Ground beetles (Carabidae) and edge effect in oak-hornbeam forest and grassland transects

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Citations (Scopus)


We evaluated ground beetle diversity in relation to forest edge between an oak-hornbeam forest and adjacent herbaceous grassland. To test our hypothesis that the diversity of ground beetles was higher in the forest edge than the interior, pitfall trap samples were taken along two forest-grassland transects in northern Hungary. The diversity of ground beetles was significantly higher at the forest edge and in the grassland than in the forest interior. Ground beetle assemblages in the forest interior, forest edge and grassland could be separated from each other by ordination. Indicator species analysis detected five groups of species: habitat generalists, grassland-associated species, forest generalists, forest specialists, and edge-associated species. Rank correlation indicated leaf litter, herb, canopy cover, and prey abundance as the most important factors influencing carabid diversity. The high diversity of the forest edge resulted from the presence of edge-associated species and of species characteristic of adjacent habitats. Forest edges seem to play an important role in maintaining diversity. Serving as source habitats, edges also contribute to the recolonisation by ground beetles after habitat destruction or other disturbance in the adjacent habitats.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-300
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Soil Biology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2001


  • Diversity
  • Forest edge
  • Ground beetles
  • Indicator species
  • Nature conservation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Soil Science
  • Insect Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Ground beetles (Carabidae) and edge effect in oak-hornbeam forest and grassland transects'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this