Seasonal succession of phytoplankton in a large shallow lake (Balaton, Hungary) - a dynamic approach to ecological memory, its possible role and mechanisms

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Abstract

The phytoplankton Lake Balaton was studied between April and November 1980. In total 417 taxa were found; number of planktonic species was c300. Compared with the few dominants, most species were extremely rare. About 2/3 of the planktonic species were evenly distributed in time, the others exhibited temporal peaks. Based on population dynamics, 100 species (RF >2000-1, ie a relative frequency greater than 500 out of 100 000 specimens) are considered to characterize the community responses to changes in both major and minor resources set by the given pattern of environmental background. Fifteen of these 100 species might have had an allochthonous origin. About half of the 200 rare species are velocity specialists, about to grow rapidly in spatially and temporally randomly distributed, nutrient-rich microenvironments; the other 100 are termed the "ecological memory' of the phytoplankton community. Memory is the capacity of past states or experiences to influence present or future rersponses of the community. The memory of the community comprises all the potential recruit-species which are not completely excluded because of spatial and temporal disturbances (heterogeneity). These species may out-compete the regular dominants of the most probable seasonal successional pattern if the competitive arena changes. -from Author

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-230
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Ecology
Volume80
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology
  • Plant Science

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