(May 31-June 1, 1996) Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens - BioBlitz Washington D.C. Copepoda List
Osphranticum labronectum **
Skistodiaptomus pallidus **
Eurytemora affinis **
Acanthocyclops robustus s.l. **
Diacyclops navus **
Mesocyclops americanus **
Mesocyclops ruttneri **
Orthocyclops modestus **
Paracyclops poppei **
Canthocamptus vagus **
Seven habitats were investigated on 1 June 1996: the "natural" pond (near the visitor center), four lily display ponds, the natural marsh adjacent to the display ponds, the marsh (which connects to the Anacostia River), two woodland vernal pools, seeps near the marsh, and two greenhouses. The copepod assemblages are typical for the region and the habitats, although they seem to be somewhat depauperate. Specifically, the list of harpacticoids is short; some species (Attheyella, Bryocamptus) should occur at least in the marsh and the vernal pools, but were not found there. The large population of Elaphoidella bidens in the pond by the visitor center probably indicates eutrophic conditions.
10 of the 18 species collected at Kenilworth during the Bio-Blitz are new records for the District of Columbia. They are indicated by asterisks (**). Two samples from the "Shaw Lily Ponds" (a former name for the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens) taken in 1926 and archived at the National Museum of Natural History proved to contain Onychodiaptomus birgei, Diacyclops thomasi, Eucyclops agilis, and Mesocyclops edax. The first two species, although they are common in the region, were not collected at Kenilworth on June 1. They are included in the list above.
Some species, such as Mesocyclops americanus and Orthocyclops modestus, are rarely collected. This is probably because they prefer ephemeral habitats that are seldom investigated, not because the species themselves are rare. Specimens of these have been archived in the National Museum of Natural History collections (Department of Invertebrate Zoology). The "surprise" of this collection is the presence of the Asian native Mesocyclops ruttneri, not only in both greenhouses investigated, but in two of the display ponds. Mesocyclops ruttneri was first described from a greenhouse in Austria. That greenhouse was destroyed even before the description was published, and no populations are now known to exist in Europe. However, populations of M. ruttneri have been discovered in Louisiana and Mississippi, especially in ricefields (Reid, 1993). Its Asian distribution includes temperate China, and it may be able to survive in the D.C. region. In the lily ponds, it occurred in small numbers together with two North American congeners, M. edax and M. americanus. This co-occurrence suggests that it may not be in competition with them.
Thanks to my husband Willis for field assistance, to Stephen Syphax of the National Park Service for collection advice, and to Eleanora I. Robbins and her assistants Kristen McDuffee and Briget McArdle of the U.S. Geological Survey for collecting and sorting some of the samples.
Reid, J.W. 1993. New records and redescriptions of American species of Mesocyclops and of Diacyclops bernardi (Petkovski, 1986) (Copepoda, Cyclopoida). Bijdragen tot de Dierkunde 63: 173-191.
Janet W. Reid
Department of Invertebrate Zoology/ MRC-163
National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution
Washington DC 20560
tel (202) 357-4674 fax (202) 357-3043
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