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Terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages support fish production in a tropical oligotrophic river.
Oecologia 2018; 186(4):1069-1078O

Abstract

Despite low in situ primary productivity, tropical oligotrophic rivers support highly diverse fish assemblages and productive fisheries. This raises the question, what energy sources support fish production in these ecosystems? We sampled fish and food resources in the floodplain of a nearly pristine, large, oligotrophic river in western Amazonia. We combined data from stomach contents and stable isotopes to test the hypothesis that floodplain forests sustain fisheries in tropical oligotrophic rivers. Analysis of stomach contents from > 800 specimens of 12 omnivorous fish species demonstrated that during the annual flood, forest plant matter dominated diets. Yet, our isotope mixing models estimated that arthropods from the forest canopy made a greater proportional contribution to fish biomass. Most of these arthropods are entirely terrestrial and, therefore, serve as trophic links between forests and fishes. Our results suggest that forest vegetation, particularly fruits, may provide much of the energy supporting metabolism and arthropods contribute significant amounts of protein for somatic growth. Moreover, the importance of terrestrial arthropods in support of fish biomass in oligotrophic rivers depends on interactions between riparian vegetation, terrestrial arthropods and flood pulse dynamics affecting accessibility of arthropods to fishes. The apparent paradox of high fish diversity in an oligotrophic river with low primary productivity may be explained, at least partially, by dynamic terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages. This study further emphasizes the importance of seasonally flooded forests for sustaining fisheries in the Amazon.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Program of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M University, 2258 TAMU, College Station, TX, 77843-2258, USA. sandrabibianacorrea@gmail.com. Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mississippi State University, Box 9680, Mississippi State, MS, 39762, USA. sandrabibianacorrea@gmail.com.Program of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M University, 2258 TAMU, College Station, TX, 77843-2258, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

29455256

Citation

Correa, Sandra Bibiana, and Kirk Winemiller. "Terrestrial-aquatic Trophic Linkages Support Fish Production in a Tropical Oligotrophic River." Oecologia, vol. 186, no. 4, 2018, pp. 1069-1078.
Correa SB, Winemiller K. Terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages support fish production in a tropical oligotrophic river. Oecologia. 2018;186(4):1069-1078.
Correa, S. B., & Winemiller, K. (2018). Terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages support fish production in a tropical oligotrophic river. Oecologia, 186(4), pp. 1069-1078. doi:10.1007/s00442-018-4093-7.
Correa SB, Winemiller K. Terrestrial-aquatic Trophic Linkages Support Fish Production in a Tropical Oligotrophic River. Oecologia. 2018;186(4):1069-1078. PubMed PMID: 29455256.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages support fish production in a tropical oligotrophic river. AU - Correa,Sandra Bibiana, AU - Winemiller,Kirk, Y1 - 2018/02/17/ PY - 2017/11/14/received PY - 2018/02/10/accepted PY - 2018/2/20/pubmed PY - 2019/9/24/medline PY - 2018/2/19/entrez KW - Flood pulse KW - Flooded forest KW - Food web KW - Inland fisheries KW - Trophic subsidy SP - 1069 EP - 1078 JF - Oecologia JO - Oecologia VL - 186 IS - 4 N2 - Despite low in situ primary productivity, tropical oligotrophic rivers support highly diverse fish assemblages and productive fisheries. This raises the question, what energy sources support fish production in these ecosystems? We sampled fish and food resources in the floodplain of a nearly pristine, large, oligotrophic river in western Amazonia. We combined data from stomach contents and stable isotopes to test the hypothesis that floodplain forests sustain fisheries in tropical oligotrophic rivers. Analysis of stomach contents from > 800 specimens of 12 omnivorous fish species demonstrated that during the annual flood, forest plant matter dominated diets. Yet, our isotope mixing models estimated that arthropods from the forest canopy made a greater proportional contribution to fish biomass. Most of these arthropods are entirely terrestrial and, therefore, serve as trophic links between forests and fishes. Our results suggest that forest vegetation, particularly fruits, may provide much of the energy supporting metabolism and arthropods contribute significant amounts of protein for somatic growth. Moreover, the importance of terrestrial arthropods in support of fish biomass in oligotrophic rivers depends on interactions between riparian vegetation, terrestrial arthropods and flood pulse dynamics affecting accessibility of arthropods to fishes. The apparent paradox of high fish diversity in an oligotrophic river with low primary productivity may be explained, at least partially, by dynamic terrestrial-aquatic trophic linkages. This study further emphasizes the importance of seasonally flooded forests for sustaining fisheries in the Amazon. SN - 1432-1939 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/29455256/Terrestrial_aquatic_trophic_linkages_support_fish_production_in_a_tropical_oligotrophic_river_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00442-018-4093-7 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -