Macroinvertebrate assemblages of the post-mining calcareous stream habitats: Are they similar to those inhabiting the natural calcareous springs?
|Year of publication||2019|
|Type||Article in Periodical|
|Magazine / Source||ECOLOGICAL ENGINEERING|
|MU Faculty or unit|
|Keywords||spoil heap; post-mining brooks; spring fens; macroinvertebrates; biodiversity; conservation|
|Description||Surface coal mining severely affects natural ecosystems, though it might also result in an establishment of biologically unique anthropogenic habitats. We studied spontaneously created post-mining calcareous brooks located at the brown coal spoil heap in the Sokolov coal basin (Czechia). Despite their extreme water conditions, linked most to the ionic mixture of dissolved ions (mainly SO4, Ca and Mg), and ferric hydroxide precipitations, we recorded unexpectedly species-rich assemblages there (150 species), including several spring fen specialists (31 species) and eight threatened red-listed species. Macroinvertebrate assemblages of post-mining calcareous habitats were compared with those reported from natural brooks draining Western Carpathians calcareous spring fens. The species richness found in the post-mining calcareous brooks was significantly lower than that of the natural calcareous spring brooks. Although we found 29% of species recorded in the two study systems in common (i.e. 80 species), species composition of their assemblages was systematically distinct. This suggests a possible role of environmental filtering in the post-mining brooks and/or dispersal limitation of some species typical for natural calcareous spring brooks (e.g. Trichodrilus strandi, Bythinella austriaca). In contrast, many macroinvertebrates, particularly those of high dispersal capacities (i.e. Odonata, Coleoptera and Diptera), can recognize post-mining calcareous brooks as surrogate habitats for the natural calcareous spring brooks.|