Browsing All Posts filed under »energy«

Herbivory is important in freshwater systems

March 27, 2017

0

Until the 1990s it was believed that, in the main, freshwater and marine plants were connected to aquatic food webs only indirectly, through the breakdown of decaying vegetation by decomposers. However, over the last two decades there’s been a growing realisation that the activities of aquatic herbivores in consuming plants and channeling the derived nutrients […]

How river transport affects dissolved organic matter

December 13, 2016

Comments Off on How river transport affects dissolved organic matter

In most rivers, the downstream transport of dissolved organic matter (DOM) makes large amounts of energy available to aquatic ecosystems. The River Continuum Concept (RCC) of Vannote et al. (1980) provided a useful framework for studying the influence of organic material from headwater streams on the structure and function of downstream ecosystems. The RCC hypothesized […]

How environmentally-damaging are run-of-river hydropower systems?

June 1, 2016

Comments Off on How environmentally-damaging are run-of-river hydropower systems?

Hydropower generation typically involves the creation of large dams for the storage and release of water, which can have serious adverse effects on riverine environments. However, growing pressures on governments to meet renewable energy targets have stimulated interest in small-scale hydropower systems, especially run-of-river schemes, which use the flow within a river channel and operate […]

Dietary data can be misleading

December 18, 2015

Comments Off on Dietary data can be misleading

Information on the structure and function of food webs is commonly collected by using gut content analysis to reconstruct the diets of a wide range of animal species. However, this approach can be very time consuming and expensive, and gives no information on how much ingested food is actually assimilated into the body. A supplementary […]

Metabolic costs drive seasonal habitat shifts

December 16, 2014

Comments Off on Metabolic costs drive seasonal habitat shifts

Most foraging studies have assumed that the metabolic costs of finding food are fixed, despite the fact that animals often switch seasonally between different types of habitat. For example, herbivorous waterfowl such as ducks, geese and swans often move seasonally between streams and adjacent pastures, and other species cycle between river and lake habitats. To […]