Aquatic Sciences

, Volume 79, Issue 3, pp 507–514 | Cite as

Climate modulates the magnitude of the effects of flow regulation on leaf-litter decomposition

  • Aingeru Martínez
  • Aitor Larrañaga
  • Javier Pérez
  • Carmen Casado
  • José Jesús Casas
  • José Manuel González
  • Margarita Menéndez
  • Salvador Mollá
  • Jesús Pozo
Research Article

Abstract

The need of water for human use has led the impact on running waters of flow regulation to be of a global-scale. Although the effects of this impact have been widely investigated, efforts have been focused on large dams, so information about small reservoirs and their effects on ecosystem functioning is lacking. A recent collaborative project (IMPARIOS) addressed the effects of flow regulation by small impoundments on leaf-litter decomposition, a key function in low order streams which contributes greatly to the global carbon cycle. Flow regulation was found to affect ecosystem functioning reducing decomposition rate by altering shredders, but the magnitude of change varied among the different sub-climatic regions. The current project examined whether climatic variables modulate the effect of flow regulation on decomposition. For this, 19 bioclimatic variables were studied in relation to the leaf-litter decomposition rate and associated variables (sporulation rate and richness of aquatic hyphomycetes, and richness, density and biomass of total macroinvertebrates and shredders) in 17 streams impacted by regulation structures distributed in four sub-climatic regions within Spain. Overall, decomposition was slower below structures and climate influenced the magnitude of reduction. Effect sizes were negatively related to the seasonal changes in temperature and precipitation and to the general water deficit of the locations. In the future, the forecasted increase of seasonality in precipitation and temperature and the expected increase of number of dams to meet the needs of growing population may exacerbate the effects of flow regulation, altering nutrient recycling and the carbon cycle globally.

Keywords

Bioclimatic variables Ecosystem functioning Effect size Small reservoirs Stream 

Supplementary material

27_2016_513_MOESM1_ESM.docx (915 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 915 kb)

