Arthropod biodiversity monitoring using RBA techniques in viticulture


Abstract: Wine producing areas often contain a rather high percentage of ‘non-productive’interstitial space that could be managed in favour of biodiversity. Wine growers are ofteninterested in biodiversity since they presume that conservation biological control can contribute topest management. When farmscaping measures are taken the expected increase in biodiversityover time should be monitored. There are few clear practical indications available for farmers onhow to manage the landscape of a farm in favour of biodiversity.We tested the Rapid Biodiversity Assessment method (RBA) which consists of trappingarthropods (using a pitfall and an aerial interception trap) followed by the identification up toorder level and then of ‘morphospecies’ (visually different individuals are presumed to bedifferent species). The method is not 100% sound for a taxonomist but it allows quick and easymeasurement of general biodiversity, which can be done by non-experienced volunteers, reducingcosts and increasing efficiency. Morphospecies richness and overall abundance can easily bemeasured and compared among sites, habitats and years.

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