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


More options …
Volume 71, Issue 7


Studies on eucrenal-hypocrenal zonation of springs along the river mainstream: A case study of a karst canyon in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Vladimir Pešić / Dejan Dmitrović
  • Department of Biology, University of Banjaluka, Mladena Stojanovića 2, Banjaluka, Republic of Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Ana Savić
  • Department of Biology and Ecology, Faculty of Sciences and Mathematics, University of Niš, Višegradska 33, 18 000 Niš, Serbia
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Stefanie von Fumetti
Published Online: 2016-08-11 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/biolog-2016-0095


The canyons in Dinaric karst are known to harbour a diverse aquatic fauna living in springs along the river mainstream. However, the knowledge on the ecology of these springs and also on the springs in mountainous areas of the Balkan Peninsula in general is poor. This study is focused on the macroinvertebrate assemblages of three different types of springs along the Cvrcka River (Republic of Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina). The aim of this study was to check whether existing criteria for regional spring zonations in Central Europe are applicable also for riparian springs with short springbrooks bordering high order streams. The macroinvertebrates were collected seasonally for one year at two different distances from the source: at the source, and approximately 2–3 m from the source (“springbrook”). At the spring sources, we found 59 species and higher taxa while in the springbrooks 61 species and higher taxa were recorded. Diptera represented the most abundant taxon, followed by Amphipoda and Trichoptera. No strong trend for the Margalef’s index for the spring source and springbrook was detected, while the Shannon’s diversity index increased in the springbrook of the studied springs. Our analysis did not prove significant differences between the macroinvertebrate assemblages from the source and springbrook. Based on faunistic data we suggest that small riparian springs with a short outflow likely do not exhibit true spring zonation but may show a “quasi-zonation” defined as a possible hidden differentiation between spring source and springbrook. Our study shows that criteria for spring zonation are not suitable for riparian springs bordering high order streams.

Key words: springs; macroinvertebrate assemblage; zonation; environmental factors


  • Barquin J. & Death G. 2004. Patterns of invertebrate diversity in streams and freshwater springs in Northern Spain. Arch. Hydrobiol 161 (3): 329–349. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Bauernfeind E. & Soldán T. 2012. The Mayflies of Europe (Ephemeroptera). Apollo Books, Ollerup, 781 pp. ISBN: 9788788757453, 8788757455Google Scholar

  • Bottazzi E., Bruno M.C., Pieri V., Di Sabatino A., Silveri L., Carolli M. & Rossetti G. 2011. Spatial and seasonal distribution of invertebrates in Northern Apennine rheocrene springs. J. Limnol. 70 (Suppl. 1): 77–92. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Boulton A.J. 2005. Chances and challenges in the conservation of groundwaters and their dependent ecosystems. Aquat. Conserv. 15 (4): 319–323. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Brinkhurst R.O. & Jamieson B.G.M. 1971. Aquatic Oligochaeta of the World. Oliver and Boyd, Edinburgh, 860 pp. ISBN: 0050021559, 978-0050021552Google Scholar

  • Cantonati M., Gerecke R. & Bertuzzi E. 2006. Springs of the Alps – sensitive ecosystems to environmental change: from biodiversity assessments to long-term studies. Hydrobiologia 562 (1): 59–96. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Clarke K.R. & Gorley R.N. 2015. PRIMER v7: User Manual/Tutorial. PRIMER-E. Plymouth, UK, 296 pp.Google Scholar

  • Collier K.J. & Smith B.J. 2006. Distinctive invertebrate assemblages in rockface seepages enhance lotic biodiversity in northern New Zealand. Biodiv. Conserv. 15: 3591–3616. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Crema S., Ferrarese U., Golo D., Modena P., Sambugar B. & Gerecke. R. 1996. Ricerche sulla fauna bentonica ed interstiziale di ambienti sorgentizi in area alpina e prealpina [A research on benthonic and interstitial fauna in Alpine and pre-Alpine springs]. Report Centro Ecologia Alpina 8: 1–104.Google Scholar

