About FRN

December 17, 2020

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Freshwater Research News (FRN) is a free newsletter designed to increase understanding of aquatic issues by bringing recently-published research findings to a general audience. FRN draws on articles from over 60 scientific journals to produce brief, easy-to read summaries of the background and significance of freshwater research projects from around the world. The subject range is […]

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Reservoirs as biodiversity hotspots

December 17, 2020

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Although lakes and reservoirs are both inland water bodies, lakes are usually ancient ecosystems formed by geomorphological processes while reservoirs are relatively young environments constructed to meet human needs.  Understanding how these factors affect biological communities is important in the conservation of freshwater biodiversity.  In theory, diversity should be greater in lake habitats because they […]

Putting salinisation into reverse

December 17, 2020

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Salinisation is a major threat to water supplies and aquatic biodiversity, and one of its main causes is deforestation.  For example, in the Denmark River catchment of Western Australia, forest clearing began in the 1870s and rapidly expanded from the 1940s with the spread of heavy machinery.  As a result, deep-rooted native trees with a […]

Linking population density to distribution

December 17, 2020

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The relationship between the abundance of a species and its occurrence across sites is important because it links ecological processes at different spatial scales.  For many types of animals and plants the relationship has been found to be positive, so that species that are highly abundant at a site also tend to occupy many sites.  […]

Posted in: feeding, fish, population

When bold individuals stay put

December 17, 2020

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Although ecological studies often assume that all members of an animal population have similar responses to environmental conditions, it’s now clear that members of the same species can display consistent behavioural differences, and that such personality traits are often correlated.  For example, boldness, aggression and sociability have been linked to dispersal behaviour, with bolder, more […]

Channel restoration takes time

December 16, 2020

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Channel reconfiguration is a common stream restoration technique that aims to create a stable basis for ecological functioning, but it’s expensive and its effectiveness has often been questioned.  However, channel reconfiguration assessments are typically based on the results of monitoring for up to 5-7 years post-restoration, which may be too short a period to capture […]

Crustaceans control the flow of groundwater

December 16, 2020

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Aquifers are an essential source of water for human needs and groundwater is the world’s most extracted raw material.   The capacity of aquifers to store and transport water critically depends on their hydraulic properties, which also have a strong influence on communities of underground lifeforms, including microbes, micro- and macro-invertebrates and fish.  Evidence is now […]

Water diplomacy

December 16, 2020

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A recent special issue of the Journal of Hydrology was devoted to the theme of water diplomacy, which can be defined as cooperative interactions that allow multiple stakeholders to find reasonable, sustainable and peaceful solutions for the joint management of shared freshwater resources.  The pressing need for effective water diplomacy is underscored by these statistics: […]

Ecosystem impacts of invasive carp

December 16, 2020

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The common carp (Cyprinus carpio) is one of the world’s most widespread invasive fish species and has a reputation for causing ecological damage.  It’s thought that the excretion of nutrients by dense populations of carp stimulates algal growth, which increases turbidity, and that the feeding and spawning activities of carp further increase turbidity by bringing […]

Are there more species in permanent waters?

December 16, 2020

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How important is the influence of permanent water on the biodiversity of lakes, ponds and wetlands? Because many freshwater habitats dry out on a regular basis, to survive under such conditions organisms need to be able to exist as terrestrial adults or dormant stages, or to migrate to more permanent water bodies.  Despite these challenges, […]