Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Open Life Sciences

formerly Central European Journal of Biology

Editor-in-Chief: Ratajczak, Mariusz

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 0.504
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.583

CiteScore 2018: 0.63

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.266
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.311

ICV 2017: 154.48

Open Access
See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 7, Issue 4


Volume 10 (2015)

The use of benthic macroinvertebrate families for river quality assessment in Lithuania

Giedrė Višinskienė / Rasa Bernotienė
Published Online: 2012-06-03 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11535-012-0052-1


The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of environmental factors on the distribution of macroinvertebrate taxa in different sized lowland Lithuanian rivers. A secondary aim was to assess ecological river quality and to determine the most suitable biotic index. A final aim was to determine the most appropriate macroinvertebrate families for river quality assessment in Lithuania. Species composition and quantitative characteristics of benthic macroinvertebrate communities have been investigated using standard kick-sampling method by a standard hand net in 24 different river sites in spring. Physical and chemical environmental parameters were measured in the same study site as the macroinvertebrate sampling. A total of 186 taxa representing 66 families or higher taxonomic ranks of benthic macroinvertebrates have been identified. Water temperature and current velocity influenced the highest number of ivestigated families. Seven of the most tolerant and eleven of the most sensitive macroinvertebrate taxa for hydrochemical parameters related with organic pollution were determined. The DSFI method was founded to be the best index for assessment of ecological status for Lithuanian rivers until more accurate estimation method will be created.

Keywords: Benthic macroinvertebrates; Family taxonomic level; River quality indices

  • [1] EU, Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2000 establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy, OJEU, 2000, L327, 1–72 Google Scholar

  • [2] Korycińska M., Królak E., The Use of Various Biotic Indices for Evaluation of Water Quality in the Lowland Rivers of Poland (Exemplified by the Liwiec River), Polish J. of Environ. Stud., 2006, 15, 419–428 Google Scholar

  • [3] Hering D., Moog O., Sandin L., Verdonschot P.F.M., Overview and application of the AQEM assessment system, Hydrobiologia, 2004, 516, 1–20 http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/B:HYDR.0000025255.70009.a5CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [4] De Pauw N., Hawkes H.A., Biological monitoring of river water quality, In: Walley W.J., Judd S. (Eds.), Proceedings of the Freshwater Europe Symposium on River Water Quality Monitoring and Control (22–23 February 1993, Birmingham, UK), Birmingham, 1993, 87–111 Google Scholar

  • [5] Rosenberg D.M., Resh V.H., Freshwater biomonitoring and benthic macroinvertebrates, Chapman and Hall, New York, 1993 Google Scholar

  • [6] Giller P.S., Malmqvist B., The biology of Streams and Rivers, Oxford University Press Inc., New York, 1998 Google Scholar

  • [7] Armitage P.D., Moss D, Wright J.F., Furse M.T., The performance of the new biological water quality score system based on macroinvertebrates over a wide range of unpolluted running water sites, Water Res., 1983, 17, 333–347 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0043-1354(83)90188-4CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [8] Kownacki A., Soszka H., Guidelines for assessment of rivers on the basis of macroinvertebrates and macroinvertebrate sampling in lakes [Wytyczne do oceny stanu rzek na podstawie makrobezkręgowców oraz do pobierania prób makrobezkręgowców w jeziorach], Warszawa, 2004 (in Polish) Google Scholar