  • Danks H.V. & Williams D.D. 1991. Arthropods of springs, with particular reference to Canada: Synthesis and needs for research. In: Williams D.D. & Danks H.V. (eds), Arthropods of springs, with particular reference to Canada. Mem. Entomol. Soc. Can. 123 (Suppl. S155): 203–217. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Di Sabatino A., Cicolani B. & Gerecke R. 2003. Biodiversity and distribution of water mites (Acari, Hydrachnidia) in spring habitats. Freshwater Biol. 48 (12): 2163–2173. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Di Sabatino A., Gerecke R., Gledhill T. & Smit H. 2010. Chelicerata: Acari II. Series: Süßwasserfauna von Mitteleuropa 7/2-2. Spektrum, Heidelberg, 234 pp. ISBN: 978-3-8274–1894-4Google Scholar

  • Erman N.A. & Erman D.C. 1995. Spring permanence, Trichoptera species richness and the role of drought. J. Kansas Entomol. Soc. 68 (2) Suppl.: 50–64.Google Scholar

  • Fischer J. 1996. Bewertungsverfahren zur Quellfauna. Crunoecia 5: 227–240.Google Scholar

  • Gerecke R., Meisch C., Stoch F., Acri F. & Franz H. 1998. Eucrenon-hypocrenon ecotone and spring typology in the Alps of Berchtesgaden (Upper Bavaria, Germany). A study of microcrustacea (Crustacea: Copepoda, Ostracoda) and water mites (Acari: Halacaridae, Hydrachnellae), pp. 167–182. In: Botosaneanu L. (ed.), Studies in Crenobiology: the Biology of Springs and Springbrooks, Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, 261 pp. ISBN: 90-73348-04-8Google Scholar

  • Glazier D.S. 1991. The fauna of North American temperate cold springs: patterns and hypotheses. Freshwater Biol. 26 (3): 527–542. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Glóer P. & Pešić V. 2014. Belgrandiella bozidarcurcici n. sp., a new species from Bosnia and Hercegovina (Gastropoda: Hydrobiidae). Arch. Biol. Sci. (Belgrade) 66 (2): 461–464. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Grosser C., Pešić V. & Dmitrović D. 2014. Dina sketi n. sp., a new erpobdellid leech (Hirudinida: Erpobdellidae) from Bosnia and Herzegovina. Zootaxa 3793: 393–397. .CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Hahn H.J. 2000. Studies on classifying of undisturbed springs in southwestern Germany by macrobenthic communities. Limnologica 30 (3): 247–259.Google Scholar

  • Hoffsten P.-O. & Malmqvist B. 2000. The macroinvertebrate fauna and hydrogeology of springs in central Sweden. Hydrobiologia 436 (1): 91–104. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Illies J. 1952. Die Mólle. Faunistisch-ókologische Untersuchungen an einem Forellenbach im Lipper Bergland. Arch. Hydrobiol. 46: 424–612.Google Scholar

  • Illies J. & Botosaneanu L. 1963. Problèmes et méthodes de la classification et de la zonation écologique des eaux courantes, considérées surtout du point de vue faunistique. Mitt. Internat. Verein. Limnol. 12: 1–57.Google Scholar

  • Ilmonen J. & Paasivirta L. 2005. Benthic macrocrustacean and insect assemblages in relation to spring habitat characteristics: patterns in abundance and diversity. Hydrobiologia 533 (1): 99–113. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Krebs C.J. 2001. Ecology: The Experimental Analysis of Distribution, Abundance. Benjamin/Cummings, San Francisco, 695 pp. ISBN: 0321042891, 9780321042897Google Scholar

  • McCabe D.J. 1998. Biological communities in springbrooks, pp. 221–228. In: Botosaneanu L. (ed.), Studies in Crenobiology. The Biology of Springs and Springbrooks, Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, 261 pp. ISBN: 9073348048, 9789073348042Google Scholar

  • Mori N. & Brancelj A. 2006. Macroinvertebrate communities of karst springs of two river catchments in the Southern Limestone Alps (the Julian Alps, NW Slovenia). Aquat Ecol. 40 (1): 69–83. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Pešić V., Smit H., Gerecke R. & Di Sabatino A. 2010. The water mites (Acari: Hydrachnidia) of the Balkan peninsula, a revised survey with new records and descriptions of five new taxa. Zootaxa 2586: 1–100.Google Scholar

  • Płóciennik M., Dmitrović D., Pešić V. & Gadawski P. 2016. Ecological patterns of Chironomidae assemblages in Dynaric karst springs. Knowl. Manag. Aquat. Ecosyst. 417: 11. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Resh V.H. 1983. Spatial differences in the distribution of benthic macroinvertebrates along a springbrook. Aquat. Insects 5 (4): 193–200. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Sambugar B., Dessi G., Sapelza A.M Stenico A., Thaler B. & Veneri A. 2006. Fauna sorgentizia in Alto Adige. Provincia Autonoma di Bolzano, 372 pp.Google Scholar

