Editor’s Choice 59:5: Rolling composite wildflower blocks as an alternative to wildflower strips to improve farmland biodiversity

Associate Editor, Erik Öckinger, introduces this month’s Editor’s Choice paper by Jana Eccard, which suggests that rotational wildflower blocks, where successional stages exist in parallel, could represent a novel improvement to the commonly used wildflower strips. Strips with sown wildflowers along the margins of crop fields have become a common measure to counteract the ongoing loss of farmland biodiversity in many European countries. These wildflower … Continue reading Editor’s Choice 59:5: Rolling composite wildflower blocks as an alternative to wildflower strips to improve farmland biodiversity

The Disproportionate Value of ‘Weeds’ to Pollinators and Biodiversity

In their latest research, Nicholas Balfour and Francis Ratnieks use multiple datasets to compare the biodiversity value of the plant species classified as ‘injurious weeds’ by the UK’s 1959 Weeds Act, with those species stipulated by DEFRA for pollinator targeted agri-environmental options. In the UK, five species of native wildflowers are classified as “injurious weeds” in the 1959 Weeds Act. Three of them are frequently … Continue reading The Disproportionate Value of ‘Weeds’ to Pollinators and Biodiversity

Beneficial arthropod abundance assessed by sweep-netting is negatively associated with landscape-wide insecticide use

In a new study, Bakker, Bianchi and van der Werf assess how the use of insecticides and semi-natural landscapes impact beneficial arthropods in the Netherlands. Beneficial arthropods, like predators, parasitoids and pollinators, provide important ecosystem services such as biological pest control and pollination, and are therefore vital for ecosystem health and global food production. However, concerns have risen on the widespread decline of arthropods — … Continue reading Beneficial arthropod abundance assessed by sweep-netting is negatively associated with landscape-wide insecticide use

Evaluierung von GAP-Wildpflanzenblühstreifen: Hochwertige Saatgutmischungen erhöhen die Pflanzenvielfalt und die damit verbundenen Pollen- und Nektarressourcen auf Ackerflächen erheblich

Dieser Beitrag ist hier auch auf Englisch verfügbar In ihrer neuen Studie untersuchten Schmidt et al., die Wirksamkeit von Wildblumenstreifen, die im Rahmen der EU Agrarumweltprogramme eingeführt wurden Blühstreifen sind ein wesentlicher Bestandteil der Agrarumwelt- und Klimamaßnahmen (AUKM), die von der Europäischen Union eingeführt wurden, um dem Verlust der biologischen Vielfalt und der damit verbundenen Ökosystemleistungen in der Agrarlandschaft entgegenzuwirken. Mehrjährige Blühstreifen werden einmalig zu Beginn … Continue reading Evaluierung von GAP-Wildpflanzenblühstreifen: Hochwertige Saatgutmischungen erhöhen die Pflanzenvielfalt und die damit verbundenen Pollen- und Nektarressourcen auf Ackerflächen erheblich

Evaluating CAP wildflower strips: high-quality seed mixtures significantly improve plant diversity and related pollen and nectar resources

This post is also available in German here In their new study, Schmidt and colleagues investigate the effectiveness of wildflower strips introduced under the European Union’s Agri-Environment Schemes Flower strips are a fundamental part of agri-environment schemes (AES) introduced by the European Union to counteract the loss of biodiversity and related ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes. At the beginning of every funding period (approx. 5 … Continue reading Evaluating CAP wildflower strips: high-quality seed mixtures significantly improve plant diversity and related pollen and nectar resources

Can forest remnants in oil palm act as microclimate oases for biodiversity?

There is growing interest in the ecological value of set‐aside habitats around rivers in tropical agriculture. In their latest research, Williamson and colleagues investigate the capacity for riparian buffers to act as microclimatic refugia across an oil palm dominated landscape in Borneo. In many ways, oil palm is a miracle crop – it is vastly more productive than its temperate and tropical counterparts and is … Continue reading Can forest remnants in oil palm act as microclimate oases for biodiversity?

Why neonicotinoids? Interview with Southwood Prize winner, Ségolène Humann‐Guilleminot

Senior Editor, Romina Rader, recently spoke to Ségolène Humann‐Guilleminot, winner of our Southwood Prize early career researcher award, to find out more about her work on neonicotinoid insecticides in agricultural land.

Ségolène’s research has also been beautifully illustrated (above) by Rob Lang at Underdone Comics. Continue reading Why neonicotinoids? Interview with Southwood Prize winner, Ségolène Humann‐Guilleminot

Bee pollen reveals how multiple threats could contribute to bee decline

Recent research from Centrella et al. shows the effects agriculture and associated pesticides are having on bees in terms of both their diets and the offspring they produce. Here they discuss their findings. Threats to bee pollinators such as land use change, high pesticide use, and reduced floral diet diversity are usually assessed independently, even though we know that bees face these threats simultaneously in … Continue reading Bee pollen reveals how multiple threats could contribute to bee decline

Editor’s Choice 57:04 – Enhancing biodiversity through more heterogeneous field designs

In Journal of Applied Ecology’s April Editor’s Choice, Alignier et al. present a way of promoting farmland biodiversity without sacrificing land needed for agricultural production. Associate Editor, Pieter De Frenne (Forest & Nature Lab, Ghent University, Belgium), introduces their exciting research. Researchers and policymakers are constantly testing, assessing and implementing different techniques to reduce the negative impacts of current agricultural practices on biodiversity. This is … Continue reading Editor’s Choice 57:04 – Enhancing biodiversity through more heterogeneous field designs

Spotlight: new insights into forest management

What are some surprising new approaches to restoration in forest landscapes? What are the ecosystem services provided by deer? Can we use salvage logging to prevent future bark beetle outbreaks? These questions and more are answered in our new Spotlight collection, sharing new insights and innovations in forest management. Associate Editor, Julio Louzada brings together the featured articles. The modern tradeoff between the maintenance of … Continue reading Spotlight: new insights into forest management