References

  1. Acuña V, Muñoz I, Giorgi A et al (2005) Drought and postdrought recovery cycles in an intermittent Mediterranean stream: structural and functional aspects. J North Am Benthol Soc 24:919–933CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. AEMET (2011) Atlas climático ibérico/Iberian climate atlas. Closas Orcoyen SL, MadridGoogle Scholar
  3. Battin TJ, Luyssaert S, Kaplan LA et al (2009) The boundless carbon cycle. Nat Geosci 2:598–600CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bhowmik AK, Schäfer RB (2015) Large scale relationship between aquatic insect traits and climate. PLoS One 10:e0130025CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  5. Boulton AJ (2003) Parallels and contrasts in the effects of drought on stream macroinvertebrate assemblages. Freshw Biol 48:1173–1185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Camargo JA, Alonso A, la Puente M (2005) Eutrophication downstream from small reservoirs in mountain rivers of Central Spain. Water Res 39:3376–3384CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Cheever BM, Kratzer EB, Webster JR (2012) Immobilization and mineralization of N and P by heterotrophic microbes during leaf decomposition. Freshw Sci 31:133–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Christensen OB, Christensen JH (2004) Intensification of extreme European summer precipitation in a warmer climate. Glob Planet Change 44:107–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Corti R, Datry T, Drummond L, Larned ST (2011) Natural variation in immersion and emersion affects breakdown and invertebrate colonization of leaf litter in a temporary river. Aquat Sci 73:537–550CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Cummings CR, Mathews TG, Lester RE (2013) Novel methods for managing freshwater refuges against climate change in southern Australia. Supporting document 1: evaluating the utility of cold-water releases (“shandying”) for enhancing the resilience of riverine species. National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility, Gold CoastGoogle Scholar
  11. Dang CK, Gessner MO, Chauvet E (2007) Influence of conidial traits and leaf structure on attachment success of aquatic hyphomycetes on leaf litter. Mycologia 99:24–32CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Datry T, Corti R, Claret C, Philippe M (2011) Flow intermittence controls leaf litter breakdown in a French temporary alluvial river: the “drying memory”. Aquat Sci 73:471–483CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Datry T, Larned ST, Fritz KM et al (2014) Broad-scale patterns of invertebrate richness and community composition in temporary rivers: effects of flow intermittence. Ecography 37:94–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. García de Jalón D (2003) The Spanish experience in determining minimum flow regimes in regulated streams. Can Water Resour J 28:185–198CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Giorgi F (2006) Climate change hot-spots. Geophys Res Lett 33:L08707CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Giorgi F, Lionello P (2008) Climate change projections for the Mediterranean region. Glob Planet Change 63:90–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. González JM, Mollá S, Roblas N et al (2013) Small dams decrease leaf litter breakdown rates in Mediterranean mountain streams. Hydrobiologia 712:117–128CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hart DD, Johnson TE, Bushaw-Newton KL et al (2002) Dam removal: challenges and opportunities for ecological research and river restoration. Bioscience 52:669–682CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Heino J, Virkkala R, Toivonen H (2009) Climate change and freshwater biodiversity: detected patterns, future trends and adaptations in northern regions. Biol Rev 84:39–54CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Hershkovitz Y, Gasith A (2013) Resistance, resilience, and community dynamics in mediterranean-climate streams. Hydrobiologia 719:59–75CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hijmans RJ, Cameron SE, Parra JL et al (2005) Very high resolution interpolated climate surfaces for global land areas. Int J Climatol 25:1965–1978CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Huang S, Huang Q, Chang J, Leng G (2016) Linkages between hydrological drought, climate indices and human activities: a case study in the Columbia River basin. Int J Climatol 36:280–290CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kominoski JS, Rosemond AD (2012) Conservation from the bottom up: forecasting effects of global change on dynamics of organic matter and management needs for river networks. Freshw Sci 31:51–68CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Lake PS (2003) Ecological effects of perturbation by drought in flowing waters. Freshw Biol 48:1161–1172CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Langhans SD, Tockner K (2006) The role of timing, duration, and frequency of inundation in controlling leaf litter decomposition in a river-floodplain ecosystem (Tagliamento, northeastern Italy). Oecologia 147:501–509CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Larned ST, Datry T, Robinson CT (2007) Invertebrate and microbial responses to inundation in an ephemeral river reach in New Zealand: effects of preceding dry periods. Aquat Sci 69:554–567CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Lecerf A, Chauvet E (2008) Intraspecific variability in leaf traits strongly affects alder leaf decomposition in a stream. Basic Appl Ecol 9:598–605CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Li Z, Huang G, Han J et al (2015) Development of a stepwise-clustered hydrological inference model. J Hydrol Eng 20:4015008CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Lyons JK, Pucherelli MJ, Clark RC (1992) Sediment transport and channel characteristics of a sand-bed portion of the green river below flaming gorge dam, Utah, USA. Regul Rivers Res Manag 7:219–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Maamri A, Chergui H, Pattee E (1997) Leaf litter processing in a temporary northeastern Moroccan river. Arch für Hydrobiol 140:513–531CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Magilligan FJ, Haynie HJ, Nislow KH (2008) Channel adjustments to dams in the Connecticut River basin: implications for forested mesic watersheds. Ann Assoc Am Geogr 