Skip to main content

Experimental study of trophic cascade effect of silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrixon) in a subtropical lake, Lake Donghu: on plankton community and underlying mechanisms of changes of crustacean community

Abstract

An enclosure experiment was carried out to test trophic cascade effect of filter-feeding fish on the ecosystem: growth of crustacean zooplankton, and possible mechanism of changes of crustacean community structure. Four fish biomass levels were set as follows: 0, 116, 176 and 316 g m-2, and lake water (containing ca. 190 g m-2 of filter-feeding fishes) was comparatively monitored. Nutrient levels were high in all treatments during the experiment. Lowest algal biomass were measured in fishless treatment. Algal biomass decreased during days 21–56 as a function of fish biomass in treatments of low (LF), medium (MF) and high (HF) fish biomass. Crustaceans biomass decreased with increasing fish biomass. Small-bodied cladocerans, Moina micrura, Diaphanosoma brachyurum and Scapholeberis kingii survived when fish biomass was high whilst, large-bodied cladocerans Daphnia spp. and the cyclopoids Theromcyclops taihokuensis, T. brevifuratus, Mescyclops notius and Cyclops vicinus were abundant only in NF enclosures. Evasive calanoid Sinodiaptomus sarsi was significantly enhanced in LF, but decreased significantly with further increase of fish biomass. Demographic data indicated that M. micrura was well developed in all treatments. Our study indicates that algal biomass might be controlled by silver carp biomass in eutrophic environment. Changes of crustacean community are probably affected by the age of the first generation of species. Species with short generation time were dominant and species with long generation time survived less with high fish biomass. Evasive calanoids hardly developed in treatments with high fish biomass because of the (bottle neck) effect of nauplii. Species abundance were positively related to fish predation avoidance. Other than direct predation, zooplankton might also be suppressed by filter-feeding fish via competition.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  • American Public Health Association, 1985. The Standard Method for the Examination of Water and Wastewater (16th edn). Port City Press, Maryland.

    Google Scholar 

  • Antalfi, A. & T. Tolg, 1971. Graskarpfen. Pflanzenfressende Fische. Donau-Verlag, Günzburg: 207 pp.

    Google Scholar 

  • Burke, J. S., D. R. Bayne & H. Rea, 1986. Impact of silver and bighead carps on plankton communities of channel catfish pond. Aquaculture 55: 59–68.

    Google Scholar 

  • Chen, S. L., 1990. The role of fish in the cycling of substance in the lake. In: Liu, J. K. (ed.), Ecological Studies of Lake Donghu. Science Press, Beijing, Vol. 1: 324–330 (in Chinese).

    Google Scholar 

  • Chen, S., X. Liu & L. Hua., 1991. The role of silver carp and bighead in the cycling of nitrogen and phosphorus in the East Lake ecosystem. Acta hydrobiol. Sinica 15 (1): 8–26 (in Chinese with English abstract).

    Google Scholar 

  • Chen, X., 1985. A preliminary study on biomass and production of copepoda in Lake Donghu, Wuhan. Acta hydrobiol. Sinica 9 (2): 144–158 (in Chinese with English abstract)

    Google Scholar 

  • Chiang, S. C. & N. S. Du, 1979. Fauan Sinica, Crustacea, Freshwater Cladocera. Science Press, Academia Sinica, Beijing (in Chinese).

    Google Scholar 

  • Confer, J. L. & P. I. Blades, 1975. Omnivorous zooplankton and planktivorous fish. Limnol. Oceanogr. 20: 571–579.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cremmer, M. C. & R. O. Smitherman, 1980. Food habits and growth of silver bighead carp in cages and ponds. Aquaculture 20: 57–64.

    Google Scholar 

  • Drenner, R. W. & S. R. McComas, 1980. The role of zooplankter escape ability in the selective feeding and impact of planktivorous fish. In: Kerfoot, W. C. (ed.), Evolution and Ecology of Zooplankton Communities. The Univ. Press of New England, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA: 587–593.

    Google Scholar 

  • Drenner, R. W., F. de Noyelles Jr & D. Kettle, 1982. Selective impact of filter-feeding gizzard shad on zooplankton community structure. Limnol. Oceanogr. 27: 965–968.

    Google Scholar 

  • Drenner, R.W., J. R. Mummert, F. de Noyelles Jr. & D. Kettle, 1984. Selective particle ingestion by a filter-feeding fish and its impact on phytoplankton community structure. Limnol. Oceanogr. 29(5): 941–948.

