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Occurrence of insects in relation to short term forest fire history
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Biology. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology. (Ekologi)
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 40 credits / 60 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Several boreal insect species are pyrophilic and are more or less dependent on recently burned forest. Many pyrophilic species are attracted to potential substratum-rich recently burned forest by smoke and heat. Modern forestry has dramatically reduced the amount and size of forest fires in northern Europe during the last century and as a result several of the pyrophilic species are now threatened. The aim of this study was to analyse how the occurrence of insects such as Diptera of the pyrophilic genus Microsania, pyrophilic Coleoptera, obligate saproxylic Coleoptera and Coleoptera with unknown fire-dependency were affected by the forest fire history during the last 14 years. The aim was also to analyse what effect the spatial and temporal scales of the forest fire history has on the occurrence of these insects. This was done using smoke attraction traps, a unique method for catching pyrophilic insects without an actual forest fire, and analysing the results with a unique regional short term forest fire history dataset, containing all fires between the years of 1998-2011 in Östergötland county in Sweden. The forest fires were clustered and more abundant in the eastern parts of the county. Seven out of eleven pyrophilic beetles were positively correlated with recent forest fires, mostly for the smaller spatial scales, 100 m – 5000 m. The abundance of many beetles with unknown fire-dependency were associated with recent forest fires. The general ecology for many of these species is not well known but some of these beetles might be favoured by different substrates that are created by fires. Strategically placed conservation burns can help to increase the spatial and temporal connectivity of forest fires to conserve both fire dependent and generally associated insects in the future.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 34 p.
Keyword [en]
Coleoptera, Forest fire history, Microsania, Pyrophilic, Smoke attraction traps, Southern Sweden
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-111824ISRN: LiTH-IFM- Ex--14/2903--SEOAI: diva2:760825
Subject / course
2014-05-23, Schrödinger, Linköpings Universitet, Linköping, 17:22 (English)
Available from: 2014-11-05 Created: 2014-11-04 Last updated: 2014-11-05Bibliographically approved

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