  • [9] Friberg N., Sandin L., Furse M.T., Larsen S.E., Clarke R.T., Haase P., Comparison of macroinvertebrate sampling methods in Europe, Hydrobiologia, 2006, 566, 365–378 http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10750-006-0083-6CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [10] Higler L.W.G., Reactions of some caddis larvae (Trichoptera) to different types of substrate in an experimental stream, Freshwat. Biol., 1975, 5, 151–158 http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2427.1975.tb00129.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [11] Whiles M.R., Dodds W.K., Relationships between Stream Size, Suspended Particles, and Filter-Feeding Macroinvertebrates in a Great Plains Drainage Network, J. Environ. Qual., 2002, 31, 1589–1600 http://dx.doi.org/10.2134/jeq2002.1589CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [12] Miserendino M.L., Pizzolon L.A., Distribution of macroinvertebrate assemblages in the Azul - Quemquemtreu river basin, Patagonia, Argentina, N. Z. J. Mar. Freshwat. Res., 2003, 37, 525–539 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00288330.2003.9517187CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [13] Sandin L., Johnson R.K., The statistical power of selected indicator metrics using macroinvertebrates for assessing acidification and eutrophication of running waters, Hydrobiologia, 2000, 422/423, 233–243 http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/A:1017082619481CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [14] Pastuchova Z., Macroinvertebrate assemblages in conditions of low-discharge streams of the Cerova’vrchovina highland in Slovakia, Limnologica, 2006, 36, 241–250 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.limno.2006.07.002CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [15] Schmidt-Kloiber A., Graf W., Lorenz A., Moog O., The AQEM/STAR taxalist - a pan-European macro-invertebrate ecological database and taxa inventory, Hydrobiologia, 2006, 566, 325–342 http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10750-006-0086-3CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [16] De Pauw N., Vanhooren G., Method for biological quality assessment of watercourses in Belgium, Hydrobiologia, 1983, 100, 153–168 http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF00027428CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [17] Skriver J., Friberg N., Kirkegaard J., Biological assessment of running waters in Denmark: introduction of the Danish Stream Fauna Index (DSFI), Int. Ver. Theor. Angew. Limnol. Verh., 2000, 27, 1822–1830 Google Scholar

  • [18] Slavevska-Stamenković V., Paunović M., Miljanović B., Kostov V., Ristovska M., Miteva D., Water Quality Assessment Based on the Macroinvertebrate Fauna - the Pcinja River Case Study, Water Res. & Manag., 2001, 1, 63–69 Google Scholar

  • [19] LAND 57-2003, Lithuanian Environmental Protection normative document “macrozoobenthos research methods in surface water bodies [Lietuvos Aplinkos apsaugos normatyvinis dokumentas „Makrozoobentoso tyrimo metodika paviršinio vandens telkiniuose], 2003 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [20] The Order of Minister of Environment of Lithuania No. D1-116, River monitoring plan, Vilnius, 2005 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [21] Kazlauskas R., Entomofauna (Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, Trichoptera) of Lithuanian rivers and their importance for salmontrout feeding, PhD thesis, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania, 1963 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [22] Ruginis T., Environmental impacts on macroinvertebrate community in the Babrungas River, Lithuania, Ekologija, 2007, 53, 51–57 Google Scholar

  • [23] Pliūraitė V., Seasonal dynamics of macroinvertebrates in the Vilnia River (Lithuania), Acta Zool. Litua., 2007, 17, 299–312 Google Scholar

  • [24] Višinskienė G., Caddisfly (Insecta, Trichoptera) diversity in Lithuania and impacts of environmental factors on their distribution and abundance, PhD thesis, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania, 2010 Google Scholar

  • [25] Bernotienė R., Bartkevičienė G., Relationship between the development of Simulium maculatum (Diptera: Simuliidae) and the thermal regime, Eur. J. Entomol., 2011, 108, 397–402 CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [26] Pliūraitė V., Comparison of biological indices for the assessment of the status of Lithuanian mediumsized streams, Fresen. Environ. Bull., 2011, 20, 2601–2609 Google Scholar

  • [27] Noble R., Cowx I., Development, evaluation & implementation of a standardised fish-based assessment method for the ecological status of European rivers - a contribution to the water framework directive (FAME), 2002 Google Scholar

  • [28] Arbačiauskas K., Benthic macroinvertebrates [Bentoso makrobestuburiai], In: Arbačiauskas K., (Ed.), Animal monitoring methods [Gyvūnijos monitoringo metodai], Institute of Ecology of Vilnius University, Vilnius, 2009 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [29] Askew R.R., The dragonflies of Europe, Harley Books, Colchester, 1988 Google Scholar

  • [30] Edington J.M., Hildrew A.G., A revised key to the caseless caddis larvae of the British Isles with notes on their ecology, Freshw. Biol. Ass. Sci. Publ., 1995, 53 Google Scholar

  • [31] Elliott J.M., Humpesch U.H., Macan T.T., Larvae of British Ephemeroptera: a key with ecological notes, Freshw. Biol. Ass. Sci. Publ., 1988, 49 Google Scholar

