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  • SpringerLink  (14)
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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2016, Vol.768(1), pp.37-50
    Description: Length–mass relationships are widely used to estimate body mass from body dimensions for freshwater macroinvertebrates. The relationships are influenced by environmental conditions and should be applied within ecosystems and geographic regions similar to those for which they were estimated. However, very few relationships exist for littoral macroinvertebrates, and thus we provide length–mass relationships for macroinvertebrates from lakes of the Central European lowlands. We compared log-linear and nonlinear methods for fitting length–mass relationships and tested the smearing factor for removing bias in mass predictions from log-linear models. We also estimated conversion factors to correct for mass changes during ethanol preservation and assessed the transferability of our results to different geographical regions. We showed that the log-linear approach gave better results in fitting length–mass relationships, while residuals showed that nonlinear models over-predict the mass of small individuals. The smearing correction factor successfully removed bias introduced by log transformation, and relationships transferred well between lakes in the same and different geographical regions. In total, 52 bias-corrected length–mass relationships are provided for littoral macroinvertebrates that are applicable also to lakes in geographic regions with similar environmental conditions, such as the Central European lowlands or the temperate lowland zone of America.
    Keywords: Preservation conversion factor ; Smearing factor ; Length–mass relationships ; Macroinvertebrates ; Additive vs. multiplicative errors ; Log-linear vs. nonlinear regression
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2017, Vol.799(1), pp.37-48
    Description: Ephemeral ponds are often dominated by species with both terrestrial and aquatic life phases. Such species have the potential to strongly alter the food web structure of ponds, particularly if they are predators. Here we experimentally tested the effects of salamander larvae ( Salamandra salamandra ) on invertebrate communities in ephemeral forest ponds. We repeatedly split two ponds into salamander enclosure- and exclosure-segments, and compared the diversity and biomass of potential prey organisms. We used stable isotopes of carbon (δ 13 C) and nitrogen (δ 15 N) of resources and consumers to characterise the food web structure. The presence of salamander larvae did not affect abundances of culicid larvae, their preferred prey. The population dynamics of most insect larvae was independent of the presence of salamander larvae, and was instead driven by the timing of hatching and emergence. However, a significant reduction resulting from salamander predation could be detected in the less abundant chironomid larvae. There was no substantial alteration of the food web structure as indicated by stable isotopes. However, the stable isotope results suggest a strong trophic subsidisation from the terrestrial system, which is probably the reason for the weak top-down effects of the salamander larvae on the invertebrate food web.
    Keywords: Biodiversity ; Salamandra salamandra ; Top-down ; Trophic cascades ; Aquatic-terrestrial linkage
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2016, Vol.776(1), pp.51-65
    Description: This study addressed the influence of common shoreline engineering structures (off-bankline revetment, rip rap and wing dike) on richness, biomass and secondary production of native and non-native macroinvertebrates in the navigation channel and near-shore habitats in the Elbe River (Germany). Within the navigation channel, only marginal differences among engineering structures were observed, and non-native species were absent from all samples. At the shoreline, secondary production of non-native species was significantly greater at the rip rap and represented 59% of total secondary production in near-shore habitats. Conversely, secondary production of native species at the shoreline was 9-fold lower at the rip rap and more than twice the rates at the wing dike. Differences in secondary production among engineering structures were attributed to differential distribution of substrate types. Boulder substrates, the dominant substrate type in the rip rap, promoted contributions of non-native species while macrophytes and silt were associated with high contributions of native species at the off-bankline revetment. Our results reveal that the morphological configuration of engineering structures in large rivers not only controls the rate of secondary production for macroinvertebrates but also the contribution of non-native species to total community functioning.
    Keywords: Ecosystem functioning ; Elbe River ; Dikerogammarus villosus ; Neozoa ; Non-native species ; River engineering
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2013, Vol.717(1), pp.147-159
    Description: Reduction of flow constitutes one of the most severe human alterations to rivers, as it affects the key abiotic feature of these ecosystems. While there has been considerable progress in understanding the effects of reduced flow on benthic macroinvertebrates, cascading effects of flow reduction on dissolved oxygen concentrations (DO) have not yet received much attention. We compared the macroinvertebrate composition between reference conditions and a situation after several years of discharge reduction in the Spree River (Brandenburg, Germany). Community composition shifted from rheophilic species to species indifferent to flow conditions. Filter feeders were partially replaced by collector/gatherers, which likely reduces the retention of organic matter, and thus the self-purification capacity of the river section. These shifts were associated with low discharge during summer, cascading into daily DO concentration minima of less than 5 mg l −1 which prevailed 74% of the days in summer. This depletion of DO after flow reduction presumably caused the observed species turnover. Hence, flow reduction in lowland rivers may not only directly impair the ecological functions provided by benthic macroinvertebrates but may also act indirectly by depleting DO concentrations.
