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Title: Environmental variability, historical contingency, and the structure of regional fish and macroinvertebrate faunas in Ouachita Mountain stream systems

Author: Williams, Lance R.; Taylor, Christopher M.; Warren, Melvin L. Jr.; Clingenpeel, J. Alan;

Date: 2003

Source: Environmental Biology of Fishes 67: 203-216, 2003.

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: In 1990-1992, the United States Forest Service sampled six hydrologically variable streams paired in three different drainage basins in the Ouachita Mountains, Arkansas, U.S.A. Fishes, macroinvertebrates, and stream environmental variables were quantified for each stream. We used these data to examine the relationship between regional faunas (based on taxonomy and trophic affiliation of fishes and macroinvertebrates) and measured environmental variables. Because fishes are constrained to their historically defined drainage basins and many insect taxa are able to cross basin barriers, we anticipated that both groups would respond differently to environmental variability. Fishes were influenced more by environmental variability that was unique to their historical drainage basins, but macroinvertebrates were associated more strongly with environmental variability that was independent of drainage basins. Thus, the individual drainage basins represented a historical constraint on regional patterns of fish assembly. For both fishes and macroinvertebrates, groupings based on taxonomy and trophic affiliation showed a similar response to environmental variability and there was a high degree of association between taxonomic and trophic correlation matrices. Thus, trophic group structure was highly dependent on the taxonomic make-up of a given assemblage. At the basin-level, fish and macroinvertebrate taxa were associated more strongly with environmental variability than the trophic groups, and these results have implications for basin-level studies that use trophic groupings as a metric to assess ecological patterns. Trophic categories may not be a useful ecological measure for studies at large spatial scales.

Keywords: assemblage structure, biogeography, canonical correspondence analysis, drainage basin, environmental gradients, local versus regional effects, Mantel test, multivariate analysis, variance partitioning

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Williams, Lance R.; Taylor, Christopher M.; Warren, Melvin L., Jr.; Clingenpeel, J. Alan 2003. Environmental variability, historical contingency, and the structure of regional fish and macroinvertebrate faunas in Ouachita Mountain stream systems. Environmental Biology of Fishes 67: 203-216, 2003.

 


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