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Idesia (Arica)

versión On-line ISSN 0718-3429


CEPEDA-PIZARRO, Jorge; PIZARRO-ARAYA, Jaime  y  MORALES, María C.. Invertebrates inhabiting temporary ponds found in the Tambo-Puquíos wet pasture (Andes of north-central Chile), and the physicochemical characteristics of their habitat. Idesia [online]. 2015, vol.33, n.4, pp.55-64. ISSN 0718-3429.

The physical-chemical features of four temporary shallow ponds and their invertebrate fauna were studied during the summer months of three consecutive years. Invertebrate sampling was conducted by suction of pond water with a pump. From the physical-chemical point of view, the study ponds were heliotopic, mesotrophic and mesopoikilohaline microlimnotopes. Their thermal stratification is monomic-tic, with few degrees of difference in water temperature between surface and bottom. The chemical characteristics of pond water were in between those of freshwater and truly saline ponds. The study ponds exhibited high content of phosphate, Ca, and sulfate content, followed by fluoride, Fe, K, Mg, Cl, nitrate, and total suspended solids. They were low in bicarbonate and CN content. Apparently, the geochemical properties of the surrounding mountains play a role in the hydrochemistry of these water bodies. Total abundance per taxon was mostly low. We recorded five higher taxa. Cladocerans (e.g., Alona spp.), followed by dipterans (e.g., chironomid flies), and copepods (e.g., cyclopoids and harpactoids) were the dominant groups. Less abundant groups were amphipods (e.g., Hyperia spp.), and ostracods (e.g., Cyprididae). Some of the taxa reported in this work are recorded for first time in this type of habitat. Nevertheless, given the habitat characteristics, studies at finer taxonomic resolution are needed to search for site-specific genera or species. We obtained lower taxono-mic richness compared to lotic systems found in the area. This result may be due to differences in the dynamics of abiotic conditions observed between the two habitats. The variability in abundance among ponds was high for most of the recorded taxa. This variability may be a reflection of the general condition of the wet pasture we studied, suggesting that the ponds are important sources of the high biodiversity found in these landscape units. As the wet pastures of the area are networked, also contribute to biodiversity of the entire mountain system. From this, it is clear that conservation strategies of Andean wet pastures need to include these small landscape units.

Palabras clave : zooplankton; macroinvertebrates; temporary ponds; arid Andes; aquatic fauna; lentic habitats.

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