Linking organism groups - major results and conclusions from the STAR project

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Here we summarize results of the EU funded research project STAR concerning the suitability of different organism groups (fish, benthic invertebrates, macrophytes, diatoms) for monitoring European rivers. In a general way, the suitability of the organism groups is classified by monitoring type, stress type, river type, temporal scale and taxonomic resolution. For example, although all organism groups are affected by acidification, the relatively low species richness of fish and macrophytes in small mountain streams makes these two groups less suitable, and, hence, we argue that benthic diatoms and/or invertebrates may be considered as more robust indicators. Similar, lines of reasoning are given for a number of stressor and stream types.

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