Environmental heterogeneity at different scales: key factors affecting caddisfly larvae assemblages in standing waters within a lowland river catchment

Submitted: 13 June 2016
Accepted: 1 November 2016
Published: 8 November 2016
Abstract Views: 3513
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We examined the importance of environmental parameters at different spatial scales influencing the occurrence of caddisfly larvae at different levels of their organization (species, faunistic metrics and functional groups) in lentic floodplain waters, in order to gain information on the ecological status and management of a small lowland river catchment.
At the lowest spatial level – pH, sediment grain size, insolation and the presence of aquatic macrophytes proved significant for caddisfly larvae, at higher and the highest level (including buffer zones and the catchment) – the surface areas of watercourses and the river, distance from standing waters and distance from broadleaf forests, respectively. Rheophilous hydropsychids accounted for 17% of the whole fauna of the examined water bodies. They spread from the river via water during flood in the spring. We also detected some significant correlations between functional groups of caddisfly larvae and parameters describing buffer zones and the river catchment against the sub-catchment type use. Information provided by the Caddisfly Habitat Index showed an overall  good ecological status of the river-floodplain. Caddisfly larvae may be good indicators of numerous factors and processes, but they should be studied comprehensively, at different levels of organization. Our results can be useful for preservation of biodiversity and management of river valleys. We suggest: 1) maintaining the varied structure of aquatic macrophytes in water bodies, 2) securing the long-term presence of broadleaf trees in buffer zones in order to provide detritus input, varied insolation and shelter for caddisflies, 3) limiting drainage activities in the river valley in order to save varied habitats, especially temporary ones, 4) providing heterogeneous landscape in the river catchment (homogenous land use is inappropriate). 

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Supporting Agencies

Ministry of Science and Higher Education in Poland
Edyta Buczyńska, University of Life Sciences, Department of Zoology, Animal Ecology and Wildlife Management
Department of Zoology, Animal Ecology and Wildlife Management; lecturer
Stanisław Czachorowski, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Department of Ecology and Environmental Protection
Department of Ecology and Environmental Protection; associate professor
Paweł Buczyński, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Department of Zoology
Department of Zoology; assistant professor
Joanna Pakulnicka, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Department of Ecology and Environmental Protection
Department of Ecology and Environmental Protection; lecturer
Edyta Stępień, University of Szczecin, Department of Plant Taxonomy and Phytogeography
Department of Plant Taxonomy and Phytogeography; lecturer
Agnieszka Szlauer-Łukaszewska, University of Szczecin, Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Limnology
Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Limnology; assistant professor
Robert Stryjecki, University of Life Sciences, Department of Zoology, Animal Ecology and Wildlife Management
Department of Zoology, Animal Ecology and Wildlife Management; lecturer
Andrzej Zawal, University of Szczecin, Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Limnology
Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Limnology; associate professor

How to Cite

Buczyńska, Edyta, Stanisław Czachorowski, Paweł Buczyński, Joanna Pakulnicka, Edyta Stępień, Agnieszka Szlauer-Łukaszewska, Robert Stryjecki, and Andrzej Zawal. 2016. “Environmental Heterogeneity at Different Scales: Key Factors Affecting Caddisfly Larvae Assemblages in Standing Waters Within a Lowland River Catchment”. Journal of Limnology 76 (2). https://doi.org/10.4081/jlimnol.2016.1535.

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