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The Structure of an Acid Moorland Pond Community

David Griffiths
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 42, No. 2 (Jun., 1973), pp. 263-283
DOI: 10.2307/3284
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3284
Page Count: 21
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The Structure of an Acid Moorland Pond Community
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Abstract

(1) The spatial relations of the plants and animals comprising an acid moorland pond community were investigated. (2) Of the plant species Juncus and Potamogeton were found in the shallow water and Glyceria in the deeper water. (3) There was no obvious difference in the fauna of the two zones and no sharp change in faunal composition corresponding with the floral change. (4) All the animals, except Sialis, had aggregated distributions. This was due to environmental heterogeneity, some areas being more suitable for a species than others. (5) An inverse relationship between the abundances of the animals (in terms of biomass) and the degree of aggregation was demonstrated for the animals from each zone. (6) The associations between plants, plants and animals, and between animals were measured by a rank correlation coefficient. In the Glyceria zone the majority of the animals were associated with the plants. (7) In the Juncus-Potamogeton zone the majority of the animals were associated with the Sphagnum/debris/Juncus complex. (8) Species abundances are compared with various models, the best fit being given by the geometric series. The species size distribution is approximately lognormal. (9) The majority of the animals in the pond were feeding on detritus, very little living vegetation being eaten. (10) The rooted vegetation is probably the major source of detritus in the community.

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