    Keywords: Low flow ; Dissolved oxygen ; Discharge ; Functional feeding groups ; Flow preferences ; Spree River
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2010, Vol.649(1), pp.365-373
    Description: Littoral macroinvertebrates are increasingly used for assessing the ecological status of lakes according to the EU Water Framework Directive. This requires harmonised sampling methods, but information on the appropriate spatial scale of the sampling as well as on the adequate sample sizes are mostly lacking. In this study, we compared the spatial variability of littoral (〈1.2 m water depth) macroinvertebrate community composition within habitats and within sites to test whether habitat-specific sampling can reduce their spatial variability. Furthermore, we determined the sample size necessary to obtain maximum species richness for a given habitat type. Spatial variability of macroinvertebrate community composition was significantly lower within habitats than within sampling sites, except for communities of coarse woody debris. Species–area curves revealed that a sample size of 1 m 2 per habitat was not sufficient to obtain the maximum species richness due to the dominance of rare species, which suggests that compilation of taxon inventories may require more exhaustive sampling with sampling sizes substantially larger than 1 m 2 . Separate analysis for species assigned to incidence classes showed that a mean area of 0.63 m 2 per habitat is sufficient to record all species with frequent and medium incidences, and 76% of the rare species. We conclude that habitat-specific sampling is an effective way to reduce the inherent spatial variability of littoral macroinvertebrate communities and that a sample size of 0.63 m 2 per habitat is sufficient to represent their dominant and subdominant elements. The application of this adequate sample size to other lake types than large oligotrophic lakes has to be exercised with caution, in particular if community composition and richness patterns differ. However, our results are based on data from lakes that represent the typical lake type found throughout the Central Baltic ecoregion ensuring its wider applicability in this ecoregion.
    Keywords: Coarse woody debris ; Spatial variability ; Species richness ; Species–area curves ; Water Framework Directive
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2016, Vol.767(1), pp.207-220
    Description: Lake shores are characterised by a high natural variability, which is increasingly threatened by a multitude of anthropogenic disturbances including morphological alterations to the littoral zone. The European Water Framework Directive (EU WFD) calls for the assessment of lake ecological status by monitoring biological quality elements including benthic macroinvertebrates. To identify cost- and time-efficient sampling strategies for routine lake monitoring, we sampled littoral invertebrates in 32 lakes located in different geographical regions in Europe. We compared the efficiency of two sampling methodologies, defined as habitat-specific and pooled composite sampling protocols. Benthic samples were collected from unmodified and morphologically altered shorelines. Variability within macroinvertebrate communities did not differ significantly between sampling protocols across alteration types, lake types and geographical regions. Community composition showed no significant differences between field composite samples and artificially generated composite samples, and correlation coefficients between macroinvertebrate metrics calculated with both methods and a predefined morphological stressor index were similar. We conclude that proportional composite sampling represents a time- and cost-efficient method for routine lake monitoring as requested under the EU WFD, and may be applied across various European geographical regions.
    Keywords: Morphological alteration ; Macroinvertebrates ; Lake monitoring ; Method comparison ; Littoral zone ; EU Water Framework Directive
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2015, Vol.749(1), pp.31-42
    Description: Food-web effects of winterkill are difficult to predict as the enhanced mortality of planktivorous fish may be counterbalanced by an even higher mortality of piscivores. We hypothesised that a winterkill in a clear and a turbid shallow lake would equalise their fish community composition, but seasonal plankton successions would differ between lakes. After a partial winterkill, we observed a reduction of fish biomass by 16 and 43% in a clear-water and a turbid small temperate lake, respectively. Fish biomass and piscivore shares (5% of fish biomass) were similar in both lakes after this winterkill, but young-of-the-year (YOY) abundances were higher in the turbid lake. Top-down control by crustaceans was only partly responsible for low phytoplankton biomass at the end of May following the winterkill in both lakes. Summer phytoplankton biomass remained low in the clear-water lake despite high abundances of YOY fish (mainly roach). In contrast, the crustacean biomass of the turbid lake was reduced in summer by a high YOY abundance (sunbleak and roach), leading to a strong increase in phytoplankton biomass. The YOY abundance of fish in shallow eutrophic lakes may thus be more important for their summer phytoplankton development after winterkill than the relative abundance of piscivores.
