Aquatic invertebrates

CNR-IRSA activities related to INHABIT

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Aquatic invertebrates

The set of data available at the CNR-IRSA related to river benthic macroinvertebrates and collected in about 20 years of research during national and international projects, are organized in a dedicated MS Access database. The database allows the storage and the export of a wide range of information from stream reaches located in many Italian regions (Piemonte, Lombardia, Veneto, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Alto-Adige, Emilia-Romagna, Toscana, Lazio, Campania, Calabria, Puglia, Sardegna) plus some foreign areas (Cyprus), from many different river types. Many different information are available from different spatial scales from at least 800 different river stretches, for a total of more than 8000 biological samples and more than 160000 single records.
The database contains:

  • geographic data related to the investigated river reaches;
  • environmental data necessary for river types definition;
  • environmental quality data, including main physico-chemical and microbiological parameters;
  • abiotic descriptors;
  • data related to the single sampling units;
  • biological data (i.e. taxa list and the number of individuals per taxon), related to the macrobenthic communities, identified at different taxonomic levels and collected at different spatial scales;
  • data on the life cycles of Ephemeroptera;
  • biological metrics calculated on the basis of the available taxa lists;
  • bibliographic data related to distribution, taxonomy and biological and ecological characteristics of some of the collected taxa.

Together with MS Access database, a specific software for the input of macroinvertebrates taxalist is also used - AQEMdip (AQEM-STAR, 2003. AQEMdip software, developed in the 2000s within EU projects AQEM and STAR, contains a number of facilities for data entry and export. A brief description of AQEMdip is also available in Italian in Deliverable I1d2 (Rivers).
The Access database is periodically updated by data entry, or import of new data previously exported from AQEMdip in MS Excel format.