Russian Journal of Biological Invasions

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 349–357 | Cite as

Comparative Analysis of Predatory Behavior of Invasive Alien Dikerogammarus villosus (Sowinsky, 1894) and Native Gammarus varsoviensis Jazdzewski, 1975 Amphipods

  • T. P. LipinskayaEmail author
  • A. I. MakarenkoEmail author


Alien species of amphipods were registered in Belarus in the early 2000s. Over many years of observing the structure of the riverine macrozoobenthos community, a decrease in the frequency of occurrence of indigenous amphipod species in the southern part of Belarus was noted. In order to find an explanation of the current process, a laboratory experiment was conducted to study the predatory effect of the invasive alien (Dikerogammarus villosus (Sowinsky, 1894)) and native (Gammarus varsoviensis Jazdzewski, 1975) species of amphipods on some macrozoobenthos groups to compare the values of predation rates of amphipods and interspecific interaction of the two amphipod species. During the experiments on the food selectivity, it was found that invasive alien and native species of amphipods consumed the same number of macrozoobenthos groups. The maximum values of the predation rate of amphipods were determined when they consumed water louse and mayfly larvae; there were no statistically significant differences found. The average values of the predation rate of the invasive alien species were lower when it consumed adults of G. varsoviensis than young of G. varsoviensis. On the basis of the experimental data, it can be assumed that the direct predatory pressure of D. villosus or another similar alien species of amphipods (for example, D. haemobaphes (Eichwald, 1841)) is one of the main reasons for the disappearance of G. varsoviensis from the river sections where it was previously found.


Dikerogammarus villosus, Gammarus varsoviensis, native and invasive alien amphipods laboratory experiment amphipod feeding food selectivity predation 



We are grateful to Corresponding Member of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, Professor V.P. Semenchenko (head of the Laboratory of Hydrobiology, Scientific and Practical Center for Bioresources of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus) for valuable advice during the planning of the experiment and writing the article, as well as to the reviewer for valuable comments that allowed us to improve the text of the article.


This study was financially supported by the Belarusian Republican Foundation for Fundamental Research (project no. B17M-019 of April 18, 2017).


The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


All experimental protocols were carried out in accordance with EU Directive 86/609/EEC on the Protection of Animals Used for Experimental and Other Scientific Purposes and according to the rules approved by the Order of the Presidium of the USSR Academy of Sciences of April 2, 1980, no. 12000-496 and the order of the USSR Ministry of Higher Education of September 13, 1984, no. 22. All efforts were undertaken to use only the minimum number of animals necessary to obtain reliable scientific data.


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© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Scientific and Practical Center for Bioresources, National Academy of Sciences of BelarusMinskBelarus

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