US Long-Term Ecological Research Network
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Adjacent ecosystems are influenced by organisms that move across boundaries, such as insects with aquatic larval stages and terrestrial adult stages that transport energy and nutrients from water to land. However, the ecosystem-level effect of aquatic insects on land has generally been ignored, perhaps because the organisms themselves are individually small. At the naturally productive Lake Mývatn, Iceland we measured relative midge density on land using passive aerial infall traps during the summers 2008-2011. These traps, a cup with a small amount of lethal preservative, were placed along transects perpendicular to the lake edge and extending ~150-500 m into the shoreline ecosystem and were sampled approximately weekly from May-August. The measurements of midge relative abundance over land were then used to develop a local maximum decay function model to predict proportional midge deposition with distance from the lake (Dreyer et al. in press). In general, peak midge deposition occurs 20-25 m inland and 70% of midges are deposited within 100 m of shore.
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