The macrobenthos of the Loire river was surveyed for three decades since 1977. The sampling program was carried out seasonally in the middle Loire catchment between 1981 and 1998-2000. A species list was established and fluctuations of populations were evidenced. Populations mainly belong to insect orders (Plecoptera, Ephemeroptera, Trichoptera, and Odonata) typical of european large rivers, often in regression or disappeared from the other French great rivers. The stonefly Isoperla obscura and the mayfly Oligoneuriella pallida have not been collected during the last twenty years or so. During this period, Xanthoperla apicalis (Plecoptera), Dacnogenia coerulans and Serratella ntesoleuca (Ephemeroptera) clearly regressed whereas populations of Brachycercus europaeus (Ephemeroptera) and Brachycentrus subnubilus (Trichoptera) are on the contrary in expansion. Beside the old-established communities of allochtonous species (Hydrozoa, Planaria, Oligochaeta, Gastropoda, Bivalvia and Crustacea), are recorded some recent invasive species: Corbicula sp. (Bivalvia), and through canals, ponto-caspians organisms (Bryozoa and Crustacea).
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