Date of Award

1991

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.Sc.

Department

Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Ciberowski, J. J. H.

Keywords

Biology, Ecology.

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

This work addressed the importance of periphyton in influencing lotic macroinvertebrate distribution in the Ausable River (a fifth-order, open-canopy stream) and a tributary, Hobbs-Mackenzie Creek (a third-order, forested stream). A field survey was conducted during June 1988 to determine how periphyton was associated with invertebrate distribution relative to other environmental and physical variables. Detritus (nonliving particulate organic matter, measured as ash-free dry mass) was the habitat variable most strongly related to densities of the 11 most abundant macroinvertebrate taxa. To determine whether or not stream invertebrates move into or out of physically undisturbed areas varying in periphyton abundance, I manipulated periphyton growth by continuously dripping phosphorus (a fertilizer), copper sulphate (an algicide) or water (a control solution) into 1.0 m$\sp2$ streambed patches. This experiment was conducted in the two study streams for an 11 d period during June 1988. Densities of four taxa (Ostracoda, Chironomidae, Hydroptilidae, and Baetis) varied significantly (p $<$ 0.05) among treatments, producing results consistent with an interpretation of animals seeking out periphyton-rich sites. Overall, aquatic macroinvertebrates exhibit weak periphyton-seeking behaviours. However, periphyton may have a stronger influence on invertebrate distribution in more open-canopied rivers such as the Ausable R. than in shaded streams such as Hobbs-Mackenzie Ck. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)Dept. of Biological Sciences. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis1991 .D866. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 30-04, page: 1198. Chair: J. J. H. Ciberowski. Thesis (M.Sc.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 1991.

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