FRESHWATER ECOSYSTEMS

The Freshwater ecosystems research group focuses its activity on studying the main factors that determine the composition, operation and interrelation of these ecosystems, as well as their response to human activity.

The main interest of the group lies in researching and determining the main biophysical mechanisms that confer resilience to continental aquatic ecosystems and adjacent terrestrial ecosystems, allowing them to maintain their functionality and biodiversity in the face of natural or anthropogenic disturbances.

In addition, part of its activity is devoted to transferring acquired knowledge and developing tools to improve the management and conservation of natural resources, making itself available to government agencies and private companies.

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Ecology of fresh water

Remote sensing and ecological modeling

Monitoring and evaluation of the state of ecosystems and species

Characterization of ecosystem services

Conservation and management of ecosystems, habitats, communities and species

Ecology of fresh water

Monitoring and evaluation of the state of ecosystems and species

Characterization of ecosystem services

Conservation and management of ecosystems, habitats, communities and species

Remote sensing and ecological modeling

TECHNICAL RESOURCES

field campaigns equipment

  • Physico-chemical Multi-probes with rhodamine sensor
  • Temperature-Oxygen, Water Temperature-Level and
  • Temperature-Light probes
  • SonTek RiverSurveyor – M9 Acoustic Doppler Profiler
  • SonTek FlowTracker Handheld – Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter
  • Laser Scanner Focus3D
  • Electrofishing back-pack ELT60II HONDA GXV50
  • Metabolism incubation chambers
  • Field Spectrum-Radiometer ASD FieldSpec 4 & White Spectralon panel
  • Macroinvertebrate sampling gear

field campaigns equipment

  • Physico-chemical Multi-probes with rhodamine sensor
  • Temperature-Oxygen, Water Temperature-Level and
  • Temperature-Light probes
  • SonTek RiverSurveyor – M9 Acoustic Doppler Profiler
  • SonTek FlowTracker Handheld – Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter
  • Laser Scanner Focus3D
  • Electrofishing back-pack ELT60II HONDA GXV50
  • Metabolism incubation chambers
  • Field Spectrum-Radiometer ASD FieldSpec 4 & White Spectralon panel
  • Macroinvertebrate sampling gear

experimental facilities

R+D+i PROJECTS

EUROPEAN RESEARCH PROGRAMS

DRYvER

DRYvER is a project of the EU-Horizon 2020 programme, which aims to collect, analyse and model data from nine temporary river networks in Europe and South America to create a novel meta-ecosystem approach incorporating hydrology, socio-economics, ecology and biogeochemistry in order to develop strategies, tools, guidelines and recommendations for the adaptive management of river networks on a European and global scale.
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DIVAQUA

LIFE DIVAQUA is a conservation project funded by the European Commission’s LIFE programme. The actions included in the DIVAQUA project aim to maintain and improve the conservation status of the habitats and species of Community interest that appear in the inland aquatic ecosystems of the DIVAQUA area (basins that drain the Picos de Europa National Park; Northern Spain).
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FPCUP (Copernicus)

The FPCUP project aims to increase the number of Copernicus users in national and international administrations, research centres and companies. IHCantabria participates in different FPCUP actions coordinated at a European level, such as LULUCF, with the aim of improving the reporting of GHG emissions, or CopRIVER, aimed at complementing the European product Riparian Zones, and coordinates others aimed at training and the creation of user networks, such as ApliCOP and CopTRAIN.
Learn More about Copernicus
Learn More about LULUCF
Learn More about ApliCOP

ALICE

Its main objective is to promote sustainable investments in blue and green infrastructures (BGINs) by identifying the benefits of the ecosystem services provided at the land-water and land-sea interfaces in the Atlantic Region.
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EUROFLOW

EUROFLOW-MSCA-ITN-2017
A european training and research network for environmental flow management in river basins. Focused on the development of multidisciplinary approaches for river basin management and environmental flows, and training a cohort of researchers to be future leaders in the science and policy of this field.
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ALICE

