Polar Biology

, Volume 27, Issue 12, pp 753–766 | Cite as

The moss dwelling testacean fauna of Île de la Possession

  • Sofie Vincke
  • Niek Gremmen
  • Louis Beyens
  • Bart Van de Vijver
Original Paper

Abstract

An ecological study of the moss dwelling testacean fauna (Protozoa, Rhizopoda) on Île de la Possession (Crozet Archipelago, sub-Antarctica) revealed 83 taxa, belonging to 21 genera. The moss flora was dominated by cosmopolitan and ubiquitous taxa, such as Trinema lineare, T. enchelys, Euglypha laevis and E. rotunda. A cluster analysis and a correspondence analysis identified three communities: (1) a Corythion dubium assemblage found in a drier, slightly acidic terrestrial moss vegetation, (2) the Arcella arenaria, and (3) the Difflugiella crenulata assemblages, both characteristic of wetter, circumneutral habitats. The latter typified submerged mosses growing in running water, while the A. arenaria assemblage seemed to prefer mosses in standing waterbodies. Moisture conditions appeared to play a key role in determining the distribution pattern of testacean communities, while pH was only a secondary factor. A logistic regression emphasised the effect of the habitat type in controlling the variance in testacean assemblages. Moreover, the close relationship between bryophyte species and habitat type had a significant influence on the distribution pattern of the testate amoebae. Weighted averaging and calibration were used to estimate moisture optima and tolerances of the testate amoebae.

Notes

Acknowledgements

The sampling was made possible by the logistic and financial support of the French Polar Institute in the frame of the Terrestrial Program 136 (Dr. Yves Frenot and Ir. M. Lebouvier, Université de Rennes, France). Additional funding was provided by the Science Foundation, Flanders (FWO). Prof. Dr. W.H. De Smet is acknowledged for his help during sampling. Bart Van de Vijver is post-doctoral researcher at the FWO, Flanders. Prof. Dr. Stefan Van Dongen is thanked for his help with the logistic regression analysis.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sofie Vincke
    • 1
  • Niek Gremmen
    • 2
    • 3
  • Louis Beyens
    • 1
  • Bart Van de Vijver
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biology, Unit of Polar Ecology, Limnology and PaleobiologyUniversity of Antwerp (Campus Middelheim)AntwerpBelgium
  2. 2.Data Analyse EcologieDieverThe Netherlands
  3. 3.NIOO-CEMOYersekeThe Netherlands

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