Ground beetle (Coleoptera: Carabidae) communities of an Illinois sand savanna and sand prairie mosaic

Alan David Yanahan, Steven J. Taylor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) are an incredibly diverse group with many species displaying a high degree of habitat specificity. However, little is known regarding the species associated with sand prairie and sand savanna. In this study, we were interested in assessing the carabid species diversity within these habitat types. Specifically, that (1) each habitat harbored a distinct assemblage of beetles and that (2) differences in species distributions were due to variation in habitat characteristics, including canopy and ground cover, vegetation structure, tree density, leaf litter depth, and soil moisture. Our site, the Braidwood Dunes and Savanna Nature Preserve in Will County, Illinois, is a mosaic of sand prairie and sand savanna, as well as marshland. Beetles were sampled continuously from mid-March to mid-November via pitfall trapping; this encompassed the carabids’ entire active season. Diversity analyses were conducted to evaluate the variation in species composition between habitats and within habitats over time. The habitat characteristics were measured in mid-July, and analyses were undertaken to determine the correlations of individual species distributions with specific habitat parameters.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEntomology 2012
StatePublished - 2012


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