  • [32] Elliott J.M., Mann K.H., A key to the British freshwater leeches with notes on their life cycle and ecology, Freshw. Biol. Ass. Sci. Publ., 1998, 40 Google Scholar

  • [33] Hynes H.B.N., A key to the adults and nymphs of the British stoneflies (Plecoptera), with notes on their ecology and distribution, Freshw. Biol. Ass. Sci. Publ., 1993, 17 Google Scholar

  • [34] Yankovsky A.V., Key to Simulids of Russia and adjacent lands [Opredelitel mosek Rossii i sopredelnych territorij], St. Petersburg, 2002 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [35] Nilsson A., Aquatic Insects of North Europe, A taxonomic hand book. Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, Heteroptera, Neuroptera, Megaloptera, Coleoptera, Trichoptera, Lepidoptera, Vol. 1, 1996 Google Scholar

  • [36] Nilsson A., Aquatic Insects of North Europe, A taxonomic hand book. Odonata, Diptera, Vol. 2, 1997 Google Scholar

  • [37] Savage A.A., Macan T.T., Adults of the British aquatic Hemiptera Heteroptera a key with ecological notes, Freshw. Biol. Ass. Sci. Publ., 1989, 50 Google Scholar

  • [38] Šivickis P., Lithuanian molluscs and their identification [Lietuvos moliuskai ir jų apibūdinimas], Vilnius, 1960 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [39] Tsalolikhin S.J., Key to freshwater invertebrates of Russia and adjacent lands, Nauka, Vol. 4, Dipteran, St. Petersburg, 1999 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [40] Tsalolikhin S.J., Key to freshwater invertebrates of Russia and adjacent lands, Nauka, Vol. 5, Higher insects, St. Peterburg, 2001 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [41] Wallace I.D., Wallace B., Philipson G.N., Keys to the case-bearing caddis larvae of Britain and Ireland, Freshw. Biol. Ass., 2003 Google Scholar

  • [42] Anonymous, Manual for the application of the aqem system, Version 1.0, 2002 Google Scholar

  • [43] Durska E., Secondary succession of scuttle fly communities (Diptera: Phoridae) in moist pine forest in Białowieża Forest, Fragm. Faunistica, 2001, 44, 79–128 Google Scholar

  • [44] Brower J.E., Zar J.H. Field and laboratory methods for general ecology, Win. C. Brown Publishers, Dubuque, Iowa, 1984 Google Scholar

  • [45] Gabriels W., Lock K., De Pauw N., Goethals P.L.M., Multimetric Macroinvertebrate Index Flanders (MMIF) for biological assessment of rivers and lakes in Flanders (Belgium), Limnologica, 2010, 40, 199–207 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.limno.2009.10.001CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [46] Bis B., Zdanowicz A., Zalewski M., Effect of catchment properties on hydrochemistry, habitat complexity and invertebrate community structure in a lowland river, Hydrobiologia, 2000, 422/423 Google Scholar

  • [47] Buffagni A., Crosa G.A., Harper D.M., Kemp J.L., Using macroinvertebrate species assemblages to identify river channel habitat units: an application of the functional habitats concept to a large, unpolluted Italian river (River Ticino, northern Italy), Hydrobiologia, 2000, 435, 213–225 http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/A:1004124717508CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [48] Paunović M.M., Borković S.S., Pavlović S.Z., Saičić Z.S., Cakić P.D., Results of the 2006 Sava survey - aquatic macroinvertebrates, Arch. Biol. Sci. Belgrade, 2008, 60, 265–271 http://dx.doi.org/10.2298/ABS0802265PCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [49] Królak E., Korycińska M., Taxonomic Composition of Macroinvertebrates in the Liwiec River and its Tributaries (Central and Eastern Poland) on the Basis of Chosen Physical and Chemical Parameters of Water and Season, Polish J. of Environ. Stud., 2008, 17, 39–50 Google Scholar

  • [50] Pliūraitė V., Kesminas V., Species composition of macroinvertebrates in medium-sized Lithuanian rivers, Acta Zool. Litua., 2004, 14, 10–25 Google Scholar

