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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Applied Ecology, 1 August 2011, Vol.48(4), pp.916-925
    Description: 1. Shoreline development and the associated loss of littoral habitats represent a pervasive alteration of the ecological integrity of lakes and have been identified as major drivers for the loss of littoral biodiversity world-wide. Little is known about the effects of shoreline development on the structure of, and energy transfer in, littoral food webs, even though this information is urgently needed for management and mitigation measures. 2. We measured macroinvertebrate biomass and analysed potential food resources using stable isotopes (δ¹³C, δ¹⁵N) and mixing models to compare the complexity and the trophic base of littoral food webs between undeveloped and developed shorelines in three North German lowland lakes. 3. The lower diversity of littoral habitats found at developed shorelines was associated with lower diversity of food resources and consumers. Consequently, the number of trophic links in food webs at developed shorelines was up to one order of magnitude lower as compared with undeveloped shorelines. 4. Mixing model analysis showed that consumer biomass at undeveloped shorelines was mainly derived from the particulate organic matter (FPOM) and coarse particulate organic matter of terrestrial origin (CPOM). The contribution of CPOM to consumer biomass was twofold lower at developed shorelines, and consumer biomass was mainly derived from FPOM and suspended particulate organic matter. 5. Synthesis and application. Shoreline development impacts the flow of organic matter within littoral food webs primarily through the reduction in littoral habitat diversity. These effects are exacerbated by clearcutting of the riparian vegetation, which disrupts cross-boundary couplings between the riparian and the littoral zone. Lakeshore conservation should focus on preserving the structural integrity of the littoral zone, while restoration of coarse woody debris, reed and root habitats can be a cost-efficient measure to improve degraded lakeshores. The local effects of shoreline development demonstrated in this study might lead to whole-lake effects, but future studies are needed to derive thresholds at which shoreline development has consequences for the structure and functioning of the entire ecosystem.
    Keywords: Vegetation and Community ecology
    ISSN: 00218901
    E-ISSN: 13652664
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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
    In: Journal of Applied Ecology, December 2007, Vol.44(6), pp.1138-1144
    Description: 1 The shores of many lakes have been substantially altered by human developments such as erosion control structures or recreational beaches. Such alterations are likely to increase in the future, yet almost nothing is known about their impacts on the littoral macroinvertebrate community. 2 Macroinvertebrates were studied in seven German lowland lakes exhibiting natural shorelines (reference), retaining walls, ripraps and recreational beaches to examine impacts on the eulittoral (0–0·2 m water depth) and infralittoral (0·2–1·2 m water depth) communities associated with the three types of shoreline development. 3 Among sites, eulittoral species richness and abundance of Coleoptera, Gastropoda, Trichoptera, shredders and xylophagous species were lowest on beaches and retaining walls but ripraps did not differ significantly from natural shorelines. Retaining walls and ripraps had no significant impact on the infralittoral macroinvertebrate community. Conversely, beaches had significantly lower infralittoral species richness and abundance of Ephemeroptera, Trichoptera and shredders than natural shorelines. Furthermore, species richness was correlated positively with habitat heterogeneity expressed as number of habitat types. 4 Among lakes, whole‐lake littoral macroinvertebrate density increased with increasing proportion of developed shorelines due to increasing abundances of Chironomidae. The remaining macroinvertebrate major groups decreased with increasing proportion of shoreline development. 5 Synthesis and applications. The biological impacts of shoreline development in lowland lakes depend upon the extent to which structural complexity and heterogeneity of littoral habitats are reduced. Hence, we recommend that management programmes focus upon the conservation of littoral habitat complexity and habitat heterogeneity. The biological effects of shoreline development may be assessed efficiently by combining an assessment of the morphological status of lakeshores and information on macroinvertebrate indicator species with a defined response to the loss of their preferred habitats.
    Keywords: Biodiversity ; Coarse Woody Debris ; Habitat Complexity ; Lake Management ; Macrophytes ; Recreational Beaches ; Retaining Walls ; Riparian Clearcutting ; Ripraps
    ISSN: 0021-8901
    E-ISSN: 1365-2664
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  • 4
    In: Fundamental and Applied Limnology / Archiv für Hydrobiologie, June 2015, Vol.186(4), pp.311-321
    Description: Lakeshores are subjected to ongoing increase of human utilization and degradation. The development of effective assessment tools based on littoral macroinvertebrates is currently limited by the lack of knowledge as to whether effects of lakeshore modification on macroinvertebrate communities are mediated by water depth and season. We quantified the macroinvertebrate community of a large lowland lake (Lake Scharmuetzelsee, Germany) at natural shores and shores modified by marinas and beaches in three depth zones between April and November 2011. The effect of lakeshore modification on macroinvertebrate diversity and community composition was most pronounced in the upper littoral and less important in the middle littoral and profundal zone. Conversely, seasonal effects on upper littoral macroinvertebrate diversity and composition were less important than shore type in comparison with the middle littoral and profundal zone. We recommend that future assessment methods based on macroinvertebrates should focus on the upper littoral zone, where effects of lakeshore modifications are strongest and communities are most susceptible to anthropogenic impairments. Our results also suggest that a single seasonal sampling is sufficient to capture the compositional differences of macroinvertebrate communities associated with human lakeshore modifications.
