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Brazilian Journal of Biology

versión impresa ISSN 1519-6984


TONETTO, AF.; PERES, CK.  y  BRANCO, CCZ.. A new method to quantify macroalgae and a practical sampler for experimentation in lotic habitats. Braz. J. Biol. [online]. 2012, vol.72, n.4, pp.853-857. ISSN 1519-6984.

Experimental studies in rivers and streams are extremely difficult to run due to the fact that the conditions of these environments are very complex and provide a high level of heterogeneity, which hinders the precise control and standardization of variables. In this study, we present a practical sampler that was designed to make it easier to conduct research projects involving benthic communities of lotic environments, as well as a new nondestructive technique for quantification of the macroalgal communities typically found in these habitats. The sampler consists of an acrylic square tube in which water flows normally inside. This structure carries a removable glass plaque with a known area and can simulate various ecological situations by changing both biotic and abiotic conditions. Thus, it can mitigate the differences between environmental characteristics where each sampler is exposed. The new technique involves capturing digital images that can monitor a unique macroalgal community in development throughout time and a more precise quantification when compared with other techniques that are widely applied. The sampler is easy to build and the images simple to quantify, allowing the detection of spatial and temporal variations in richness and abundance of investigated communities.

Palabras clave : artificial substrate; sampling method; stream macroalgae; limnology.

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