Impact of river current on the uniformity of littoral communities of Rotifera

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Abstract

Studies were carried out in September 2007 at a set of stations called RIVERS located on two tributaries of the Narew River, and six stations on the tributaries of the Supraśl River. Concurrently, rotifers were sampled at nine stations of the River Rudnia (called RUDNIA). The aim of the research was the verification of the hypothesis on the uniforming effect of the river drift on rotifer communities inhabiting aquatic vegetation. The total numbers of all monogonont species inhabiting aquatic vegetation of RUDNIA and RIVERS were 83 and 107, respectively. The percentage similarity of rotifer communities from aquatic vegetation and river current at the same stations was relatively low and only slightly higher in RIVERS (21.7%) than RUDNIA (17.1%), which suggests that species composition of communities of epiphytic rotifer fauna has a rather low impact on species structure of rotifer communities in water drift. The set of individuals of different species carried with the water current was random and various at different stations. Although the percentage similarity of rotifer communities in the river drift calculated for all possible pairs of the stations was relatively lower in RIVERS than in RUDNIA, it was not reflected in the similarity of epiphytic rotifer communities, which were similar in both sets of stations. Thus, the hypothesis cannot be confirmed by the results of this research.

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