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Negative impact of roadside mowing on arthropod fauna and its reduction with arthropod-friendly mowing technique

Citation

Steidle, Johannes; Kimmich, Thomas; Csader, Michael; Betz, Oliver (2022), Negative impact of roadside mowing on arthropod fauna and its reduction with arthropod-friendly mowing technique , Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.rxwdbrv98

Abstract

This dataset contains data from the paper: “Steidle, J. L.M., Kimmich, T., Csader, M. Betz, O. 2021. Negative impact of roadside mowing on arthropod fauna and its reduction with “arthropod-friendly” mowing technique. Journal of Applied Entomology.”

The study investigates the impact of a conventional mowing head ("MK1200") and a supposedly "insects-friendly" mowing head ("Eco 1200") during roadside mowing on the arthropod fauna.

Mowing with a conventional mowing head caused considerable losses in arthropods, ranging from 29% for Heteroptera over around 50% in Araneae, Cicadina, Hymenoptera, and Diptera, up to 73% for holometabolous larvae, and 87% for Lepidoptera. These losses were fully offset for Araneae, Cicadina, Heteroptera, Lepidoptera, and larvae of holometabolous insects when using the mowing head Eco 1200. For Hymenoptera and Diptera, the losses were reduced by 15 and 25%, respectively. For Saltatoria and Coleoptera, we did not find any significant differences between all treatments.

The study shows that mowing of roadsides with conventional mowing technology has a highly detrimental effect on the grassland arthropod fauna. This effect can be offset or at least mitigated by the use of "arthropod-friendly" mowing technique.

Methods

Plots were either not mown, or mown with the a standard mowing head "MK1200", or the mowing head "Eco 1200" (both from the company MULAG, Germany). Arthropods were sampled in the plots using biocoenometers and determinded up to the level of orders or suborders.

Funding

MULAG Fahrzeugwerk / Heinz Wössner GmbH u. Co. KG, Oppenau, Germany