The loss of trees with suitable hollows is the greatest threat to this Vulnerable beetle. In managed forests, trees are cut down before any hollows are formed. Therefore, most sites where hermit beetles live today are situated in agricultural and even urban landscapes. Even in these habitats, hollow trees are cut down because they are no longer used (for example, pollarded trees and in plantations of fruit trees or chestnut trees), or to protect humans from accidents (2) (4). In addition, many hollow trees found on pasture woodlands, where gazing has now ceased, suffer from increased competition from younger trees. In many areas, the formation of new suitable trees occurs at a much slower rate than the deterioration of suitable trees, and there is often a great distance between the new trees and dispersal sources, resulting in fragmented hermit beetle populations that are more vulnerable to local extinctions (4).
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