The relative importance of spatial and environmental processes in distribution of benthic chironomid larvae within a large and shallow lake

Diána Árva, Mónika Tóth, Hajnalka Horváth, Sándor A. Nagy, A. Specziár

Research output: Article

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although chironomids are popular model organisms in ecological research and indicators of bioassessment, the relative role of dispersal and environmental filtering in their community assembly is still poorly known, especially at fine spatial scales. In this study, we applied a metacommunity framework and used various statistical tools to examine the relative role of spatial and local environmental factors in distribution of benthic chironomid taxa and their assemblages in large and shallow Lake Balaton, Hungary. Contrary to present predictions on the metacommunity organisation of aquatic insects with winged terrestrial adults, we found that dispersal limitation can considerably affect distribution of chironomids even at lake scale. However, we also revealed the predominant influence of environmental filtering, and strong taxa–environment relationships were observed especially along sediment type, sediment organic matter content and macrophyte coverage gradients. We account that identified reference conditions and assemblages along with specified optima and tolerances of the abundant taxa can contribute to our understanding of chironomid ecology and be utilised in shallow lake bioassessment. Further, we propose that predictive models of species–environment relationships should better take into account pure spatial structuring of local communities and species-specific variability of spatial processes and environmental control even at small spatial scales.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-266
Number of pages18
JournalHydrobiologia
Volume742
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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Chironomidae
larva
lakes
biological assessment
larvae
lake
macrophyte
sediments
sediment
aquatic insects
environmental factor
tolerance
Hungary
insect
ecology
organic matter
prediction
environmental factors
distribution
organisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science

Cite this

The relative importance of spatial and environmental processes in distribution of benthic chironomid larvae within a large and shallow lake. / Árva, Diána; Tóth, Mónika; Horváth, Hajnalka; Nagy, Sándor A.; Specziár, A.

In: Hydrobiologia, Vol. 742, No. 1, 2015, p. 249-266.

Research output: Article

Árva, Diána ; Tóth, Mónika ; Horváth, Hajnalka ; Nagy, Sándor A. ; Specziár, A. / The relative importance of spatial and environmental processes in distribution of benthic chironomid larvae within a large and shallow lake. In: Hydrobiologia. 2015 ; Vol. 742, No. 1. pp. 249-266.
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