Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 548383
Title The significance of refuge heterogeneity for lowland stream caddisfly larvae to escape from drift
Author(s) Brouwer, J.H.F. de; Kraak, M.H.S.; Besse-Lototskaya, A.A.; Verdonschot, P.F.M.
Source Scientific Reports 9 (2019)1. - ISSN 2045-2322
Department(s) Climate Change
Water and Food
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019

The process of macroinvertebrate drift in freshwater lowland streams is characterized by dislodgement, drift distance and subsequent return to the bottom. Refuges are important to all drift phases, since they may help larvae to avoid dislodgement and to escape from drift, even more so if the refuge structure is complex and heterogeneous. The aim of the present study was therefore to determine the influence of refuge heterogeneity on the ability of caddisfly larvae to return to the bottom from drift and to avoid secondary dislodgement. To this purpose a series of indoor flume experiments were undertaken, testing six Limnephilidae (Trichoptera) species, that occur on a gradient from lotic to lentic environments. Bed morphology (plain, refuges with or without leaf patches) and flow velocity (low (0.1 m/s), intermediate (0.3 m/s) and high (0.5 m/s) were manipulated. We showed that all species were favoured by refuges and that especially for species on the lentic end of the gradient (L. lunatus, L. rhombicus and A. nervosa), the ability to escape from drift and to avoid secondary dislodgement was increased. Moreover, we showed that all species spent more time in refuges than in open channel parts and more time in heterogeneous refuges (leaf patches) than in bare refuges, the latter being especially the case for larvae of the lotic species. For lentic species, not well adapted to high flow velocity, refuges are thus crucial to escape from drift, while for the lotic species, better adapted to high flow velocity, the structure of the refuge becomes increasingly important. It is concluded that refuges may play a crucial role in restoring and maintaining biodiversity in widened, channelized and flashy lowland streams.

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