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Relationships Between Habitat Preferences, Feeding, Life Cycles of Aquatic Insects & Stream Health Dr. Robert Bohanan University of Wisconsin - Madison.

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Presentation on theme: "Relationships Between Habitat Preferences, Feeding, Life Cycles of Aquatic Insects & Stream Health Dr. Robert Bohanan University of Wisconsin - Madison."— Presentation transcript:

1 Relationships Between Habitat Preferences, Feeding, Life Cycles of Aquatic Insects & Stream Health Dr. Robert Bohanan University of Wisconsin - Madison Center for Biology Education

2 Homage to Santa Rosalia or Why are there so many different kinds of animals? G. E. Hutchinson, 1959 “… Vast numbers of Corixidae were living in the water. At first I was rather disappointed because every specimen of the two species present was a female, and so lacking in most critical diagnostic features, while both sexes of the second slightly smaller species were present in about equal number. … The larger C. punctata was clearly at the end of its breeding season, the smaller C. affinis was probably just beginning to breed. This is the sort of observation than any naturalist can and does make all the time. It was not until I asked myself why the larger species should breed first, and then the more general question as to why there should be 2 and not 20 or 200 species of the genus in the pond, that ideas suitable to present to you began to emerge. These ideas prompted the very general question as to why there are such an enormous number of animal species.”

3 Aquatic Insects Inhabit Virtually Every Possible Freshwater Habitat What are some of the factors that might explain why insects have been so successful in freshwater? –Evolutionary history –Morphology –Physiology –Behavior –Development

4 What living and non-living factors could influence the successful development of an organism from an egg to a sexually reproducing adult in a stream?

5 How might habitat selection affect the life history of an aquatic insect? Substrate for attachment and or shelter Food availability (quality and quantity) Range of current Water temperature and Oxygen Presence and relative abundance of other organisms Others?

6 Stream Order Organic Energy Sources Ecological Communities Coarse Particulate Organic Matter Periphyton Fine Particulate Organic Matter Phytoplankton Zooplankton Dissolved Organic Matter Shredders Grazers Predators Collectors Microbes Collectors Shredders Predators Grazers Microbes Collectors Predators Microbes Channel Width

7 Table 2. Substrate TypeAbundance (#/m 2 ) # of Species Sand Gravel Pebbles & Cobble Leaves Detritus Graphic presentation of Table 2. Abundance (# / square meter) (x) # of species (o) SandGravel Pebbles & Cobble Leaves Detritus o o o o o x x x x x

8 Where’s the Mayfly?

9 Most Aquatic Insects Include a Sexually Mature Winged Adult

10 Mayfly Instars

11 Determining Instars

12 Adaptations?

13 Strong Swimmers

14 Burrowing and Clinging

15 Staying Out of the Current

16 Common Mayfly Habitat Preferences Baetidae Heptageniidae Caenidae Slow - Fast Current, Pools-Riffles, Variety of Substrate Slow-Fast Current, Often in Cobble, Logs, Submersed Vegetation, Leaf Packs Slower Current, Sediments

17 Rare Mayfly Habitat Preferences Ephemeridae Ephemerellidae Leptohyphidae Potamanthidae Isonychidae Slower Current, Sand and Silt Smaller, Cooler Streams, Leaf Packs Slower Current, Variety of Substrates Slower Current, Larger Streams, Gravel, Cobble Faster Current, Variety of Substrate

18 Mayfly Life History Baetidae Heptageniidae Caenidae Ephemeridae Ephemerellidae Leptohyphidae Potamanthidae Isonychidae Often Bivoltine Mostly Univoltine Likely Univoltine Univoltine, some Semivoltine Univoltine Univoltine, some Bivoltine/Multi Univoltine Bivoltine, some Univoltine

19 Trichoptera

20 Living Free

21 Filter Feeding Using Nets

22 How do caddisflies share what may be limited resources? Habitat selection Substrate preferences Resource partitioning –Shredders –Filterers –Collectors –Predators

23 Portable Cases

24 Cases that mimic

25 Using Available Materials

26 Square Cases

27 Using Minerals and Organic Materials

28 Common Caddisfly Habitat Preferences Hydropsychidae Limnephilidae Hydroptilidae Helicopsychidae Moderate-Fast Current, Cobble, Gravel, Submersed Vegetation Slow-Fast Current, Submersed Vegetation, Cobble, Gravel, Sand, Detritus Variety, Submersed Vegetation Variety, Sand

29 Rare Caddisfly Habitat Preferences Uenoidae Brachycentridae Glossosomatidae Psychomyiidae Philopotamidae Phryganeidae Smaller Streams, Cobble Often Smaller, Cooler Streams, Submersed Vegetation, Cobble, Gravel Smaller, Cooler Streams, Cobble Smaller, Cooler Streams, Cobble, Logs Small-Large, Cool-Warm, Cobble, Logs Variety, Slower Current, Submersed Vegetation

30 Caddisfly Life History Hydropsychidae Limnephilidae Hydroptilidae Helicopsychidae Uenoidae Brachycentridae Glossosomatidae Psychomyiidae Philopotamidae Phryganeidae Univoltine, some Bivoltine-Semi Univoltine Univoltine, some Bivoltine Likely Univoltine Semivoltine, some Univoltine Univoltine Likely Univoltine Univoltine

31 Territoriality and Foraging Caddisfly larvae include case- building species Larvae scrape algae from the surface of rocks in streams and rivers What is the relationship of territory size and larval growth?

32 Why Build Cases? Tube-shaped cases appear in Diptera (above) and in Trichoptera (below)

33 Case building in some insect larvae reduces encounter rates and mortality Some case building species had reduced encounter frequency than did some non- case building species Lower encounter frequency also resulted in lower mortality of case builders compared to non-case builders

34 Evolutionarily, why do some species build cases and others not? Cases may not be adaptive, may be a byproduct Cases may be adaptive, but for some species the costs may exceed the benefits What are some potential costs?

35 Evolutionary Costs of Case Construction Building additional cases increases larval mortality Building additional cases prolongs larval development Building additional cases as larvae reduces the number of eggs in adult females


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