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Open Access item Fish–habitat relationships and ﬁsh conservation in small coastal streams in southern Spain
|Keywords:||Mediterranean streams, local extinctions, freshwater ﬁsh, longitudinal gradients, small river basins|
|Publisher:||John Wiley & Sons|
|Citation:||Aquatic Conserv: Mar. Freshw. Ecosyst. 15: 415–426 (2005)|
|Abstract:||1. Studies dealing with the ﬁsh fauna of coastal streams are scarce in the scientiﬁc literature, particularly those from Mediterranean climates. Owing to their small size, these systems suﬀer extreme seasonal ﬂuctuations, following the typical Mediterranean ﬂood–drought cycle and leading to a high risk of extinction to freshwater ﬁsh.
2. This work analyses ﬁsh distribution in 14 stream stretches belonging to eight basins in the northern sector of the Strait of Gibraltar (southern Spain). Fish–habitat relationships were studied through multivariate ordination techniques at two scales: basin and stretch.
3. A principal components analysis clearly discriminated larger and more sinuous basins from smaller and steeper ones. This ordination was related to the non-migratory freshwater ﬁsh species richness and to the total number of ﬁsh species present in the middle reaches of each basin.
4. The main sources of variation in community composition and habitat characteristics in the diﬀerent stretches were related to a clear upstream–downstream gradient, along which total species richness increased.
5. These small coastal basins are inhabited by two highly endangered species, Andalusian toothcarp (Aphanius baeticus) and Iberian chub (Squalius pyrenaicus), and have similar or higher overall freshwater species richness than larger adjacent basins. The near absences of ﬂow regulation and introduced species make these streams one of the few types of Iberian aquatic system where unaltered ﬁsh–habitat relationships can be studied.|
|Publisher version (URL):||http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/aqc.679/pdf|
|???metadata.dc.identifier.doi???:||10.1002 / aqc.679|
|Appears in Collections:||(EBD) Artículos|
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