The planktonic community of freshwater Rotifera in 27 subtropical lakes was studied to assess the relative importance of physicochemical factors and crustacean zooplankton as determinants of rotifer density and species distribution. Factor analysis and multiple linear regressions showed that 21.9% and 29.9% of the variance in rotifer density was explained by physicochemical factors and crustaceans, respectively. Larger rotifer density was possible in shallower lakes with higher concentration of inorganic nitrogen and less herbivorous crustaceans such as Sinocalanus dorrii and Daphnia. Redundancy analysis showed that the variances of rotifer species distribution explained by crustaceans and physicochemical factors were 26.9% and 31.0%, respectively. Further analysis demonstrated that the variances explained by pure crustaceans and pure physicochemical factors were 12.5% and 16.6%, respectively. However, these two percentages were not statistically different. Rotifer species distribution was strongly associated with Chl a and Moina micrura. Their coexistence with Crustaceans seemed to be determined by their defense against potential predators and competitors. (C) 2009 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
Ecological studies on macrozoobenthos were conducted in two small plateau lakes in the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, Southwest China: Xingyun Lake (XL), a eutrophic lake whose main source of primary production was phytoplankton (Chl a=99.76 +/- 24.01 mu g/L), and Yangzong Lake (YL), a mesotrophic lake. Sampling was carried out from October 2002 to May 2004. Altogether 23 benthic taxa were identified in XL and 21 taxa in YL. The density of benthos in XL was much lower than that in YL, but the biomass was about equal in the two lakes, being 1 423 ind/m(2) and 8.71 g/m(2) in XL and 4 249 ind/m(2) and 8.60 g/m(2) in YL. The dominant species were Limnodrilus hoffmeisteri, Branchiura sowerbyi, Aulodrilus pluriseta and Chironomus sp. in XL and Limnodrilus hoffmeisteri, Aulodrilus pluriseta and Bellamya sp. in YL. Seasonal fluctuation occurred, showing richer species in summer and winter, but the density and biomass varied in different ways in the two lakes. Analyses on functional feeding groups indicate that collector-gatherers were predominant, but the relative abundances of other groups were different. Stepwise multiple regression analysis demonstrated that the water depth, conductivity and chlorophyll a were the key factors affecting macrozoobenthic abundance in the lakes.
We characterized the responses of benthic macroinvertebrates to heavy metals released from mines in high mountain streams of the Gangqu River in the Shangrila Gorge, China. Benthic macroinvertebrates were collected with a kick-net at 32 sampling sites. In addition, 25 environmental variables including heavy metal concentrations were measured at each sampling site. Although the concentrations of heavy metals were not seriously high, their effects were reflected in the changes of community composition of benthic macroinvertebrates. Total abundance and species richness decreased with increasing heavy metal concentrations. Species richness of Plecoptera and Trichoptera, Margalef richness index, and percentage of scrapers in functional feeding groups were negatively correlated with heavy metal concentrations. A high variation was observed in the response of different taxa to heavy metals. Heavy metals mainly affected the sensitive taxa of Plecoptera, Ephemeroptera, and Trichoptera. However, some tolerant taxa were observed in Trichoptera (such as Hydropsyche sp.) and Dugesia sp. Cluster analysis and a non-metric multidimensional scaling analysis were applied to characterize specific macroinvertebrate taxa composition. The analyses revealed the effects of different environmental factors such as geographical, hydromorphological, physical, and chemical factors including heavy metals on the distribution of benthic macroinvertebrates in high mountain streams. Although the effects were compounded with different factors such as altitude, temperature, stream width, turbidity, and heavy metals, the influence of heavy metals on benthic macroinvertebrate communities was clearly identified (decreased species richness, changes in species composition). Even though the contamination of heavy metals was low in the sampling area, the consequences were clear, indicating that long-term exposure to heavy metals could seriously impact aquatic communities in high mountain streams.
The taxonomy of Coilia has been extensively studied in China, and yet phylogenetic relationships among component taxa remain controversial. We used a PCR-based fingerprinting technique, amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) to characterize and identify all four species of Coilia in China. We examined the genetic relationships of the four species of Coilia and a subspecies of Coilia nasus with AFLP. A total of 180 AFLP loci were generated from six primer combinations, of which 76.11% were polymorphic. The mean genetic distance between pairs of taxa ranged from 0.047 to 0.596. The neighbor-joining tree and UPGMA dendrogram resolved the investigated species into three separate lineages: (1) C. mystus, (2) C. grayii and (3) C. brachygnathus, C. nasus, and C. nasus taihuensis. Phylogenetic analysis of the AFLP data is inconsistent with current morphological taxonomic systems. The AFLP data indicated a close relationship among C. brachygnathus, C. nasus taihuensis, and C. nasus. Therefore, the two species described under Coilia (C. brachygnathus and C. nasus taihuensis) are treated as synonyms of C. nasus.