    Keywords: Profundal ; Biodiversity ; Shoreline Development ; Spatial Heterogeneity ; Beach ; Marina
    ISSN: 1863-9135
    E-ISSN: 23637110
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  • 5
    Language: German
    In: Umweltwissenschaften und Schadstoff-Forschung, 2004, Vol.16(1), pp.48-56
    Description: Die EU-Wasserrahmenrichtlinie (EU-WRRL) fordert eine holistische Herangehensweise in Maßnahmen zur Gewässergüteverbesserung Mit der Forderung nach ’mehr Ökologie’ ist die Anwendung von Biodiversitätsindices naheliegend. Will man Biodiversitätsindices verwenden, um Vergleiche durchzuführen, so stellt sich die Frage, ob ein Ranking anhand eines ’Biodiversitätindex unabhängig von der speziellen Wahl des Index ist. Leider ist dies nicht der Fall. Konzepte zur Auflösung des Dilemmas werden aufgezeigt und eine graphische Technik eingesetzt, die bisher nur in der Quantenmechanik, statistischen Mechanik und in der Theoretischen Chemie angewender wurde: Die Technik der YOUNG-Diagramme. Within the context of the EU Water Framework Directive (EUWFD), there is a demand for a holistic quality improvement of aquatic systems. Therefore, it is obvious that biodiversity is one of the quality components and hence has to be considered in detail. The ranking of habitats, based on biodiversity indices, depends on the specific measurement selected. It is postulated that a ranking of habitats by means of a biodiversity index may be ambiguous. Concepts to resolve this dilemma are demonstrated, and a graphical formalism is introduced which up to now has only been used in quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, and theoretical chemistry: The YOUNG-diagram technique.
    Keywords: Areas of protection ; biodiversity ; ecotones ; EU Water Frame work Directive (EU-WFD) ; Lake Constance ; lake shores ; order theory ; YOUNG-Diagrams
    ISSN: 0934-3504
    E-ISSN: 1865-5084
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Ecological Indicators, March 2019, Vol.98, pp.285-296
    Description: Human lake shore alterations often result in a substantial decrease of littoral and riparian habitat diversity and physical complexity, but the intensity at which shore alterations affect biodiversity may differ among European geographical regions. We tested if the response of littoral macroinvertebrate communities to human shoreline alterations is consistent among geographical regions. We compared community composition and diversity of human altered with those of unmodified littoral zones from 51 lakes across seven European countries in four geographical regions based on pooled composite as well as habitat-specific macroinvertebrate samples. Taxon richness and community composition differed among shore types and different habitats in all geographic regions, with morphological alteration having an overall negative effect on macroinvertebrate taxon richness. In addition, habitat heterogeneity also had a strong effect on littoral communities, with highest taxon richness found in the structurally complex macrophyte habitats in all regions. Average proportional densities of Diptera and Oligochaeta taxa generally increased in morphologically altered shores in all geographical regions, while Bivalvia, Crustacea, Ephemeroptera, Gastropoda and Trichoptera showed comparatively lower numbers in many anthropogenically altered sites. Furthermore, taxon richness was positively correlated with habitat diversity. We were able to relate changes in littoral communities to anthropogenic shoreline alterations, and linked the effect to the loss of habitats and habitat complexity. The results of our study demonstrate that littoral macroinvertebrates respond consistently negative to the influence of morphological alterations across European geographical regions in terms of biodiversity. While macroinvertebrates have previously been identified to be useful descriptors of morphological change in single countries/regions, we can now validate that they can be used to assess the ecological status of lakes in terms of morphological alterations across European regions. Our results can be used to further improve ealready existing WFD-compliant multimetric indices, for example by including taxa groups, which show a strong reaction to shoreline alterations. This could be supported by the inclusion of a suit of indicator taxa reflecting the loss of complex habitats such as macrophytes in the lake littoral.
    Keywords: Biodiversity ; Habitat Complexity ; Indicator Species ; Littoral Zone ; Macroinvertebrates ; Morphological Alteration ; Environmental Sciences
    ISSN: 1470-160X
    E-ISSN: 1872-7034
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