Biodiversity of spiders (Araneae) and carabid beetles (Carabidae) on fields in Saxony

  • Published source details Volkmar C. & Kreuter T. (2006) Biodiversity of spiders (Araneae) and carabid beetles (Carabidae) on fields in Saxony. Mitteilungen der Deutschen Gesellschaft für allgemeine und angewandte Entomologie, 15, 97-102.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Reduce tillage

Action Link
Farmland Conservation
  1. Reduce tillage

    A replicated, controlled study in May to July 2003-2004 in two arable regions in central Germany (Volkmar & Kreuter 2006) found that the abundance/activity density of both spiders (Araneae) and ground beetles (Carabidae) was higher on fields with reduced tillage (ground beetles: 1,446 individuals (mulched fields), 1,634 (directly sown fields); spiders: 4.75 individuals/day and trap (mulching), 2.9 (direct sown)) than on conventional ploughed fields (ground beetles: 1,241 individuals; spiders: 2.85 individuals/day and trap), but lower than on organic ploughed fields (ground beetles: 2,725 individuals; spiders: 6.05 individuals/day and trap). Species richness of spiders was higher on reduced tillage fields (direct sown: 40 species, mulched: 35 spp.) than on the other field types (organic: 37.5 spp., conventional ploughed: 35 spp.), but the number of ground beetle species was lower on reduced tillage fields (mulched: 35.5 spp., direct sown: 34 spp.) than on the other field types (39 spp. conventional ploughed, 50 spp. organic ploughed). However, the effect of reduced tillage was species dependent for both spiders and ground beetles, i.e. some species clearly benefited from reduced tillage, whereas others preferred ploughed fields. Four field types were investigated: organic ploughed fields, conventional ploughed fields, conventional mulched fields (no plough), and conventional directly sown fields (no plough). Cereals were grown on all fields during the study years. Spiders and ground beetles were caught using pitfall traps (six replications/field type). Note that no statistical analyses were performed on the data presented in this study.


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