: 2020-03-11Bibliografiskt granskad

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Totalt: 21 träffar
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