Skip to main content

The trophic position of planktonic ciliate populations in the food webs of some East African lakes

Buy Article:

$55.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Abstract:

The trophic role of planktonic ciliates was investigated in the food webs of 17 East African lakes of different salinity and trophy. Experiments with 1m latex beads showed that Cyclidium, Halteria, Dysteria, Aspidisca and Vorticella are bacterivores. Examination of food vacuole contents showed that the ciliate communities also included herbivores, carnivores, omnivores and mixotrophs. While some herbivorous ciliates grazed picoplanktonic algae or flagellates, large omnivores such as Frontonia and Linostoma ingested cyanobacterial filaments or preyed on other ciliates. Most predaceous ciliates were haptorids, and consumed other ciliates or metazoa. Growth rate estimates for planktonic ciliate populations in East African lakes ranged from 0.18 to 6.56d−1. From these growth rates and biomass, the estimated production of ciliate populations ranged from 5.9 to 2 335g carbon l−1 d−1 and increased with lake trophic status and water electrical conductivity. Bacterivores, herbivores, carnivores and mixotrophs accounted for 36%, 39%, 21% and 4% of total production, respectively, over all the lakes. Zooplankton were the probable consumers of much of this ciliate production, although some taxa were consumed mostly within the microzooplankton community, presumably by other ciliates.

Keywords: BIOMASS; CILIATED PROTOZOA; GROWTH RATES; POTENTIAL PRODUCTION; TROPHIC LEVEL

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-01-01

More about this publication?
  • Co-Published by NISC and Taylor & Francis - Subscriber access available here
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
X
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more