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Habitat structure and juvenile fish ontogeny shape zooplankton spring dynamics

  • Alice Nicolle
  • Lars-Anders Hansson
  • Christer Brönmark
Publishing year: 2010
Language: English
Pages: 119-125
Publication/Series: Hydrobiologia
Volume: 652
Issue: 1
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Springer

Abstract english

Macrophytes in shallow lakes have the potential to alter fish-zooplankton interactions considerably. How far predation effects by newly hatched fish (0+ fish) on zooplankton are influenced by different types of aquatic vegetation, and how effects change during the first weeks of fish ontogeny remains, however, less clear. In order to address these issues, we examined the predation effects of 0+ fish on zooplankton in three different habitats during spring and summer in a shallow, eutrophic lake in Sweden. Zooplankton and fish samples were taken along the reed vegetation, in a shallow, unvegetated part of the lake and above dense, submersed vegetation to relate 0+ fish predation effects to vegetation complexity. All the size classes of zooplankton decreased when 0+ fish started to feed on them in all the different habitats. The magnitude of predation effects depended, however, on both the size of zooplankton and the complexity of the vegetation. While small cladocerans could maintain stable populations in the dense Chara vegetation after 0+ fish had started to feed on them, medium and large-sized zooplankton disappeared from all the habitats. Our results suggest that only small cladocerans can use dense vegetation as a refuge against 0+ fish predation, while medium and large zooplankton are not safe from 0+ fish predation in any habitat.


  • Ecology
  • Predation
  • Juvenile fish
  • 0+fish
  • Macrophytes
  • Zooplankton


  • Centre for Animal Movement Research
  • ISSN: 0018-8158
Lars-Anders Hansson
E-mail: lars-anders [dot] hansson [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se


Aquatic ecology

+46 46 222 41 69






Research group

Aquatic Ecology

Other projects I´m involved in

Doctoral students and postdocs

PhD students, main supervisor

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