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Brazilian Journal of Biology

versión impresa ISSN 1519-6984


BRANDAO, LPM; PUJONI, DGF  y  MAIA-BARBOSA, PM. Seasonal dynamics of Daphnia laevisBirge, 1878 ephippia in a tropical lake with a description of a new methodology for in situ evaluation. Braz. J. Biol. [online]. 2014, vol.74, n.3, pp.642-648. ISSN 1519-6984.

The effect of dormancy in zooplankton populations is still unknown, largely because of the lack of methods to estimate hatching and production of the dormant stages. This study aimed to compare the production and hatching rates of ephippia of Daphnia laevis between thermal stratification and mixing periods in Jacaré Lake (Middle Rio Doce, Minas Gerais, Brazil). For this, we collected ephippia on the sediment with core sampler and we created a device called the “Ephippial Collector”. There was a significant difference in ephippia hatching in situ between stratification and mixing periods (Pearson's Chi-squared test p <0.001), being higher in the second one. Significant differences in the hatching rates between periods was observed in the laboratory only for ephippia collected with Ephippial Collectors (Pearson's Chi-squared test p <0.001), being higher during the mixing period (∼8%). The core sample allows the collection of a certain fraction of the sediment that may contain a mixture of ephippia produced in different periods, i.e., may contain old and not viable ephippia, which masks the hatching rate. Thus, seasonality in hatching rates of ephippia was reported only by Ephippial Collectors. The higher hatching rate observed during the mixing period in the lake suggests that individuals hatched from ephippia may contribute to the increase in the population of D. laevis in the water column at this time.

Palabras clave : ephippium; ephippial collector; in situ; resting eggs; zooplankton.

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