Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

Correlation of fish assemblages with habitat and environmental variables in a headwater stream section of Lijiang River, China

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


  • Jian Huang, Guilin University of Technology, Guangxi Key Laboratory of Environmental Pollution Control Theory and Technology
  • ,
  • Liangliang Huang, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Guilin University of Technology, Collaborative Innovation Center for Water Pollution Control and Water Safety in Karst Area
  • ,
  • Zhiqiang Wu, Guilin University of Technology
  • ,
  • Yuanmin Mo, Guilin University of Technology
  • ,
  • Qi Zou, Guilin University of Technology
  • ,
  • Naicheng Wu, Department of Health and Environmental Sciences, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University
  • ,
  • Zhongbing Chen, Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague, Department of Ecology

In order to determine the relationship between stream habitat and fish assemblages, an investigation of fish assemblages and environmental variables in different habitat types was carried out in the headwater stream section of Lijiang River, China, from September to November 2016. In total, 2968 individuals belonging to 4 orders, 11 families, 26 genera and 37 species were collected. Cypriniformes emerged as the most species-rich order, accounting for 62.2% of the total species. The dominant species were Pseudogastromyzon fangi, Zacco platypus, Acrossocheilus parallens and Erromyzon sinensis. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) and permutational multivariate analysis of variance (PERMANOVA) revealed that fish assemblages were not affected by habitat type. However, one-way ANOVA results showed that species richness, fish abundance, fish density and Shannon index were significantly affected by habitat type. Redundancy analysis (RDA) further revealed that altitude, velocity, conductivity, turbidity, depth and wetted width had significant relationships within fish assemblages, whereas water temperature, dissolved oxygen and substrate size were less important in this study, and different fish species preferred different environmental variables potentially due to differences in species' ecological requirements. Although habitat type did not affect overall fish assemblages, habitat heterogeneity played an important role in fish diversity. Hence, maintaining diverse stream habitats or restoring them are of key importance for fish diversity conservation and sustainability management of rivers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1135
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • Environmental variables, Fish assemblages, Habitat, Headwater stream, Lijiang River

See relations at Aarhus University Citationformats

ID: 164766923