Ann. Limnol. - Int. J. Lim.
Volume 51, Number 4, 2015
|Page(s)||343 - 349|
|Published online||15 January 2016|
Three-dimensional microdistribution of Chironomus balatonicus larvae (Chironomidae, Diptera) in soft sediments from the Vistula Lagoon (South Baltic Sea)
Department of Fisheries Oceanography and Marine Ecology, National Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Kołłątaja 1, 81-332 Gdynia, Poland
* Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 9 November 2015
Despite the worldwide distribution and ecological importance of Chironomus larvae in both freshwater and brackish water ecosystems, patterns of their spatial distribution have been rarely studied. This study was conducted in summer, spring and autumn (2010–2011) in the deep-water zone of the polymictic, strongly eutrophic Vistula Lagoon. Its objective was to test whether temporal changes in density of the larvae affect their horizontal microdistribution and burrowing depth. Horizontal distribution, as inferred from indices of dispersion and patchiness, was density-dependent. The larvae spread more regularly with increasing density. The decreased density was associated with an increase in clustered distribution. The larvae burrowed into sediments up to a depth of 25 cm. The maximum burrowing depth positively correlated with total density, but also depended on the size of the larvae. The smallest individuals (<10 mm) did not occur deeper than 5 cm. Larger larvae were encountered throughout the sediment profile. The largest larvae did not always burrow the deepest. In spring before pupation, the larvae gathered below the sediment surface.
Key words: Macroinvertebrates / vertical distribution / aggregation pattern / dispersion / size-structure
© EDP Sciences, 2016
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