Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Flynn C, Griffin C, Coll J, Williams C
Insect Conservation and Diversity
The diversity and composition of moth assemblages of protected and degraded raised bogs in Ireland
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Optional Fields
biodiversity biodiversity indicators degraded sites Habitats Directive invertebrate conservation lepidoteran communities moths Natura 2000 protected sites raised bogs
© 2016 The Royal Entomological Society.Peatlands are globally important habitats, which act as net carbon stores. As a result of drainage, peat extraction and agricultural intensification, raised bogs in the midlands of Ireland are a diminishing and increasingly fragmented peatland habitat. A network of protected sites has been established, which is intended to represent the best abiotic and plant community systems. Lepidoteran communities are an important component of raised bog biodiversity and may be useful as biodiversity indicators, yet they are a neglected area of research. We address this by surveying night-flying macro-moths on six protected and six degraded raised bogs to establish whether there is a distinct moth fauna associated with the wettest areas of protected sites by comparing them to assemblages found on degraded sites where this wet habitat has been lost. In general, differences between moth assemblages on protected and degraded raised bogs are rather subtle, with assemblages on both site types generally similar. But, a number of species were found to be associated with protected sites, three of which are bog-associated species of conservation concern and may be particularly vulnerable due to the continuing loss of the wettest areas of raised bogs. Degraded sites were found to harbour a significant number of bog-associated species of conservation concern and may have a role to play in peatland invertebrate conservation, hitherto undervalued. To determine this, further research is required to describe the invertebrate fauna of these sites and of marginal areas of protected sites.
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