How do butterflies respond to the Mechanical restoration of sagebrush

Working with the the Bureau of Land Management I investigated butterfly communities and abundance within mechanically treated plots in a sagebrush ecosystem in the upper Gunnison Basin of Colorado. Using transect based Distance-sampling techniques I assessed adult butterflies density in treated and untreated plots. I compared butterfly community composition using a multi-variate approach and found only minor differences in butterfly communities across treatments. Some butterfly species occurred at higher densities within treated areas. In addition, treatments significantly affected the distribution of butterflies within plots with greater than expected numbers of butterflies occurring within disturbed areas within treated plots.