The response of invertebrate assemblies to grazing

  • Published source details Gibson C.W.D., Brown V.K., Losito L. & McGavin G.C. (1992) The response of invertebrate assemblies to grazing. Ecography, 15, 166-176.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Reduce grazing intensity on grassland (including seasonal removal of livestock)

Action Link
Farmland Conservation
  1. Reduce grazing intensity on grassland (including seasonal removal of livestock)

    A controlled, replicated trial in 1985-1989 on grassland in Oxfordshire, England (Gibson et al. 1992) found that as sheep grazing intensity increased, the number of species of bugs (Heteroptera), herbivorous beetles (Coleoptera), leafhoppers (Auchenorrhyncha), leaf miners and spiders (Araneae) decreased. In the most intensively grazed treatments, the total number of species of bugs, herbivorous beetles, leafhoppers, leaf miners and spiders was 11, 16, 17, 16 and 17 respectively, compared to 19, 24, 20, 34 and 25 in the least grazed treatment. Grazing treatments began in 1985. Three treatments were replicated six times in 30 x 30 m paddocks (ungrazed control, short-period spring and short-period autumn grazing) and two treatments were applied in larger areas (spring-and-autumn grazing and long-period autumn grazing, not replicated). Plants were surveyed four times a year in 12 quadrats (1 m2) in each replicate.


Output references
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