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2 General Ecology

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Chapter Summary

This chapter describes the ecological characteristics of each species of the Chironomidae occurring in the Netherlands and adjacent lowlands, and provides information on identifying the larvae. It discusses adult flying and dispersal, the life history of the Chironomidae, larva sampling methods, fluctuations in numbers and the effects of environmental factors such as the quality of food and ambient temperature. In the chapter, the development from egg to adult is discussed as far as this is important for understanding the ecology of the species and for identification. Brief attention is paid to pupae, exuviae and adults because they are often sampled additionally or as an alternative to sampling larvae. When discussing the ecology of chironomids in the book, the author uses species names whenever possible because the ecology of related species is usually different.

Keywords: Chironomidae ecology; exuviae; larva sampling method; Netherlands; pupae



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