    Keywords: Anoxia ; Fish ; Regime shifts ; Roach ; Shallow lakes ; Submerged macrophytes
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 2015, Vol.22(13), pp.9864-9876
    Description: The aim of this study was to assess land use effects on the density, biomass, and instantaneous secondary production (IP) of benthic invertebrates in a fifth-order tropical river. Invertebrates were sampled at 11 stations along the Rio das Mortes (upper Rio Grande, Southeast Brazil) in the dry and the rainy season 2010/2011. Invertebrates were counted, determined, and measured to estimate their density, biomass, and IP. Water chemical characteristics, sediment heterogeneity, and habitat structural integrity were assessed in parallel. Total invertebrate density, biomass, and IP were higher in the dry season than those in the rainy season, but did not differ significantly among sampling stations along the river. However, taxon-specific density, biomass, and IP differed similarly among sampling stations along the river and between seasons, suggesting that these metrics had the same bioindication potential. Variability in density, biomass, and IP was mainly explained by seasonality and the percentage of sandy sediment in the riverbed, and not directly by urban or agricultural land use. Our results suggest that the consistently high degradation status of the river, observed from its headwaters to mouth, weakened the response of the invertebrate community to specific land use impacts, so that only local habitat characteristics and seasonality exerted effects.
    Keywords: Benthic community ; Ecosystem processes ; Land use impacts ; Agriculture ; Urbanization ; Bioindication
    ISSN: 0944-1344
    E-ISSN: 1614-7499
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Aquatic Sciences, 2015, Vol.77(2), pp.307-314
    Description: Stable isotope techniques are widely applied in aquatic food web research to infer trophic position or to estimate the relative contributions of different dietary resources. The accurate consideration of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) discrimination in organisms is a critical prerequisite for such studies. Isotopic discrimination of invertebrates may differ systematically between temperate and tropical freshwater environments, but there are little data available on discrimination factors of tropical invertebrates. Here, we analyzed the C (Δ 13 C) and N discrimination (Δ 15 N) of eight taxa of benthic freshwater invertebrates from a Southeastern Brazilian tropical catchment, six predator and two shredder species. Predators showed a high variability in Δ 13 C (−1.5 to 1.3; min–max), but shredders exhibited a lower variability and had negative Δ 13 C values (−2.1 to −1.8). Values of Δ 15 N were also highly variable among both predators and shredders, but shredders had negative and lower values (−0.9 to −0.1) than predators (0.0 to 9.1). Tissue turnover rates were equal to or higher than 0.02 d −1 for all invertebrates, suggesting that experiment durations of 50 days may be sufficient for future isotopic discrimination experiments with tropical freshwater invertebrates. Our results suggest that Δ 13 C enrichment, and to a minor degree also Δ 15 N enrichment, may not always occur in tropical freshwater invertebrates.
    Keywords: Carbon and nitrogen fractionation ; Stable isotopes ; Riverine food webs
    ISSN: 1015-1621
    E-ISSN: 1420-9055
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: Hydrobiologia, 2008, Vol.613(1), pp.5-12
    Description: East-German lowland lakes are highly susceptible to climatic changes, as most lakes are groundwater fed and strongly dependent on the balance of precipitation and evapotranspiration in their catchments. As a significant decrease of precipitation at least during summer is forecasted, a substantial and permanent reduction of lake water levels can be expected. Water-level fluctuations will predominantly affect the eulittoral zone where submerged tree roots form an important habitat type in lowland lakes that will become unavailable for eulittoral invertebrates. Hence, we compared the invertebrate community from eulittoral root habitats with those of infralittoral habitats to test which components of the invertebrate community would be potentially affected by the loss of root habitats, and whether infralittoral habitat types could mitigate these effects. Species richness did not significantly differ between eulittoral roots and the infralittoral habitat types. Community composition of roots significantly differed from that of coarse woody debris, sand and stones but not from reed habitats. Abundances of Coleoptera, Trichoptera and abundances of piercer, predator, shredder and xylophagous species were significantly lower on sand than on roots. Conversely, there were no significant differences in community measures between reed and root habitats except abundances of Coleoptera. Our results suggest that the loss of eulittoral root habitats will cause a significant alteration of the littoral invertebrate community. This could be mitigated if unimpaired reed habitats are available in the infralittoral zone which may serve as a refuge for most species typical for root habitats. Our results need to be verified by direct observations, especially as the extent of future water-level fluctuations is currently not assessable and might be more severe than assumed.
    Keywords: Climate change ; Habitat–species relationships ; Reed ; Roots
    ISSN: 0018-8158
    E-ISSN: 1573-5117
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