  • Smith H. 2002. The hydro-ecology of limestone springs in the Wye Valley, Derbyshire. Water and Environment Journal 16 (4): 253–259. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Ter Braak C.J.F. & Šmilauer P. 2002. CANOCO Reference manual and CanoDraw for Windows User’s Guide: Software for Canonical Community Ordination (version 4.5), 2nd ed., Microcomputer Power, Ithaca, New York, 500 pp.Google Scholar

  • van der Kamp R.O. 1995. The hydrogeology of springs in relation to the biodiversity of spring fauna: A review. J. Kansas Entomol. Soc. 68 (2) Suppl.: 4–17.Google Scholar

  • Vitecek S, Previšić A., Kucinić M., Balint M., Keresztes L., Waringer J., Pauls S.U., Malicky H. & Graf W. 2015. Description of a new species of Wormaldia from Sardinia and a new Drusus species from the Western Balkans (Trichoptera, Philopotamidae, Limnephilidae). ZooKeys 496: 85–103. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • von Fumetti S. & Nagel P. 2012. Discharge variability and its effect on faunistic assemblages in springs. Freshwater Sci. 31 (2): 647–656.Google Scholar

  • von Fumetti S., Nagel P. & Baltes B. 2007. Where a springhead becomes a springbrook-a regional zonation of springs. Fundam. Appl. Limnol. 169 (1): 37–48. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • von Fumetti S., Nagel P., Scheifhacken N. & Baltes B. 2006. Factors governing macrozoobenthic assemblages in perennial springs in north-western Switzerland. Hydrobiologia 568 (1): 467–475. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Ward J.V. & Tockner K. 2001. Biodiversity: Towards a unifying theme for river ecology. Freshwater Biol. 46 (6): 807–819. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Webb D.W., Wetzel M.J., Reed P.C., Philippe L.R. & Young T.C. 1998. The macroninvertebrate biodiversity, water quality, and hydrogeology of ten karst springs in the Salem Plateau of Illinois, pp. 39–48. In: Botosaneanu L. (ed.), Studies in Crenobiology: The Biology of Springs and Springbrooks, Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, 261 pp. ISBN: 90-73348-04-8Google Scholar

  • Wigger F.W., Schmidlin L., Nagel P. & von Fumetti S. 2015. Macroinvertebrate assemblages of natural springs along an altitudinal gradient in the Bernese Alps, Switzerland. Ann. Limnol. 51 (3): 237–247. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

About the article

Received: 2016-02-18

Accepted: 2016-05-25

Published Online: 2016-08-11

Published in Print: 2016-07-01

Citation Information: Biologia, Volume 71, Issue 7, Pages 809–817, ISSN (Online) 1336-9563, ISSN (Print) 0006-3088, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/biolog-2016-0095.

Export Citation

©2016 Institute of Zoology, Slovak Academy of Sciences.Get Permission

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.

Vladimir Pešić, Ana Savić, Aleksandra Jabłońska, Grzegorz Michoński, Michał Grabowski, Aleksandra Bańkowska, and Andrzej Zawal
Experimental and Applied Acarology, 2019, Volume 77, Number 4, Page 471
Vladimir Pešić, Dejan Dmitrović, Ana Savić, Đurađ Milošević, Andrzej Zawal, Vesna Vukašinović‐Pešić, and Stefanie Von Fumetti
Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 2019, Volume 29, Number 3, Page 341
Violeta Berlajolli, Mateusz Płóciennik, Olga Antczak-Orlewska, and Vladimir Pešić
Knowledge & Management of Aquatic Ecosystems, 2019, Number 420, Page 6
Ivana Pozojević, Andreja Brigić, and Sanja Gottstein
Experimental and Applied Acarology, 2018
Andrzej Zawal, Robert Stryjecki, Edyta Buczyńska, Paweł Buczyński, Joanna Pakulnicka, Aleksandra Bańkowska, Tomasz Czernicki, Katarzyna Janusz, Agnieszka Szlauer-Łukaszewska, and Vladimir Pešić
PeerJ, 2018, Volume 6, Page e4797
Marina Vilenica, Marija Ivković, Michel Sartori, and Zlatko Mihaljević
Aquatic Ecology, 2017, Volume 51, Number 3, Page 417

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in