The effect of fire on epigaeic arthropods in Buttongrass moorland in Tasmania
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Penelope Greenslade, Michael Driessen, 1999. "The effect of fire on epigaeic arthropods in Buttongrass moorland in Tasmania", The Other 99%: The Conservation and Biodiversity of Invertebrates, Winston Ponder, Daniel Lunney
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Epigaeic (active above the ground) arthropods were collected in late summer from 27 Buttongrass moorland sites of different ages. The sites formed a chronosequence ranging from one month to 64 years since the last fire and were located in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Sampling was carried out using standard sweeps and vegetational and abiotic factors were also measured. There was a significant reduction in morphospecies richness and abundance on sites of five years and under since fire compared to sites of 10 to 20 years. Taxa such as Acarina, Collembola, Coleoptera adults and Lepidoptera were affected. Numbers decreased in older vegetation. There were significant differences between localities and between Buttongrass moorland types in abundance and composition of the different taxa. Recommendations for fire management of the area are made.