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Effects of adult common carp (Cyprinus carpio) on multiple trophic levels in shallow mesocosms

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Abstract:

We examined the effects of adult common carp (Cyprinus carpio) on shallow aquatic ecosystems and compared the effects with those of a native benthic fish, channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus). Experimental ponds contained enclosures (0.06 ha) with a low carp biomass (174 kg·ha–1), high carp biomass (476 kg·ha–1), high catfish biomass (416 kg·ha–1), and no fish. We measured abiotic factors (turbidity, suspended solids, total phosphorus), as well as effects on adjacent trophic levels (aquatic macrophytes, zooplankton, and aquatic macroinvertebrates) from July to September. Common carp was positively related to total phosphorus, turbidity, suspended solids, and zooplankton biomass, and negatively related to macrophyte and macroinvertebrate abundance. Suspended solids in the carp treatments consisted primarily of inorganic particles. Carp were either positively or negatively related to phytoplankton, depending on zooplankton abundance. A high biomass of carp had greater effect on nutrients, turbidity, and suspended solids than a low biomass. Channel catfish was positively related to total phosphorus concentrations and altered zooplankton composition, but did not affect turbidity, suspended solids, macroinvertebrates, and macrophytes. These results suggest that common carp have a stronger influence on water quality and aquatic community structure than benthic fish native to North America.

Nous avons comparé les effets de la carpe adulte (Cyprinus carpio) sur les écosystème aquatiques peu profonds à ceux d'un poisson benthique indigène, la barbue de rivière (Ictalurus punctatus). Nos étangs expérimentaux contenaient des enclos (0,06 ha) à faible biomasse de carpe (174 kg·ha–1), à forte biomasse de carpes (476 kg·ha–1) et à forte biomasse de barbues (416 kg·ha–1), ainsi que des enclos sans poissons. Nous avons mesuré les facteurs abiotiques (turbidité, solides en suspension, phosphore total), de même que les effets sur les niveaux trophiques adjacents ( macrophytes aquatiques, zooplancton et macroinvertébrés aquatiques) de juillet à septembre. Il y a une relation positive entre la carpe et le phosphore total, la turbidité, les solides en suspension et la biomasse du zooplancton, et une relation négative avec l'abondance des macrophytes et des macroinvertébrés. Les solides en suspension dans les expériences avec les carpes sont surtout des particules inorganiques. La carpe est en relation positive ou négative avec le phytoplancton, selon l'abondance du zooplancton. Une forte biomasse de carpes affecte plus les nutriments, la turbidité et les solides en suspension qu'une faible biomasse. Les barbues sont en relation directe avec les concentrations de phosphore total et elles modifient la composition du zooplancton, mais elles restent sans effet sur la turbidité, les solides en suspension, les macroinvertébrés et les macrophytes. Nos résultats indiquent que la carpe a un effet plus prononcé sur la qualité de l'eau et sur la structure de la communauté aquatique que des poissons benthiques indigènes d'Amérique du Nord.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2003

More about this publication?
  • 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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