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Grassland restorations and predatory invertebrates

Research Achievements

Grassland restorations and predatory invertebrates

Agricultural producers and NGO's have restored thousands of ha's of former cropland in the U.S. with native grasses and forbs. However, the ability of these grassland restorations to attract predatory invertebrates has not been well documented, even though predators provide an important service by regulating herbivores. K. Nemec assessed the effects of plant richness and seeding density on the richness and abundance of surface-dwelling and aboveground predatory invertebrates. There was a positive effect of richness on ladybird beetle abundance. Seeding density had a positive effect on ground beetle and spider species richness and diversity. Prior to receiving an IGERT traineeship, Kristine Nemec spent several years as a full-time federal employee and part-time graduate student. Receiving the traineeship enabled her to resign from her full-time position and focus completely on her Ph.D. research, allowing her to complete her research in 2.5 years, and to expand her research network.