Influences of climate and nutrient enrichment on the multiple trophic levels of Turkish shallow lakes

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  • Meryem Beklioğlu, Middle East Technical University
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  • Tuba Bucak, Middle East Technical University, The Nature Conservation Center (DKM)
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  • Eti E. Levi
  • Şeyda Erdoğan, Middle East Technical University, Bozok University
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  • Arda Özen, Middle East Technical University, Cankiri Karatekin University
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  • Nur Filiz, Limnology Laboratory and EKOSAM, Middle East Technical University, Centre for Ecosystem Research and Implementation
  • ,
  • Gizem Bezirci, Middle East Technical University, British Embassy School
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  • Ayşe İdil Çakıroğlu, Middle East Technical University
  • ,
  • Nihan Tavşanoğlu, Middle East Technical University, Cankiri Karatekin University
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  • Didem Gökçe, Inonu University
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  • Nilsun Demir, Ankara University
  • ,
  • Müfit Özuluğ, Istanbul University
  • ,
  • Mustafa Duran, Pamukkale University
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  • Korhan Özkan, Limnology Laboratory and EKOSAM, Middle East Technical University
  • ,
  • Sandra Brucet, The University of Vic - Central University of Catalonia, ICREA
  • ,
  • Erik Jeppesen

Climate warming threatens the structure and function of shallow lakes, not least those in the Mediterranean climate. We used a space-for-time substitution approach to assess the response of trophic and community structures as well as the richness and evenness of multiple trophic levels to temperature, hydrological, and nutrient constraints. We selected 41 lakes covering wide climatic, hydrological, and nutrient gradients within a short distance for reducing the effect of biogeographical factors in the western Anatolian plateau of Turkey. Generalized linear model analyses revealed that temperature was overall the most important driving variable, followed by total nitrogen (TN) and salinity. The chlorophyll a:total phosphorus ratio, the cyanobacteria:total phytoplankton biovolume ratio, the fish:zooplankton biomass ratio, the proportion of small fish, and fish richness increased with increasing temperature, whereas macrophyte plant volume inhabited (PVI, %), richness, and evenness decreased. Grazing pressure, macrophyte coverage, piscivore biomass, phytoplankton richness, and evenness decreased significantly with both increasing TN and temperature. Temperature and nutrients also separated the northern highland lakes from other lakes in a non-metric multidimensional scaling analysis. Additionally, salinity reduced richness and evenness of phytoplankton and zooplankton. Our results indicate major changes in lake structure and functioning with warming and eutrophication, and highlight the need for strict control of nutrients and water use.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInland Waters
Volume10
Issue2
Pages (from-to)173-185
Number of pages13
ISSN2044-2041
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

    Research areas

  • drought, elevation, land use, richness, salinity, small fish

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