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Título

Small dams decrease leaf litter breakdown rates in Mediterranean mountain streams

AutorGonzález, José Manuel; Mollá, Salvador; Roblas, Neftalí; Descals, Enric ; Moya, Oscar; Casado, Carmen
Palabras claveDams
Leaf-litter breakdown
Mediterranean streams
Stream functioning
Hyphomycetes
Aquatic invertebrates
Fecha de publicación31-may-2012
EditorKluwer Academic Publishers
CitaciónHydrobiologia 712(1): 117-128 (2013)
ResumenThe damming of rivers and streams alters downstream habitat characteristics and biotic assemblages, and might thus alter stream functioning, although there is not much direct evidence of this impact. In this study we compared breakdown of alder leaves upstream and downstream from 4 small (<1 hm3) dams in 4 Mediterranean mountain streams with no appreciable impact on water temperature and nutrient concentrations. Despite no effect on water characteristics, dams decreased leaf litter breakdown rates. Abundance and biomass of invertebrates and shredders and hyphomycete sporulation rates did not differ between upstream and downstream bags. However, the structure of invertebrate and hyphomycete assemblages did. Especially evident was a drop in limnephilids, which might explain the slower breakdown of leaf litter below dams. These results may help to explain some of the variability found in the literature on the effects of dams on decomposition rates. If dams increase water temperature and nutrient concentrations they may promote faster decomposition, but if dams do not change water characteristics, their impact on detritivore communities may cause slower decomposition rates. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10750-012-1144-7
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/128032
DOI10.1007/s10750-012-1144-7
Identificadoresdoi: 10.1007/s10750-012-1144-7
issn: 0018-8158
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