Wynand Malherbe

Abstracts

1 Macroinvertebrate Variation of Endorheic Depression Wetlands within North West and Mpumalanga Provinces, South Africa

Authors: Lee-Ann Foster, Wynand Malherbe, Martin Ferriera, Johan Van Vuren

Abstract:

Aquatic macroinvertebrates are rarely used in wetland assessments due to their variability. However, in terms of biodiversity, these invertebrates form an important component of wetlands. The objective of this study was to compare the spatial and temporal variation of macroinvertebrate assemblages within endorheic depressions in Mpumalanga and North West Provinces of South Africa. Sampling was conducted over a period of two seasons during 2012 and 2013 at all sampling points to account for a wet and dry season. The identification of macroinvertebrate community samples resulted in 24 taxa for both provinces. Results showed similarities in the structure of communities in perennial endorheic depressions in both provinces with the exception of one or two species. Macroinvertebrates sampled in Mpumalanga depressions (locally called pans) were similar to those reported in previous studies completed in the area and most of the macroinvertebrates sampled in Mpumalanga and the North West are known to be commonly found in temporary habitats. The knowledge acquired can now be utilised to enhance the available literature on these systems. Long-term studies have to be implemented to better understand the ecological functioning of the pans in the North West Province.

Keywords: Aquatic, PANS, spatial variation, macroinvertebrate assemblages

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