Biodiversity profiles for ten bioenergy cropping systems

Nathan Haan, Doug Landis

Presented at the All Scientist Meeting and Investigators Field Tour (2021-09-23 to 2021-09-23 )

Widespread adoption of bioenergy crops could transform North American agricultural landscapes. This would have strong effects on biodiversity, with outcomes depending on which cropping systems are used and which current land uses they replace. To learn about biotic communities associated with several bioenergy cropping systems, we censused a wide array of taxonomic groups in the Bioenergy Cropping Systems Experiment (BCSE) at KBS. This long-term experiment contains five replicates each of ten treatments including bioenergy cropping systems and reference grasslands. We censused plants, bees, butterflies, small mammals, ants, carabid beetles, ground-dwelling spiders, birds, soil microinvertebrates, and microbial communities. We are still processing samples, but results so far indicate that richness of most groups is low in annual cropping systems, somewhat higher in simple perennial systems, and much higher in the three diverse perennial systems. However, not all taxonomic groups conform to this trend and patterns change temporally. This dataset will be used to address several questions about how bioenergy cropping systems could impact biodiversity and more generally about the spatial and temporal distribution of biodiversity in agricultural landscapes.

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