    Google Scholar 

  • Drenner, R.W., J. R. Strickler & W. J. O'Brien, 1978. Capture probability. The role of zooplankter escape in the selective feeding of planktivorous fish. J. Fish. Res. Bd Can. 34: 1370–1373.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fukushima, M., N. Takamura, L. Sun, M. Nakagawa, K. Matsushige & P. Xie, 1999. Changes in the plankton community following introduction of filter-feeding planktivorous fish. Freshwat. Biol. 42: 719–735.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gophen, M., 1990. Biomanipulation: retrospective and future development. Hydrobiologia 200/201: 1–11.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gophen, M., R. W. Drenner & G. G. Vinyard, 1983. Cichlid stocking and the decline of the Galilee Saint Peter's fish (Sarotherodon Galilaeus) in Lake Kinneret, Israel. Can. J. Fish. aquat. Sci. 40(7): 983–986.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hampl, A., J. Jirásek & D. Sirotek, 1983. Growth morphology of the filtering apparatus of silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix). KK. Microscopic anatomy. Aquaculture 31: 153–158.

    Google Scholar 

  • Herodek, S., Iátrai, J. Oláh & L. Vörös, 1989. Feeding experiments with silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Val.) fry. Aquaculture 83: 331–344.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hillbricht-Ilkowska, A. & T. Weglenska, 1973. Experimentally increased fish stock in the pond type LakeWarniak. VII. Numbers, biomass and production of zooplankton. Ekol. pol. 21: 533–552.

    Google Scholar 

  • Huang, X. F., 1984. Impacts of temperature on development and growth of Daphnia hyalina and Daphnia carinata spp. Acta hydrobiol. Sinica 8 (2): 207–224.

    Google Scholar 

  • Huang, X. F., 1985. Studies on the biology of three freshwater cladoceran species. Ocean. Limnol. Sinica Vol (16): 189–195.

    Google Scholar 

  • Huang, X. F., 1986. Development and growth of Diaphanosoma brachyurum Lieven (1984). Acta hydrobiol Sinica 10 (1): 52–59.

    Google Scholar 

  • Huang, X. F. & Hu, C. Y., 1986. Regression equations of the body weight to body length for common freshwater species of Cladoceraa. In: Chinese Crustacean Society (ed.), Transaction of the Chinese Crustacean Society. No. 1. Science Press, Beijing (in Chinese with English abstract).

    Google Scholar 

  • Itawa, K., 1977. Morphological and physiological studies on the phytoplankton feeders of cyprinid. II. Development changes of assimilation efficiency in terms of carbon, estimated by using 14C-lableed green algae in Carassius auratus cuvieri, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix and C. auratus grandoculis. Jap. J. Limnol. 38: 19–32.

    Google Scholar 

  • Januszko, M., 1974. The effect of three species of phytophagous fish on algae development. Pol. Arch. Hydrobiol. 21: 431–454.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kajak, Z., J. Rybak & I. Spodniewska, 1975. Influence of planktivorous fish, Hypophthalmichthys mo9litris, on the plankton and the benthos of eutrophic lake. Pol. Arch. Hydrobiol. 22: 301–310.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kajke Z., I. Spodniewska & R. J. Wisniewski, 1977. Studies on food selectivity of silver carp, Hypophthalmichthys militrix (Vol.). Ekol. pol. 25: 227–239.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lazzaro, X., 1987. A review of planktivorous fishes: their evolution, feeding behavirous, and impacts. Hydrobiologia 145: 97–167.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lazzaro, X., R. W. Drenner & J. D. Smith, 1992. Planktivores and plankton dynamics: effects of fish biomass and planktivore type. Can. J. Fish. aquat. Sci. 49: 1466–1473.

    Google Scholar 

  • Murugan, N. & K. G. Sivaramakrishnan, 1973. The biology of Simocephalus acutirostratus King (Cladocera: Daphnidae). Freshwat. Biol. 3 (1): 77–87.

    Google Scholar 

  • Murugan, N., 1975. Egg production, development and growth in Moina micrura Kurz (Cladocera: Moinidae). Freshwat. Biol. 5(2): 245–250.

    Google Scholar 

  • Nilssen, J. P., 1984. Tropical lakes-functional ecology and future development: The need for a process-orientated approach. Hydrobiologia 113: 231–242.

