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Bloomington Grove Kickapoo Creek Restoration to Enhance Biodiversity

Does a high quality prairie restoration in an urban/agricultural landscape provide invertebrates necessary for a sustainable ecosystem?

2012 - 2016
Kees Musters

Biodiversity is declining around the globe.  Agricultural intensification is contributing to the decline. Research is necessary to improve biodiversity in agricultural areas.

Prairie restoration (formerly agricultural row crop) within a new housing development 5 years post-construction in the mid-west USA.

While specific invertebrate groups have been studied in prairie restorations in abandoned agricultural areas there are few studies that look at terrestrial invertebrate assemblages. We took the opportunity offered by a large scale housing development in central Illinois to survey invertebrates in three phases of plant restoration that were part of a larger project. Because invertebrates are closely related to plant species, we conducted a study to document the differences between the three phases of prairie restoration.

We sampled invertebrates using sticky boards, pitfall traps and sweepnets to get a wide variety of functional groups.

This cross-sectional study of invertebrate recovery at two, four and five year’s post-restoration showed that there was no significant difference in invertebrate taxa richness and diversity. Continued monitoring of invertebrates is recommended.

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