In recent years, the number of areas remaining under the influence of acidity has increased. At all levels of ecosystems, biodiversity decreases with acidification, due to the elimination of species that are most sensitive to low pH. Forest ponds belong to a specific group that varied in location, a huge amount of leaf litter, and isolation from other aquatic environments. They are crucial in the industrial landscape with well-developed industry and human activity. The aim was to investigate the relative importance of water chemistry in explaining snail assemblage compositions and species richness in forest ponds of contrasting pH. Patterns in gastropod communities were determined from an analysis in 26 forest ponds with multivariate gradient analysis. Ponds ranged in a base mean pH from 3.0 to 9.0. pH has been found to be an important factor influencing gastropod fauna. Neutral ponds support diverse communities, typical of small water bodies. In two acidic pond types, snail fauna was different. Among the species characteristic for acidic ponds (pH < 6) were Anisus spirorbis and Aplexa hypnorum. The greatest distinct characterised alkaline ponds with the numerous appearance of alien Physa acuta. The most diverse gastropod fauna was found in neutral ponds, whereas the lowest degree of diversity was found in ponds with the lowest pH. Current knowledge of pH-associated changes in aquatic ecosystems is still incomplete because anthropogenic acidification is a recent phenomenon. It is extremely important in forest habitats, since they react more intensively to climatic factors and are often used in landscape management and planning.
Naturwissenschaften – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 22, 2017
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