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Aquatic insects of spring fens: individual species responses to the main environmental gradients

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Year of publication 2015
Type Conference abstract
Description The role of local environmental conditions in structuring insect assemblages at springs is relatively well explored. In contrast, there are virtually no data on how these gradients affect populations of individual species, thus which species determine the response of the entire assemblages. We selected seven independent predictors (amount of calcium + magnesium, discharge, water temperature, proportion of inorganic substratum, FPOM, CPOM, and mean air temperature in July) and analysed their effects on populations of 34 insect species inhabiting most frequently the Western Carpathian spring fens (at least 25 sites out of 59). We found that discharge and water temperature were the most influential predictors (40% of species). Generalists responded mainly to discharge and also to organic substratum (FPOM, CPOM). Spring-fen specialists were affected by water temperature or mineral richness or both factors. A considerable number of specialists, however, did not respond to any analysed predictor and their populations were probably determined by different factors. We provided the first information about individual species responses to abiotic conditions at spring fens, though for eight species no clear response was identified. This study was financially supported by Czech Science Foundation P505/11/0779.
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