Data files for manuscript titled "Effects of solar energy development on ants in the Mojave Desert".
Excel file with 4 tabs: Metadata; Abundance, Richness, Shannon; Community Composition; and Functional Traits. Metadata is contained within Excel file that describes all variables for each tab.
Abstract from paper:
Land-use change from solar energy development may affect desert ecosystems and the soils, plants, and animals therein, yet our understanding of these interactions is nascent. With their ubiquity, criticality as ecosystem constituents, and sensitivity to environmental variation, ants may be useful study organisms for elucidating ecological effects of solar energy development in deserts. Our objectives were to disentangle the response of a desert ant community to solar energy development decisions and test the efficacy of ants as bioindicators at Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System (ISEGS, 392 MW) in the Mojave Desert, USA. We used pitfall traps to collect ants in treatments representing different solar energy development decisions, including variably intense site preparation practices: blading (i.e., bulldozing) and mowing, and establishment of undeveloped patches in solar fields replicated across three power blocks comprising ISEGS and in undeveloped control sites surrounding ISEGS. We determined that ant abundance, species richness, Shannon Diversity Index, and functional richness was lower in bladed treatments than in all other treatments and controls. For most taxonomic and functional ant responses, we detected no difference between non-bladed treatments and controls; these results suggest that less intensive site preparation and increased spatial heterogeneity (i.e., undeveloped patches in solar fields) reduce negative effects of solar energy development on desert ants. However, our results suggest that ants may serve as useful bioindicators of the severity of anthropogenic disturbance from solar energy development in deserts, and indicator analysis signifies that solar energy infrastructure may negatively affect some species with high ecological value (e.g., harvester ants). Negative effects of solar energy development on ants can have significant implications for desert ecosystem function and integrity, but conservation-minded solar facility design and construction may lead to avoidance of “bottom-up” ecological ramifications of increased solar production during the renewable energy transition.
- Data from: Effects of solar energy development on ants in the Mojave Desertxlsx
Excel file with 4 tabs: Metadata; Abundance, Richness, Shannon; Community...MD5:TIMESTAMP:
|Release Date|| |
|Spatial / Geographical Coverage Area|| |
POINT (-115.470714 35.55653)
Ag Data Commons
|Spatial / Geographical Coverage Location|| |
Ivanpah Solar Power Facility
|Temporal Coverage|| |
April 5, 2018 to May 5, 2018
|Contact Name|| |
|Public Access Level|| |
|Program Code|| |
005:040 - Department of Agriculture - National Research
|Bureau Code|| |
005:18 - Agricultural Research Service