Potential effects of climate change on the distribution of Scarabaeidae dung beetles in Western Europe

Année de publication



Journal of Insect Conservation 2013 17 1059 1070 5


Abstract: Dung beetles are indispensable in pasturelands, especially when poor efficiency of earthworms and irregular rainfall (e.g. under a Mediterranean climate) limit pad decomposition. Although observed and projected species range shifts and extinctions due to climate change have been documented for plants and animals, little effort has focused on the response of keystone species such as the scarab beetles of dung beetle decomposers. Our study aims to forecast the distribution of 37 common Scarabaeidae dung beetle species in France, Portugal and Spain (i.e. more than half of the western European Scarabaeidae fauna) in relation to two climate change scenarios (A2 and B1) for the period leading to 2080. On average, 21 % of the species should change in each 50-km UTM grid cell. The highest faunistic turnover rate and a significant increase in species richness are expected in the north of the study area while a marked impoverishment is expected in the south, with little difference between scenarios. The potential enrichment of northern regions depends on the achievement of the northward shift of thermophilous species, and climate change is generally likely to reduce the current distribution of the majority of species. Under these conditions, the distribution of resource—i.e. the extent and distribution of pastures—will be a key factor limiting species’ responses to climate change. The dramatic abandonment of extensive grazing across many low mountains of southern Europe may thus represent a serious threat to dung beetle distribution changes.

Type de publication
  • journal
Type de document
  • research-article
Classification - Inist-CNRS
    Classification - Scopus
      Classification - Science Metrix
        Classification - Clarivate Analytics (Subject Category)
          Entité nommée
          Entité nommée - Emplacement géographique
            Entité nommée - Organisme
              Entité nommée - Personne
              Powered by Lodex 8.19.1