The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects

Ptatschek C, Traunspurger W (2014)
Aquatic Ecology 48(3): 285-295.

Journal Article | Published | English

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The meiofaunal community of artificial water-filled tree holes was determined, and the bottom-up effects of different amounts of leaf litter on abundance and diversity were estimated. We assume a positive impact of leaf litter on meiofaunal abundances, species diversity, and trophic links. Plastic cups with different amounts of leaf litter were placed in a beech forest (Teutoburg Forest, Bielefeld, Germany) for 24 weeks. As early as 1 week later, the artificial tree holes were colonized by bdelloid rotifers, tardigrades, and nematodes. Rotifers were dominant throughout the experiment, followed by nematodes and tardigrades. The 29 nematode species that were identified included bacterial and hyphal feeders, with common species such as Plectus cirratus/accuminatus and Aphelenchoides parietinus predominating. Impacts of water volume (up to complete desiccation), pH, and O-2 on the meiofaunal community were not detected, whereas the addition of leaf litter resulted in bottom-up effects. Nematode abundance, especially that of bacterial feeders, and species number increased with increasing leaf input. The predatory nematode Prionchulus muscorum was found only in treatments containing high leaf content. Rotifer abundances were partly negatively affected by the amount of added leaves and, like tardigrades, showed a reversal in their correlation at higher leaf inputs. Our study revealed the fast colonization of small water bodies by meiofaunal organisms and the importance of passively distribution. Furthermore, the results provide a comparison with the meiofaunal community in lakes and soil.
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Ptatschek C, Traunspurger W. The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects. Aquatic Ecology. 2014;48(3):285-295.
Ptatschek, C., & Traunspurger, W. (2014). The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects. Aquatic Ecology, 48(3), 285-295.
Ptatschek, C., and Traunspurger, W. (2014). The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects. Aquatic Ecology 48, 285-295.
Ptatschek, C., & Traunspurger, W., 2014. The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects. Aquatic Ecology, 48(3), p 285-295.
C. Ptatschek and W. Traunspurger, “The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects”, Aquatic Ecology, vol. 48, 2014, pp. 285-295.
Ptatschek, C., Traunspurger, W.: The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects. Aquatic Ecology. 48, 285-295 (2014).
Ptatschek, Christoph, and Traunspurger, Walter. “The meiofauna of artificial water-filled tree holes: colonization and bottom-up effects”. Aquatic Ecology 48.3 (2014): 285-295.
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