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Efficient sampling methodologies for lake littoral invertebrates in compliance with the European Water Framework Directive
Citation key Porst2016
Author Porst,G., Miler,O., Donohue,L., Jurca,T., Pilotto,F., Brauns,M., Solimini,A. & Pusch,M.
Pages 207–220
Year 2016
ISSN 1573-5117
DOI 10.1007/s10750-015-2500-1
Journal Hydrobiologia
Volume 767
Number 1
Abstract Lake shores are characterised by a high natural variability, which is increasingly threatened by a multitude of anthropogenic disturbances including morphological alterations to the littoral zone. The European Water Framework Directive (EU WFD) calls for the assessment of lake ecological status by monitoring biological quality elements including benthic macroinvertebrates. To identify cost- and time-efficient sampling strategies for routine lake monitoring, we sampled littoral invertebrates in 32 lakes located in different geographical regions in Europe. We compared the efficiency of two sampling methodologies, defined as habitat-specific and pooled composite sampling protocols. Benthic samples were collected from unmodified and morphologically altered shorelines. Variability within macroinvertebrate communities did not differ significantly between sampling protocols across alteration types, lake types and geographical regions. Community composition showed no significant differences between field composite samples and artificially generated composite samples, and correlation coefficients between macroinvertebrate metrics calculated with both methods and a predefined morphological stressor index were similar. We conclude that proportional composite sampling represents a time- and cost-efficient method for routine lake monitoring as requested under the EU WFD, and may be applied across various European geographical regions.
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