Structure of Harvestmen (Arachnida, Opiliones) Communities in Different, Anthropically Disturbed Beech Ecosystems (Western Carpathians, Slovakia)

I. Mihál 1  and Ľ. Černecká 1
  • 1 Institute of Forest Ecology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Šturova 2, 960 53 , Zvolen, Slovakia


The authors evaluate the impact of different types of forestry management, and other anthropic disturbances, on harvestmen (Opiliones) communities in sub-mountain beech stands in the Western Carpathians. Harvestmen were studied in three main localities, consisting of nine partial plots (Žiar nad Hronom - (1) control closed canopy stand; Jalná - (2) control stand, (3) thinning stand, (4) 11-year old forest clearing, and (5) 2-year old forest clearing; Kováčová - (6) control stand, (7) coppice, (8) 10-year old forest clearing, and (9) 3-year old forest clearing). In total, 16 harvestmen species were found, representing 45.7 % of the 35 harvestmen species range known in Slovakia to date. Th e most abundant species, i. e., those with the highest dominance values (D), were Lophopilio palpinalis (D = 22.8%), Trogulus nepaeformis (D = 17.9%), Lacinius ephippiatus (D = 12.2%), Trogulus tricarinatus (D = 11.3%), Oligolophus tridens (D = 10.5%), and Nemastoma lugubre (D = 6.7%). At the partial plot of the 3-year old forest clearing, we found eight harvestmen species and noticed a high number of specimens (5.49) caught in one individual trap, and this was also the highest number among all the nine sites.

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