Biodiv Sci ›› 2014, Vol. 22 ›› Issue (4): 516-524.DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1003.2014.13212

• Orginal Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Diversity of ground-dwelling beetles (Coleoptera) in restored habitats in the hill and gully area of Loess Plateau, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region

Jia Hang1, Yun Shi1,2, Wenhui Liu1, Dahan He1,3,*()   

  1. 1. Agricultural College, Ningxia University, Yinchuan 750021
    2 .College of Resources and Environment, Ningxia University, Yinchuan 750021
    3 .State Key Laboratory for Restoration and Reconstruction of Degraded Ecosystem in North-western China, Ningxia University, Yinchuan 750021
  • Received:2013-09-30 Accepted:2014-01-14 Online:2014-07-20 Published:2014-07-24
  • Contact: He Dahan

Abstract:

The aim of this study was to probe into changes in diversity of ground-dwelling beetles (Coleoptera) and their relation to environmental variables within restored habitats in the hill and gully area of Loess Plateau, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, China. An investigation of ground-dwelling beetle communities was carried out using pitfall traps in six habitats including shrub/grassland, tree/shrub mix, fuel-wood forest, naturally restored grassland, plantation forest, and level terraced field in July and August, 2013. We found that species richness and abundance of individual ground-dwelling beetles was higher (P<0.05) in the shrub/grassland, tree/shrub mix, and fuel-wood forest compared to the other three stands. Species richness of ground-dwelling beetles was markedly lower (P<0.05) in naturally restored grassland, plantation forest and level terraced field, whereas the abundance of individual ground-dwelling beetles were higher in plantation forest and level terraced field than in naturally restored grassland. Jaccard indices revealed a high level of similarity amongst shrub/grassland, tree/shrub mix, and fuel-wood forest stands, and then between plantation forest stands and level terraced fields. Multiple linear regression analyses showed that herbaceous biomass, cover of shrub species and soil water content were the key factors affecting species richness of ground-dwelling beetles, while it was canopy cover and leaf litter depth that most affected total abundance. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) showed that the cover and depth of leaf litter, cover of canopy and herbaceous layers were important determinants of species abundance and composition of beetle communities. In conclusion, conversion to shrub/grasslands may be one option for raising ground-dwelling beetle diversity in the hill and gully area of Loess Plateau, Ningxia.

Key words: shrub/grassland, ground-dwelling beetles, ecological restoration, species diversity, canonical correspondence analysis (CCA)