The dynamics of fish populations in the Palancar stream, a small tributary of the river Guadalquivir, Spain
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SourceActa Oecologica 22 (2001) 9−20
The relationship between flooding and changes in the size distribution of fish populations in the Palancar stream confirms observations in other rivers. On average, density decreased by 36.2 % and biomass increased by 14.5 %, passing from a period of severe drought to one of heavier than normal rains. Precipitation is the most important of the many factors affecting the populations of the Palancar stream; the most evident changes all occurred after the drought. During the drought period, the marked seasonal fluctuation in flow was the most important factor regulating the population dynamics. Fish density and biomass varied in proportion to the water volume. During the rainy period, the studied section of the river was found to be an important reproduction and nursery area, with juveniles and individuals of reproduction age dominating. The presence of Micropterus salmoides, an introduced piscivorous species, is another factor affecting the population dynamics in the Palancar stream. The observed absence of age 0+ individuals of the dominant populations is considered a direct effect of predation.