Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 449–466 | Cite as

Importance of high quality early-successional habitats in managed forest landscapes to rare beetle species

  • Diana Rubene
  • Lars-Ove Wikars
  • Thomas Ranius
Original Paper


Species adapted to early-successional forest habitats are in managed landscapes largely confined to clearcuts. To improve habitat quality on clearcuts, green tree and dead wood retention is widely applied in forestry; however, its effects on rare early-successional species have rarely been shown. We repeatedly surveyed two red-listed beetle species (Upis ceramboides and Platysoma minus) on clearcuts in a managed boreal forest landscape. We found that U. ceramboides decreased its occupancy over time while P. minus increased, indicating that red-listed species vary in their ability to successfully utilise managed habitats. We found no effect of connectivity on probability of occurrence, colonisation or extinction per clearcut. Trees retained alive improved habitat quality of clearcuts, since both species were more frequent in dead wood of such trees, in comparison to logging residues. We suggest that retention can be improved by protecting and creating dead wood as intact trees during harvesting. Rare specialist species require habitat of high quality, and consequently it is impossible to meet the requirements of these species on every clearcut. To preserve all early-successional species at a regional scale, we recommend focusing retention of green trees and dead wood to one or a few trees species on each clearcut and in each landscape.


Boreal forest Connectivity Colonisation Dead wood Retention forestry Saproxylic insects 



We thank Martin Schroeder for advice during project planning and together with the Smart Tree Retention research group for useful discussion and comments on the manuscript, and Mikael Andersson for statistical support. Also, thanks to Carola Orrmalm for sharing data from her project and Lisa Karlsson for assistance with field work. This research was funded by the Swedish Research Council Program FORMAS (grant no. 215-2009-569 and 215-2008-539).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EcologySwedish University of Agricultural SciencesUppsalaSweden

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