Journal of Resources and Ecology ›› 2012, Vol. 3 ›› Issue (2): 174-182.DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2012.02.010

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A Comparison of Terrestrial Arthropod Sampling Methods

ZOU Yi1, FENG Jinchao2, XUE Dayuan2, SANG Weiguo3, Jan C. AXMACHER1   

  1. 1 Department of Geography, University College London, London WC1E 6BT, UK;
    2 College of Life and Environmental Science, Minzu University of China, Beijing 100082, China;
    3 The State Key Laboratory of Vegetation and Environmental Change, Institute of Botany, CAS, Beijing 100093, China
  • Received:2012-02-24 Revised:2012-04-20 Online:2012-06-30 Published:2012-06-30
  • Supported by:

    the the China Bureau of Foreign Experts, the Ministry of Education of China (111 Program, Grant 2008-B08044), the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Fellowship for Young International Scientists (Fellowship Number 2010Y1SA16) and the Key Basic Research Project “973” (2010CB951301-5).

Abstract: Terrestrial arthropods are extremely important ecosystem components. The choice of best approaches to collect the wide range of terrestrial arthropods has been a topic of long-lasting debates. This article provides a brief overview of common sampling methods for terrestrial arthropod assemblages. We divide sampling methods into three main categories: passive sampling methods without any “activity density” bias, passive sampling methods with an “activity density” bias, and active sampling methods with inherent “activity density” and often further species-dependent biases, discussing their individual advantages and shortcomings as basis for biodiversity studies and pest control management. The selection of the optimal sampling methods depends strongly on the purpose of individual studies and the ecology and behavior of the arthropod groups targeted. A combination of different suitable methods is highly recommended in many cases.

Key words: terrestrial arthropods, sampling methods, comparison, activity density