    Google Scholar 

  • Opuszynski, K, 1980. The role of fishery management in counteracting eutrophication processes. In: Barica, J. & L. R. Mur (eds), SIL Workshop on Hypertrophic Ecosystems, Vaxjo, Sweden, Sept. 10–14, 1979, Developments in Hydrobiology 2: 105–116.

  • Opuszynski, K., 1978. The influence of the silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Val.) on eutrophication of the environment of carp ponds. Roczniki Nauk Rolniczych. 99: 127–151.

    Google Scholar 

  • Opuszynski, K., 1979. Silver carp, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix (Val.), in carp ponds III. Influence on ecosystem. Ekol. pol. 27: 117–133.

    Google Scholar 

  • Paloheimo, J. E., 1974. Calculation of instantaneous birth rate. Limnol. Oceanogr. 19: 692–694.

    Google Scholar 

  • Romanovsky, Y. E., 1985. Food limitation and life-history strategies in cladoceran crustaceans. Arch. Hydrobiol. Beih. Ergebn. Limnol. 21: 363–372.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ruttner-Kolisko, F., 1977. Suggestions for biomass-calculation of plankton rotifers. Arch. Hydriobiol. Beih. Ergebn. Limnol. 8: 71–76.

    Google Scholar 

  • Shei, P, W. Lin, S. Wang & J. Liu, 1993. Plankton and seston structure in a shallow, eutrophic subtropic Chinese lake. Arch. Hydrobiol. 129: 199–220.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sheng, J. R. (ed.), 1979. Fauna Sinica, Crustacea, Freshwater Copepoda. Science Press, Academia Sinica, Beijing (in Chinese).

    Google Scholar 

  • Smith, D. W., 1989. The feeding selectivity of silver carp. Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Val., J. Fish. Biol. 34: 819–828.

    Google Scholar 

  • Spataru, P. & M. Gophen, 1985. Feeding behaviour of silver carp Hypophthalmichthys molitrix (Val.) and its impact on the food web in Lake Kinneret, Israel. Hydrobiologia 120: 53–61.

    Google Scholar 

  • Starling, F. L. R. M. & A. J. A. Rocha, 1990. Experimental study of the impacts of planktivorous fishes on plankton community and eutrophication of tropical Brazilian reservoir. Hydrobiologia 200/201: 581–591.

    Google Scholar 

  • Starling, F. L. R. M., 1993. Control of eutrophication by silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix) in the tropical Paranoá Reservoir (Brasília, Brazil): a mesocosm experiment. Hydrobiologia 257: 143–152.

    Google Scholar 

  • Szlauer, L., 1965. The refuge ability of plankton animals before plankton eating animals. Pol. Arch. Hydrobiol. 13 (26): 89–95.

    Google Scholar 

  • Vinyard, G. L., R. W. Drenner & D. A. Hanzel, 1982. Feeding success of hatchery-reared Kokanee salmon when presented with zooplankton prey. Prog. Fish. Cult. 44: 37–39.

    Google Scholar 

  • Xie, P., 1994. Alteration in plankton community structure accompanying with a remarkable increase in production of two planktivorous fishes, silver and bighead carps, in a shallow, hypereutrophic Chinese Lake. In: Liu, J. K. (ed.), Annual Report of 31 State Key Laboratory for Freshwater Ecology and Biotechnology of China (FEBL) for 1993. Internationl Academic Publishers, Beijing, China: 9–34.

    Google Scholar 

  • Xie, P., 1996: experimental studies on the role of planktivorous fishes in the elimination of Microsystis blooms from Donghu Lake using enclsoure method. Chin. J. Oceanol. Limnol. 14: 193–204.

    Google Scholar 

  • Xie, P., 1997. Structure and elemental composition of dry seston in East Lake, Wuhan. Acta Hydrobiol. Sinica 20 (3): 197–205 (in Chinese with English abstract).

    Google Scholar 

  • Yang, Y. F., 1997. Ecological studies on crustacean zooplankton in Lake Donghu, Wuhan and in Loch Leven, Scotland. Ph.D. Thesis, Institute of Hydrobiology, CAS.

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Lu, M., Xie, P., Tang, H. et al. Experimental study of trophic cascade effect of silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrixon) in a subtropical lake, Lake Donghu: on plankton community and underlying mechanisms of changes of crustacean community. Hydrobiologia 487, 19–31 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1022940716736

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1022940716736

  • trophic cascade effect
  • silver carp
  • crustacean zooplankton
  • algal biomass
  • age of first generation