Article 2215

Title of the article



Dobrolyubova Tat'yana Vasil'evna, Candidate of biological sciences, leading researcher, State nature reserve “Privolzhskaya lesostep” (12A Okruzhnaya street, Penza, Russia),

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595.72: 574.47


Background. The orthopterous are one of the major links in trophic chains of steppe and meadow biocoenoses. In Penza region the fauna of the orthopterous communities has not been sufficiently studied and the ecology thereof has not been examined virtually at all. The aim of the work is to study the fauna and structure of populations of orthopteroid insects (mantes and the orthopterous) in main types of meadow-steppe vegetation in Penza region.
Materials and methods. In the state nature reserve “Povolzhskaya lesostep” and in the outskirts of Volokhonshchino village (Penza district) in 2012–2014 there were studied the population structure of orthopterous communities (species composition, chorologic characteristics, biological spectrum, relative domination size and structure) in 5 main types of meadow-steppe vegetation: true (TS) and meadow steppes (MS), steppe meadows on the open territory (SM) and on forest glades (GSM), true meadows (TM). The researcher used the generally applied methods of quantitative recording of the orthopterous by cutting on specifically allocaed areas of 10 × 10 square meters in size with combined recording of insects by a number of sweeps and time of cutting.
Results. The author revealed a single species of mantid and 46 species of the orthopterous. One species – Montana stricta – was recorder for the first time in Penza region. The researcher discovered 11 life froms, the percentage of all chortobionts was 76 %. The author marked that the fauna is significantly more “steppe-like” (72 % of north steppe, steppe and south steppe species) than in Kursk region (56 % respectively). In the range from MS to TM the percentage of south steppe species decreases with a simultaneous increase of north steppe and steppe ones. By the longitudinal characteristics the fauna is close to the one in meadow steppes of Saratov region. The orthopterous communities of various types of vegetation are quite different between each other. Relatively similar in pairs are the communities of MS – SM and the communities of TM – GSM. The amount of mass species from MS to TM increases from 3 to 6. The main dominant of TS and MS is E. pulvinatus, in more mesophytic association in MS and MS the dominant is Ch. gr. biguttulus, in GSM and TM the spectrum of dominants is prevailed by several species including Eu. brachyptera and B. bicolor. General abundance of the orthopterous in various types of vegetation varies from 22 to 36 specimen/record, but these differences are statistically unreliable.
Conclusions. 1. One may observe significant differences in abundance of certain species and dominant composition of the orthopterous communities due to high diversity of ecological conditions inside one type of vegetation not only in different locations of the research, but in different plant associations in one and the same area. At the same time between various types of vegetation, reargless of their geographical position in the region, there are common regularities of specific and chorologic population structures and of biological spectra. 2. The orthopterous population of meadow-steppe vegetation in Penza region is an intermediate one between the orthopterous populations of meadow steppes in Kursk and Saratov regions.

Key words

orthopterous, meadow-steppe vegetation, population structure.

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