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Estonian Journal of Ecology

Occurrence of Cladocera and the genetic diversity of Daphnia cucullata in the pelagic zone of Latvian salmonid lakes; pp. 244–264

Full article in PDF format | doi: 10.3176/eco.2013.4.02

Aija Brakovska, Jana Paidere, Renāte Škute, Nataļja Škute, Artūrs Škute


Cladocerans are a considerable food source for such planktivorous fish as salmonids. In Latvia 26 lakes are categorized as priority fish lakes for salmonids and therefore studies on cladocerans as salmonid fish prey are of particular interest. For the study of salmonids’ food base, i.e. zooplankton diversity, and the genetical diversity of Daphnia cucullata in four Latvian lakes zooplankton samples were taken in the summers of 2010 and 2011. The most dominant species of Cladocera were Diaphanosoma brachyurum, Daphnia cucullata, Bosmina crassicornis, Bosmina longispina, and Bosmina longirostris. The highest diversity and biomass of cladocerans were observed from June to late July. This can be explained by seasonality. The common cladoceran species such as Daphnia cucullata may be used as a good model organism for ecological genetics research. We found D. cucullata in all the investigated lakes. The genetic structure and plasticity in D. cucullata were studied using nuclear random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). Carl Roth random primers PCR were used for the amplification of DNA samples. The DNA markers were polymorphic segments with band sizes from 500 to 3000 bp. The number of polymorphic DNA bands of D. cucullata in the four investigated lakes was different.


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