98:267–284CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Martínez A, Pérez J, Molinero J et al (2015) Effects of flow scarcity on leaf-litter processing under oceanic climate conditions in calcareous streams. Sci Total Environ 503:251–257CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Mbaka JG, Wanjiru Mwaniki M (2015) A global review of the downstream effects of small impoundments on stream habitat conditions and macroinvertebrates. Environ Rev 23:257–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Mendoza-Lera C, Larrañaga A, Pérez J et al (2012) Headwater reservoirs weaken terrestrial-aquatic linkage by slowing leaf-litter processing in downstream regulated reaches. River Res Appl 28:13–22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Menéndez M, Descals E, Riera T, Moya O (2012) Effect of small reservoirs on leaf litter decomposition in Mediterranean headwater streams. Hydrobiologia 691:135–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Merenlender AM, Matella MK (2013) Maintaining and restoring hydrologic habitat connectivity in mediterranean streams: an integrated modeling framework. Hydrobiologia 719:509–525CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Navarro-Llácer C, Baeza D, de las Heras J (2010) Assessment of regulated rivers with indices based on macroinvertebrates, fish and riparian forest in the southeast of Spain. Ecol Indic 10:935–942CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Nilsson C, Reidy CA, Dynesius M, Revenga C (2005) Fragmentation and flow regulation of the world’s large river systems. Science 308:405–408CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Pajunen V, Luoto M, Soininen J (2016) Climate is an important driver for stream diatom distributions. Glob Ecol Biogeogr 25:198–206CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Papadaki C, Soulis K, Muñoz-Mas R et al (2016) Potential impacts of climate change on flow regime and fish habitat in mountain rivers of the south-western Balkans. Sci Total Environ 540:418–428CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  41. Perkins DM, Reiss J, Yvon-Durocher G, Woodward G (2010) Global change and food webs in running waters. Hydrobiologia 657:181–198CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Petersen RC, Cummins KW (1974) Leaf processing in a woodland stream. Freshw Biol 4:343–368CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Pinheiro JC, Bates DM (2000) Mixed-effects models in S and S-PLUS, Statistics and Computing Series. Springer, New YorkCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Pinna M, Basset A (2004) Summer drought disturbance on plant detritus decomposition processes in three River Tirso (Sardinia, Italy) sub-basins. Hydrobiologia 522:311–319CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Poff NL, Hart DD (2002) How dams vary and why it matters for the emerging science of dam removal. Bioscience 52:659–668CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Poff NL, Olden JD, Merritt DM, Pepin DM (2007) Homogenization of regional river dynamics by dams and global biodiversity implications. Proc Natl Acad Sci 104:5732–5737CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  47. R Development Core Team (2010) R: a language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, ViennaGoogle Scholar
  48. Rheinheimer DE, Yarnell SM, Viers JH (2013) Hydropower costs of environmental flows and climate warming in California’s Upper Yuba River Watershed. River Res Appl 29:1291–1305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Rosenberg DM, McCully P, Pringle CM (2000) Global-scale environmental effects of hydrological alterations: introduction. Bioscience 50:746–751CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Schaldach R, Koch J, der Beek TA et al (2012) Current and future irrigation water requirements in pan-Europe: an integrated analysis of socio-economic and climate scenarios. Glob Planet Change 94:33–45CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Schlief J, Mutz M (2011) Leaf decay processes during and after a supra-seasonal hydrological drought in a temperate lowland stream. Int Rev Hydrobiol 96:633–655CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Solomon S, Qin D, Manning M, et al (2007) IPCC, 2007: summary for policymakers, climate change 2007: the physical science basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  53. WWF Spain (2009) Liberando ríos. Propuesta de WWF para el desmantelamiento de presas en España. Artes Gráficas Palermo SL, MadridGoogle Scholar
  54. Van Loon AF, Tijdeman E, Wanders N et al (2014) How climate seasonality modifies drought duration and deficit. J Geophys Res Atmos 119:4640–4656CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Vörösmarty CJ, McIntyre PB, Gessner MO et al (2010) Global threats to human water security and river biodiversity. Nature 467:555–561CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  56. Wenger SJ, Isaak DJ, Luce CH et al (2011) Flow regime, temperature, and biotic interactions drive differential declines of trout species under climate change. Proc Natl Acad Sci 108:14175–14180CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  57. Williams DD, Hynes HB (1977) The ecology of temporary streams II. General remarks on temporary streams. Int Rev Gesamten Hydrobiol Hydrogr 62:53–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. World Commission on Dams (2000) Dams and development: a new framework for decision-making: the report of the World Commission on Dams. Earthscan Publications Ltd, London, SterlingGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aingeru Martínez
    • 1
  • Aitor Larrañaga
    • 1
  • Javier Pérez
    • 1
  • Carmen Casado
    • 2
  • José Jesús Casas
    • 3
  • José Manuel González
    • 4
  • Margarita Menéndez
    • 5
  • Salvador Mollá
    • 2
  • Jesús Pozo
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Stream Ecology, Department of Plant Biology and EcologyUniversity of the Basque CountryBilbaoSpain
  2. 2.Department of Ecology, Faculty of SciencesAutonomous University of MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Department of Biology and GeologyUniversity of Almería-ceiA3AlmeríaSpain
  4. 4.Department of Biology and GeologyRey Juan Carlos UniversityMóstolesSpain
  5. 5.Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental SciencesUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations