Title: Spatial variance of profundal and sublittoral invertebrate benthic communities in response to eutrophication and morphological pressures
Citation: FUNDAMENTAL AND APPLIED LIMNOLOGY vol. 180 no. 2 p. 101-110
Publication Year: 2011
JRC N°: JRC66944
ISSN: 1863-9135
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC66944
DOI: 10.1127/1863-9135/2012/0206
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Invertebrate communities inhabiting different lake zones (littoral, sublittoral and profundal) are expected to respond differently to natural environmental variation and anthropogenic stressors. We used multivariate statistical methods in order to quantify the effects of eutrophication and morphological pressures on the spatial structure of the invertebrate benthic communities at two depth zones (profundal and sublittoral) in subalpine lakes. In both lake zones, environmental variables related to eutrophication pressures (mid-lake TP and chla) were significant in structuring the invertebrate community (forward selection: p<0.01). Three variables related to morphological pressures (diversity of macrophyte growth form types, sum of pressures and percentage of natural land cover within a 200 m stretch from the lake shore) were significant (forward selection: p<0.01) in the sublittoral zone, while in the profundal zone none of the variables included in the analysis related to morphological pressures was significant. Variance partitioning analysis showed that profundal communities were mainly affected by eutrophication (8.55% of total variance; p=0.005), while in the sublittoral zone eutrophication accounted for only 0.49% (p=0.04). The effects of morphological pressures could be tracked only in the sublittoral zone, where it accounted for 0.82% of total variance (p=0.015). The spatial component was responsible for large part of the total variance (58.66% in the profundal, p=0.005; 44.18% in the sublittoral zone, p=0.005) and had interactions with stressor variables in both lake zones. Therefore the analysis of spatial patterns should be included in assessment systems relating invertebrate assemblages to pressures.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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