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Habitat diversity in the conservation of the grassland Auchenorrhyncha (Homoptera: Cercopidae, Cicadellidae, Cixidae, Delphacidae) of Northern Britain

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Michael Eyre


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Definition of northern British grassland Auchenorrhyncha habitats was carried out using a classification based on analysis of data from 351 sites, involving 121 species, located between Greater Manchester and northern Scotland. Ten habitats were identified showing little influence of geographical position and exhibiting a basic upland-lowland trend. Other factors influencing habitat and species assemblage distribution were soil water, vegetation structure and land cover. An analysis of the species data with satellite-derived land cover data indicated that the lowland covers of tilled land, coast and urban and the upland covers of heath grassland and shrub heath were most important in affecting both species and assemblage distribution. The large-scale survey of grassland sites provided new information on both the ecology and distribution of individual Auchenorrhyncha species. Some were limited to specific habitat types but a considerable number were generalist species found in most or all of the 10 habitat types but showing preferences within upland to lowland or wet to dry site gradients. The ability to generate a subtle grassland Auchenorrhyncha habitat classification with large-scale survey results from standardised and reproducible sampling increases the potential for using habitat diversity for the conservation of grassland Auchenorrhyncha. Habitat preservation would also ensure that species richness (biodiversity) is maintained and that the habitats of rare species are conserved. © Springer 2005.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Eyre MD

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Insect Conservation

Year: 2005

Volume: 9

Issue: 4

Pages: 309-317

ISSN (print): 1366-638X

ISSN (electronic): 1572-9753

Publisher: Springer Netherlands


DOI: 10.1007/s10841-005-8823-x


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