Rotifers in Lithotelmata
Lithotelma Kerfiat, Brittany, France

The coastal landscape of Brittany is characterized by granite rocks, especially in the north, on the top of which there are often dents that can fill with water. (Lithotelmata). In these puddles, some special rotifers were found, whose characteristic combinations do not correspond to those taxa described in the literature so far.

The puddles existing at the coastline are enriched by the waves and also by the associated spray with saltwater, these should be ignored here.

The puddles in question here are the puddles that are located above the break-off edge and that are fed with rainwater. Especially in the two hot summers of 2019 and 2020, these puddles are very often dried out, but then they are fed again by rain. Sometimes the puddles are filled by dark sediment/ detritus, the temperatures become quite high due to the intense sunshine. In contrast to bird baths or rock puddles in Germany /NRW the temperatures in winter in Brittany are above 0 degrees Celsius, so that no frost occurs. Some of the found taxa are very conspicuous by their red color of both the integument and the stomach contents. The green algae Haematococcus pluvialis could not be detected in any of the samples. These puddles are enriched with biomass by flower parts and pollen from the surrounding meadow plants. The rotifers in the freshwater puddles are bdelloid rotifers with one exception: in a, however somewhat shaded, rock puddle a large amount of the monogonont rotifers Epiphanes senta was found, a species that can also be found in NRW in ephemeral path puddles and water-filled footprints of cattle.

The following images show some taxa of the rotifers found in these lithotelmata:

Abrochtha intermedia
Abrochtha sp.
Adineta sp. 16
Adineta sp. 18
Adineta sp. 26
Adineta sp. 34
Epiphanes senta
Philodina sp.3
Philodina sp.7
Philodina vorax
freshwater life
marine life