Revista Brasileira de Biologia
Print version ISSN 0034-7108
BAPTISTA, D. F.; BUSS, D. F.; DORVILLE, L. F. M. and NESSIMIAN, J. L.. Diversity and habitat preference of aquatic insects along the longitudinal gradient of the Macaé River basin, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Rev. Bras. Biol. [online]. 2001, vol.61, n.2, pp. 249-258. ISSN 0034-7108. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-71082001000200007.
Diversity and habitat preference of macroinvertebrates were studied in Macaé River basin, Rio de Janeiro State, Brazil, along its longitudinal gradient. We selected stream reaches corresponding to 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th orders. A Surber sampler was used to collect four macroinvertebrates samples of each substrate (sand, litter in pool areas, stones, and litter in riffle areas) during the three sampling periods, defined based on the rain regime: April (end of the rainy season), July (dry season), and October (beginning of the rainy season). We identified 46,431 specimens corresponding to 117 taxa. Analysis of diversity numbers (both for family or genus level) indicated that all insect taxonomic orders had higher numbers on 2nd order stream reach, except for Ephemeroptera, on 4th order. However when considering morph-species taxonomic level, the higher diversity number occurred on 4th order stream. The highest richness and diversity numbers were found at the dry season. Considering habitat preference, both litter in pool areas and litter in riffle areas had the highest faunal richness.
Keywords : diversity; aquatic insects; longitudinal gradient; tropical river; Brazil.