This study examined how land management practices can affect the abundance of several arthropods commonly found in agriculture. This work was done in plots that had been subjected to three successive years of an agronomic experiment that evaluated the effects of a wheat, Triticum aestivum L., cover crop or no cover crop on weed and water management. After the third growing season, pitfall traps were installed and arthropods were collected and identified. At one location, carabids (Coleoptera: Carabidae) were identified to genus. Four of the genera (Amara, Anisodactylus, Harpalus, and Calathus) were more common under no-till conditions. Only one genus (Stenolophus) was more common in tilled plots. Five genera (Amara, Bradycellus, Scarites, Stenolophus, and Calathus) were more common in plots with a history of more weeds caused by less herbicide use. Carabids were not more abundant in plots with fewer weeds after herbicides had been applied. Past presence of a winter cover crop never reduced carabid numbers, but significantly increased members of two genera (Harpalus and Poecilus). As a group, carabids at one location were more common in plots without a history of a cover crop. At another location, more carabids were in tilled than nontilled plots. Crickets (Orthoptera: Gryllidae) were more common under no-till conditions. At all locations, wolf spiders (Araneae: Lycosidae) were more common in plots with no tillage and a previous cover crop. Results suggested that surface residues affected carabids, wolf spiders, and crickets.
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