The scales of variability of stream fish assemblages at tributary confluences

I. Czeglédi, P. Sály, P. Takács, A. Dolezsai, S. A. Nagy, T. Erős

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Tributary confluences play an important role in the dispersal of organisms, and consequently, in shaping regional scale diversity in stream networks. Despite their importance in dispersal processes, little is known about how ecological assemblages are organized in these habitats. We studied the scales of variability of stream fish assemblages over three seasons using a hierarchical sampling design, which incorporated three tributaries, three sites at the mouth of each tributary and using four sampling units at each site. We found strong scale dependent variability in species richness, composition and relative abundance. Most of the variation was accounted for by the interactive effect of season, between stream and between site effects, while habitat structure of the sampling units had a relatively minor role. Species richness showed a continuous decrease from the mainstem river in most cases, while species composition and relative abundance changed less consistently along the longitudinal profile. Consequently, we found that not only the junctions presented a strong filter on the species pool, but some species were filtered out if they passed this critical habitat bottleneck. In addition, spatial position of the tributaries along the river also contributed to assemblage variability in the confluences. Overall, our results suggest high variability in fish assemblages across multiple scales at tributary confluences. Environmental management should take a more critical care on the filtering role of tributary confluences in species dispersal, for better understanding patterns and processes in the branches of dendritic stream networks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalAquatic Sciences
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Nov 27 2015

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confluence
tributary
fish
species diversity
habitats
species dispersal
rivers
relative abundance
environmental management
sampling
species richness
mouth
species pool
site effect
habitat structure
habitat
river
organisms
filter

Keywords

  • Dispersal
  • Ecotones
  • Environmental filtering
  • Habitat bottlenecks
  • Stream networks
  • Tributaries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

The scales of variability of stream fish assemblages at tributary confluences. / Czeglédi, I.; Sály, P.; Takács, P.; Dolezsai, A.; Nagy, S. A.; Erős, T.

In: Aquatic Sciences, 27.11.2015, p. 1-14.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Czeglédi, I. ; Sály, P. ; Takács, P. ; Dolezsai, A. ; Nagy, S. A. ; Erős, T. / The scales of variability of stream fish assemblages at tributary confluences. In: Aquatic Sciences. 2015 ; pp. 1-14.
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