Todd A. Wellnitz

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The effects of the acanthocephalan parasite Pomphorhynchus laevis on the behavior of its crustacean intermediate host, the amphipod Echinogammarus stammeri, were studied. A drift study revealed that infected amphipods were disproportionately represented in drift samples taken throughout a 24-hr period; infection with more than 1 parasite enhanced this(More)
The acanthocephalan parasite Pomphorhynchus laevis (Müller, 1776) uses freshwater amphipods as its intermediate host. In order to complete the life cycle, the infected amphipod must be consumed by a fish, where the acanthocephalan will mature and reproduce. Parasite transmission, and therefore fitness, could be enhanced if infected amphipods fail to detect(More)
Organisms frequently show marked preferences for specific environmental conditions, but these preferences may change with landscape scale. Patterns of distribution or abundance measured at different scales may reveal something about an organism's perception of the environment. To test this hypothesis, we measured densities of two herbivorous aquatic insects(More)
Current velocity is a pervasive feature of lotic systems, yet this defining environmental variable is rarely examined as a factor for regulating stream herbivory. To investigate how current modifies herbivory in the upper Colorado River, U.S.A., loops of electrified fencing wire were used to reduce in situ grazer densities on 30 × 30 cm tile substrates.(More)
In field measurements and laboratory experiments we assessed the influence of high levels of iron, manganese, and concurrent blooms of iron-depositing bacteria, Leptothrix ochracea, on macroinvertebrates. Macroinvertebrate communities in five of six streams were depauerate inside blooms. Reasons for the decreased abundance vary among taxa, with our(More)
We conducted streamside experiments to determine if the ability of herbivorous insects to remove algal periphyton varies with local current velocity. We used two mayfly species (Baetis bicaudatus and Drunella grandis) and one caddisfly species (Glossosoma verdona), which differ from one another in body morphology and mobility. Periphyton was grown for 30(More)
eaten it? Does it grow faster or differently from un-grazed algae? To address these questions, an experiment conducted in streamside channels documented the re-growth of algae following grazing by two mayfly species. We found that algal re-growth did not depend on which mayfly species ate it; rather, it was the duration of grazing that mattered. The longer(More)
The modification of flows in lotic ecosystems can have dramatic effects on abiotic and biotic processes and change the structure of basal trophic levels. In high-gradient streams, most of the biota are benthic, and decreased flow may homogenize and reduce benthic current velocity, potentially changing stream ecosystem function. Grazing by macroinvertebrates(More)
By shaping the architecture and taxonomic composition of periphyton, stream current may create periphytic mats on which some grazers can feed and forage more effectively than others. Current-mediated periphytic structure also has the potential to foster positive interactions among grazers if one grazer’s foraging facilitates another’s access to algal food.(More)