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|Habitat segregation among freshwater shrimp species in an Amazonian rainforest stream system
|Silva, Elmo Pereira da
Borba, Gabriel C.
Magnusson, William Ernest
|Volume 65, Número 4, Pags. 674-687
|Resource partitioning is a stabilising mechanism known to maintain species diversity in a variety of environments. Assemblages of stream shrimp species are structured by habitat features and predation. Therefore, segregation along habitat dimensions could facilitate coexistence among species in shrimp assemblages even when segregation is a result of predation pressure by fish species. These ecological interactions take place on a background modulated by biogeographic features, such as connectivity among drainages. However, these generalisations are mainly based on studies undertaken in temperate regions. We investigated whether abundances of rainforest shrimp species are related to habitat dimensions, and whether habitat–abundance relationships might be mediated through fish-assemblage structure and the effect of drainages on connectivity. We detected effects of habitat variation on densities of shrimp species, but the magnitudes of the effects were larger for some species than others. Fish-assemblage composition also affected shrimp densities. Two of the three species of shrimp showed some degree of habitat specialisation, but only along current-velocity, depth, and pH gradients. Habitat segregation among species occurred along the current-velocity and pH gradients. Relationships between density and environmental gradients differed between catchments for only one species and only along the pH gradient. Our findings provide evidence that rainforest-stream shrimp species respond differently to environmental gradients and this could facilitate coexistence among species. However, interactions with fish seem to have a stronger effect on species densities, and consequently species segregation, than direct effects of the environmental gradients, resulting in apparent competition for these resources. © 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
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