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Article
Direct and Indirect Effects of an Invasive Planktonic Predator on Pelagic Food Webs
Limnology and Oceanography
  • Angela L. Strecker, Portland State University
  • Beatrix E. Beisner, University of Quebec at Montréal
  • Shelley E. Arnott, Queen's University - Kingston, Ontario
  • Andrew M. Paterson, Dorset Environmental Science Centre
  • Jennifer G. Winter, Ontario Ministry of the Environment
  • Ora E. Johannsson, Canadian Center for Inland Waters
  • Norman D. Yan, York University
Document Type
Article
Publication Date
1-1-2011
Subjects
  • Aquatic environment,
  • Food web,
  • Pelagic zone,
  • Predation (Biology),
  • Plankton
Abstract
The relative importance of top-down invader effects relative to environmental drivers was determined by sampling crustacean zooplankton, rotifer, and phytoplankton communities in a set of invaded and noninvaded reference lakes. The non-native invertebrate predator Bythotrephes had significant effects on zooplankton community size structure, rotifers, and phytoplankton taxonomic composition, but no significant effects on crustacean zooplankton taxonomic and functional group composition. Part of the variation in phytoplankton communities was explained by the presence of the invader. Because Bythotrephes is generally known to be a carnivore and to not consume phytoplankton, this effect is likely mediated by the zooplankton community’s response to environmental gradients. Although Bythotrephes appears to indirectly alter phytoplankton composition in invaded lakes, there was no evidence of a trophic cascade, and edible phytoplankton biovolume did not increase in invaded lakes. These complex direct and indirect interactions suggest that effects of invaders may be highly context-dependent, and therefore pose a significant challenge for predicting wider community and ecosystem responses.
Description

Copyright 2011 by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, Inc.

Archived with publisher and author permissions. All articles published in Limnology & Oceanography are moved into Open Access after three years.

DOI
10.4319/lo.2011.56.1.0179
Persistent Identifier
http://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/11351
Citation Information
Strecker, A.L., B.E. Beisner, S.E. Arnott, A.M. Paterson, J. Winter, O.E. Johannsson, and N.D. Yan. 2011. Direct and indirect effects of an invasive planktonic predator on pelagic food webs. Limnology and Oceanography 56: 179-192.