The zooplankton community presents stochastic temporal fluctuation and heterogeneous spatial variation determined by the relationships among the organisms and environmental conditions. We predicted that the temporal and spatial zooplankton distribution is heterogeneous and discrete, respectively, and that the daily variation of most abundant species is related to environmental conditions, specifically the availability of resources. Zooplankton samples were collected daily at three sampling stations in a lateral arm of the Rosana Reservoir (SP/PR). The zooplankton did not present significant differences in abundance and evenness among sampling stations, but the temporal variation of these attributes was significant. Abiotic variables and algal resource availability have significantly explained the daily variation of the most abundant species (p<0.001), however, the species distribution makes inferences on biotic relationships between them. Thus, not only the food resource availability is influential on the abundance of principal zooplankton species, but rather a set of factors (abiotic variables and biotic relationships).
Temporal variation; rotifers; microcrustaceans; coexistence; competition