  • [51] Hofmann T.A., Mason Ch.F., Habitat characteristics and the distribution of Odonata in a lowland river catchment in eastern England, Hydrobiologia, 2005, 539, 137–147 http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10750-004-3916-1CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [52] Lods-Crozet B., Castella E., Cambin D., Ilg C., Knispel S., Mayor-Simeant H., Macroinvertebrate community structure in relation to environmental variables in a Swiss glacial stream, Freshwat. Biol., 2001, 46, 1641–1661 http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-2427.2001.00850.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [53] Caissie D., The thermal regime of rivers: a review, Freshwat. Biol., 2006, 51, 1389–1406 http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2427.2006.01597.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [54] Odum J., Ecology [Ekologia], 1986 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [55] Višinskienė G., Bernotienė R., Distribution of aquatic insects in the benthos of different rivers in Lithuania [Vandens vabzdžių pasiskirstymas skirtingo dydžio Lietuvos upių bentoso], Žuvininkystė Lietuvoje (Fish. Aquac. Lith.), 2009, 10, 211–224 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [56] Arscott D.B., Keller B., Tockner K., Ward J.V., Habitat structure and Trichoptera diversity in two headwater flood plains, N.E. Italy, Int. Rev. Hydrobiol., 2003, 88, 255–273 http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/iroh.200390023CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [57] Dahl J., Johnson R.K., Sandin L., Detection of organic pollution of streams in southern Sweden using benthic macroinvertebrates, Hydrobiologia, 2004, 516, 161–172 http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/B:HYDR.0000025264.35531.cbCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [58] Carlsoon G., Environmental factors influencing blackfly populations, Bull. Org. Mond. Sante. Bull. Wld. Hlth Org., 1967, 37, 139–150 Google Scholar

  • [59] Rubtsov I.A., Simuliids as indicators of pollution of flowing waters [Moshki kak indikatory zagriaznenija tekyshchih vod. Biologicheskije metody ocenki prirodnoj sredy], In: Sokolov V.E. (Ed.), Biological evaluation of natural environment, Moscow, 1978 (in Russian) Google Scholar

  • [60] Di Sabatino A., Gerecke R., Martin P., The biology and ecology of lotic water mites (Hydrachnidia), Freshwat. Biol., 2000, 44, 47–62 http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-2427.2000.00591.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [61] Bernotienė R., Biomass and abundance of dipterous insects (Insecta: Diptera) in benthos of running water [Dvisparnių vabzdžių (Insecta: Diptera) biomasė ir gausumas upių bentoso], Žuvininkystė Lietuvoje (Fish. Aquac. Lith.), 2010, 10, 200–210 (in Lithuanian) Google Scholar

  • [62] Timm H., Mardi K., Möls T., Macroinvertebrates in Estonian streams: the effects of habitat, season, and sampling effort on some common metrics of biological quality, Est. J. Ecol. 2008, 57, 37–57 http://dx.doi.org/10.3176/eco.2008.1.03CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [63] Derka T., Kováčová J., Bulánková E., Substrate importance for selected macrozoobenthic communities in Rudava river, Folia Faunist. Slovaca, 2001, 6, 59–68 Google Scholar

  • [64] Pliūraitė V., Patterns of macrozoobenthos changes in Lithuanian rivers, PhD thesis, Vilnius, Lithuania, 2006 Google Scholar

  • [65] Vannote R.L., Minshall G.W., Cumminsk K.W., Sedell J.R., Cushing C.E. The river continuum concept, Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci., 1980, 37, 130–137 http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/f80-017CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [66] Böhmer J., Rawer-Jost C., Zenker A., Meier C, Feld Ch.K., Biss R., et al., Assessing streams in Germany with benthic invertebrates: Development of a multimetric invertebrate based assessment system, Limnologica, 2004, 34, 416–432 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0075-9511(04)80010-0CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [67] Vlek H.E., Verdonschot P.F.M., Nijboer R.C., Towards a multimetric index for the assessment of Dutch streams using benthic macroinvertebrates, Hydrobiologia, 2004, 516, 173–189 http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/B:HYDR.0000025265.36836.e1CrossrefGoogle Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2012-06-03

Published in Print: 2012-08-01

Citation Information: Open Life Sciences, Volume 7, Issue 4, Pages 741–758, ISSN (Online) 2391-5412, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11535-012-0052-1.

Export Citation

© 2012 Versita Warsaw. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

Aneta Spyra, Justyna Kubicka, and Małgorzata Strzelec
Ecological Chemistry and Engineering S, 2017, Volume 24, Number 2

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in