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Altered body size distributions in a large river fish community enriched by sewage

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We used two approaches (interspecific upper bound and normalized biomass spectrum, NBS) to study size distributions in a littoral fish community across a natural gradient of epiphytic primary production and at sites enriched by primary-treated sewage. The upper bound of the interspecific density – body size relationship supported universal energetic constraints on the regional assemblage but revealed substantial variation in size distributions at a local scale. Multivariate analysis of the modes composing the NBS suggested possible mechanisms for this local variation in size distributions. Only the largest organisms had higher densities at higher levels of productivity. Densities of smaller organisms could be explained by a combination of habitat characteristics and feeding interactions.

Deux approches, la limite supérieure interspécifique et le spectre normalisé des biomasses, nous ont permis d'étudier la distribution en taille d'une communauté de poissons littoraux le long d'un gradient naturel de productivité primaire épiphytique, ainsi qu'à des sites enrichis par des eaux d'égout qui ont subi un traitement primaire. La limite supérieure de la relation interspécifique entre la densité et la taille appuie l'existence de contraintes énergétiques globales sur la communauté régionale, mais met en lumière d'importantes variations dans la distribution en taille à l'échelle locale. L'analyse multidimensionnelle des modes qui composent le spectre normalisé des biomasses indique l'existence possible de mécanismes pour expliquer cette variation locale dans la distribution des tailles. Seuls les plus grands organismes atteignent des densités plus élevées aux taux plus hauts de productivité. Les densités des organismes plus petits peuvent peut-être s'expliquer par une combinaison de caractéristiques de l'habitat et d'interactions alimentaires.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-05-01

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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