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From the introduction:
"This investigation intends to achieve a macroecological characterization of the Central European spiders. The analysis of large amounts of data enables us to show how the various spider species are distributed among different habitat types. Additional results are presented which concern for example species associations.
A total of 1382 species lists originating from 223 sources were recorded. They comprise 938 spider species and yield a total of 44 574 data sets. Each data set contains the following information:
- habitat type (85 habitat types are distinguished)
- region of the location (Central Europe had been divided into 8 regions)
- collecting method (7 methods)
- stratum where the animals had been collected (7 strata)
- elevation of the location (3 levels)
- abundance of the species in the location (3 levels)
Habitats of Central European Spiders represents to our knowledge the most comprehensive research study characterizing the habitat specificity of Central European spiders. The large amount of available data allows us to relate each spider species to its specific habitat with a high degree of certainty. It is now possible to classify favoured versus avoided habitats. Thus, Habitats of Central European Spiders represents a source of information for all scientists concerned with issues of landscape ecology or nature conservation.
In 1990 the same institution published in its series Documenta Faunistica Helvetiae the Catalogue of Swiss Spiders (Maurer & Hänggi, 1990). The ecological information presented there was based primarily on the personal experience ofthe authors and is restricted to Swiss conditions. Data from the Central European literature surveyed and analysed in the present study can therefore be seen as an addition to Habitats of Central European Spiders and as a logical extension into an ecological direction.
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