Dragonfly Project

The effects of fish predation on the community composition of odonate larvae and the parasitism of adults.
– Kelly MacDonald, Serena Mohamed, Dr. Jean-Philippe Lessard (Concordia University)

The goals of this project are to 1) examine the effects that rainbow trout predation have on the species of dragonfly larvae found in lakes and 2) determine the effects of this predation on the parasitism of adults by mites throughout the summer. Dragonfly larvae were sampled from 15 lakes of similar size at the beginning of the summer, half of which contained fish. It was hypothesized that though the number of species would be similar between lakes with and without fish, predation would have a significant role in determining the types of species present. As well, every two weeks for the remainder of the summer, one fish and one fishless lake were sampled, in order to determine whether or not the presence of fish affected parasitism on adult dragonflies. This project will determine whether fish predation is the main determinant of community composition and dynamics for dragonfly or whether another mechanism is responsible. In 2018, 70 species from 29 genera were found as larvae in Kenauk lakes. It was also determined that the presence of fish drastically reduces the amount of parasitism on adult dragonflies and damselflies.

Stay tuned for results