Located in the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau in southwest China, Fuxian Lake covers an area of 211 km(2), with maximum depth of 155 m. It is known to have a unique fauna, including 14 described endemic species. In order to describe the zoobenthic community of the lake more completely, the present study was conducted from August 2002 to August 2003. Altogether 62 benthic taxa, including 22 oligochaetes, 21 molluscs and 18 insects were identified, of which the dominant taxa belonged to Potamothrix, Procladius and Paraprososthenia. The standing stocks of benthos were much higher in the littoral (824 ind/m(2) in density, 3.72 g/m(2) in biomass) than in the profundal region (23 ind/m(2) in density, 0.10 g/m(2) in biomass). Species richness was greatest in summer and standing stocks were larger in spring and summer than in other seasons. Analyses of functional feeding groups indicated that collector-gatherers and scrapers were predominant in entire lake. Stepwise multiple regression analysis demonstrated that the water depth is the most important factor affecting the distribution of macrozoobenthos. (C) 2008 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
Growth, nitrogen and carbohydrate metabolism in relation to eutrophication were studied for a submerged plant Potamogeton maackianus, a species common in East Asian shallow lakes. The plants were grown in six NH4+-N concentrations (0.05, 0.50, 1.00, 3.50, 5.00 and 10.00 mg/L) for six days. NH4+-N levels in excess of 0.50 mg/L inhibited the plant growth. The relationships between external NH4+-N availability and total nitrogen (TN), protein-N, free amino acid-N (FAA-N) and NH4+-N in plant tissues, respectively, conformed to a logarithmic model suggesting that a feedback inhibition mechanism may exist for ammonium uptake. The response of starch to NH4+-N was fitted with a negative, logarithmic curve. Detailed analysis revealed that the influx NH4+-N had been efficiently incorporated into organic-N and eventually stored as protein at the expense of starch accumulation. These data suggest that this species may be able to tolerate high levels of ammonium when dissolved oxygen is sufficient.
A total of 30 shallow lakes, located along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River, were studied to assess the relative importance of nutrients and zooplankton biomass in determining the phytoplankton biomass in subtropical China. Zooplankton biomass and nutrients both varied greatly in these lakes. Factor analysis and multiple linear regression showed that phytoplankton biomass was positively correlated with TN, NH4+, NO3- and TP, while it did not show any negative relationship to zooplankton biomass. Meanwhile, the phytoplankton biomass showed contrary relationships to the mass ratio of TN/TP in spring and summer, suggesting that in nutrient-richer lakes the dominant phytoplankton species have different preferences for TN/TP ratio. The insignificant top-down control of phytoplankton biomass may be attributed to the dominance of small-sized crustaceans and low crustacean biomass resulting from cyanobacterial dominance and planktivorous fish predation as well as other factors. Thus, it is likely that nutrients were more important than zooplankton biomass in explaining the total variance of phytoplaDkton biomass in these subtropical lakes.
A comparative limnological study was carried out to present a snapshot of crustacean zooplankton communities and their relations to environmental factors to test whether there is a consistent relationship between crustacean biomass and trophic indicators among lake groups with similar trophic conditions. The study lakes showed a wide range of trophic status, with total phosphorus (TP) ranging from 0.008 to 1.448mgL(-1), and chlorophyll a from 0.7 to 146.1 mu g L-1, respectively. About 38 species of Crustacea were found, of which Cladocera were represented by 25 taxa (20 genera), and Copepoda by 13 taxa (I I genera). The most common and dominant species were Bosmina coregoni, Moina micrura, Diaphanosoma brachyurum, Cyclops vicinus, Thermocyclops taihokuensis, Mesocyclops notius and Sinocalanus dorrii. Daphnia was rare in abundance. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that except for four species (D. hyalina, S. dorrii, C. vicinus and M. micrura), almost all the dominant species had the same preference for environmental factors. Temperature, predatory cyclopoids and planktivorous fishes seem to be the key factors determining species distribution. TP was a relatively better trophic indicator than chlorophyll a to predict crustacean biomass. Within the three groups of lakes, however, there was no consistent relationship between crustacean biomass and trophic indicators. The possible reason might be that top-down and bottom-up control on crustaceans vary with lake trophic state. The lack of significant negative correlation between crustacean biomass and chlorophyll a suggests that there was little control of phytoplankton biomass by macrozooplankton in these shallow subtropical lakes. (c) 2007 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
Poyang Lake (Poyang Hu) is located at the junction of the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze (Changjiang) River, covering an area of 3283 km(2). As one of the few lakes that are still freely connected with the river, it plays an important role in the maintenance of the unique biota of the Yangtze floodplain ecosystem. To promote the conservation of Poyang Lake, an investigation of the macrobenthos in the lake itself and adjoining Yangtze mainstream was conducted in 1997-1999. Altogether 58 benthic taxa, including, 22 annelids, 8 mollusks, 26 arthropods, and 2 miscellaneous animals, were identified from quantitative samples. The benthic fauna shows a high diversity and a marine affinity. The standing crops of benthos in the lake were much higher than those in the river, being 659 individuals/m(2) and 187.3g/m(2) (wet mass) in the main lake, and 549 individuals/m(2) and 116.6 g/m(2) in the lake outlet, but only 129 individuals/m(2) and 0.4g/m(2) in the river. The dominant roup in the lake was Mollusca, comprising 63.4% of the total in density and 99.5% in biomass. An analysis of the functional feeding structure indicated that collector-filterers and scrapers were predominant in the lake, up to 42.2% and 24.7% in density and 70.2% and 29.2% in biomass, respectively, while shredders and collector-gatherers were relatively common in the river. The present study was restricted to the northern outlet and the northeast part of Poyang Lake. A scrutiny is required for the remaining areas.