, Volume 150, Issue 1, pp 33–43 | Cite as

Macroinvertebrate assemblages in Pennsylvania (U.S.A.) springs

  • Douglas S. Glazier
  • James L. Gooch


Five distinct macroinvertebrate assemblages were identified using cluster analysis of the rank-order abundances of 13 orders in 15 freshwater springs of central Pennsylvania, U.S.A. A principal components analysis of 20 environmental factors indicated that an insect-dominated assemblage occurred in low pH, softwater sandstone springs and an amphipod-dominated assemblage was associated with medium to hardwater springs with a silt to gravel substratum. Three other assemblages were found in hardwater limestone springs: the peracaridan-hydrobiid assemblage was characterized by dense macrophyte beds and a silt to cobble substratum, the peracaridan-triclad-glossosomatid assemblage by a rubbly, gravel-cobble substratum and relatively high discharge, and the peracaridan-hydrobiid-oligochaete assemblage by a silty substratum and dense mats of green algae.

Most of the common macroinvertebrate species were associated with specific physical, chemical, and (or) vegetational factors, but abundance associations between species pairs were generally lacking. We infer that assemblages are primarily determined by the match between the environmental mosaic of individual springs and the ecological requirements of the available species, rather than by strong interspecific interactions.

Species-environment associations were assessed in an additional study of five closely neighboring springs in which some environmental variables of the wider study were nearly constant.


assemblages environmental associations macroinvertebrates Pennsylvania springs 


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Copyright information

© Dr W. Junk Publishers 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas S. Glazier
    • 1
  • James L. Gooch
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyJuniata CollegeHuntingtonUSA

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