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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2013

Do differences in sensitivity between native and invasive amphipods explain their coexistence in Lake Constance? A case study with lambda-cyhalothrin

Bundschuh, Mirco; Gergs, Rene; Schadt, Sebastian; Schulz, Ralf


Invasive species are considered as one of the major threats for biodiversity worldwide. The Ponto-Caspian species Dikerogammarus villosus, for instance, spread throughout continental Europe and was recorded for the first time also within Lake Constance in 2003. Although D. villosus is a highly competitive species it was not capable of replacing the native Ganunarus roeselii completely in this ecosystem, especially in the riparian zones of the highly agriculturally used island "Reichenau". As differences in pesticide sensitivity between both amphipod species may explain their distribution, the present study assessed the implication of the highly toxic pyrethroid lambda-cyhalothrin, which is authorized for application in the Lake Constance region, assuming the invasive species being more sensitive than the native one. However, both the feeding activity bioassays, which measured the leaf consumption over 7 d (n = 20), as well as the predation bioassay, which measured the predation rate upon Baetis nymphs in concert with the feeding activity on leaf material over 96 h (n = 13), revealed an up to 5-fold higher tolerance of D. villosus towards lambda-cyhalothrin. These results suggest the investigated insecticide not being the trigger for the observed distribution pattern of both amphipod species. Hence, other factors like the diversity of habitat structures or the levels of ammonia may have facilitated the coexistence. Nevertheless, the present study uncovered a high leaf-shredding efficacy of the invasive species D. villosus suggesting that its role in the leaf decomposition process may have been underestimated in the past. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Functional feeding group; Insecticide; Leaf litter decomposition; Ecosystem function; Predator-prey interaction; Freshwater biodiversity

Published in

2013, volume: 92, number: 5, pages: 483-489

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment
Gergs, Rene
University of Koblenz-Landau
Schadt, Sebastian
University of Koblenz-Landau
Schulz, Ralf
University of Koblenz-Landau

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG6 Clean water
SDG15 Life on land

UKÄ Subject classification

Other Biological Topics

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