Its main objective is to promote sustainable investments in blue and green infrastructures (BGINs) by identifying the benefits of the ecosystem services provided at the land-water and land-sea interfaces in the Atlantic Region.
Learn More

EUROFLOW

EUROFLOW-MSCA-ITN-2017
A european training and research network for environmental flow management in river basins. Focused on the development of multidisciplinary approaches for river basin management and environmental flows, and training a cohort of researchers to be future leaders in the science and policy of this field.
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NATIONAL RESEARCH PLANS

WATERLANDS

WATERLANDS aims to understand the links between river hydrological patterns and land cover and forest dynamics in order to integrate the implementation of nature-based solutions into water resources planning. A secondary objective is to link hydrological and thermal regimes from climate patterns and land cover dynamics to the functioning patterns of the river ecosystem.
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HYDRA

HYDRA will focus on how the operation of rivers and the supply of services are affected by the hydrological alteration (HA) of the operation of dams and changes in land use.
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WATERLANDS

WATERLANDS aims to understand the links between river hydrological patterns and land cover and forest dynamics in order to integrate the implementation of nature-based solutions into water resources planning. A secondary objective is to link hydrological and thermal regimes from climate patterns and land cover dynamics to the functioning patterns of the river ecosystem.
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HYDRA

HYDRA will focus on how the operation of rivers and the supply of services are affected by the hydrological alteration (HA) of the operation of dams and changes in land use.
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TECHNOLOGICAL TRANSFER

MOLBIO

The MOLBIO project is an industrial research project developed by the ECOHYDROS S.L. SME with the collaboration of IHCantabria. The project focuses on the research, from a service and associated product perspective, of the possibilities of applying the environmental DNA technique for the identification and estimation of species biomass in freshwater ecosystems. By means of specific experiments, the aim is to solve some uncertainties that currently exist, to define and validate new methodologies for monitoring and following up biological indicators in rivers.

Nature 2000 Network in Cantabria

IHCantabria collaborated in drafting the Management Plan for the spaces of the Natura 2000 Network in Cantabria, an administrative instrument that lays out the management guidelines, objectives and measures needed to guarantee achieving and/or maintaining the proper conservation of habitats and species of community interest in Cantabria.
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Monitoring the effects of global change in European Peaks National Park (PNPE)

The assessment of the effects of global change on aquatic ecosystems of the national park started in 2012 and continued with several projects (CENTINELA, BIOGLOB and MONITOREA) providing a long-term monitoring program. This program is essential to unravel the effects of global change (such as land use and changing climate conditions) on the aquatic ecosystems of European Peaks National Park.
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Access the Collected Data

MOLBIO

The MOLBIO project is an industrial research project developed by the ECOHYDROS S.L. SME with the collaboration of IHCantabria. The project focuses on the research, from a service and associated product perspective, of the possibilities of applying the environmental DNA technique for the identification and estimation of species biomass in freshwater ecosystems. By means of specific experiments, the aim is to solve some uncertainties that currently exist, to define and validate new methodologies for monitoring and following up biological indicators in rivers.

Nature 2000 Network in Cantabria

IHCantabria collaborated in drafting the Management Plan for the spaces of the Natura 2000 Network in Cantabria, an administrative instrument that lays out the management guidelines, objectives and measures needed to guarantee achieving and/or maintaining the proper conservation of habitats and species of community interest in Cantabria.
Learn More

Monitoring the effects of global change in European Peaks National Park (PNPE)

The assessment of the effects of global change on aquatic ecosystems of the national park started in 2012 and continued with several projects (CENTINELA, BIOGLOB and MONITOREA) providing a long-term monitoring program. This program is essential to unravel the effects of global change (such as land use and changing climate conditions) on the aquatic ecosystems of European Peaks National Park.
Know more
Access the Collected Data

iHabitat: spatial modeling of vegetation and landscape dynamics

The iHabitat research line (Modelling Landscape Patterns and Processes) of IHCantabria combines a suite of modelling tools designed for the spatial and temporal analyses of landscape patterns and processes affecting aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Mapping land cover patterns at various spatiotemporal dynamics, the interaction of vegetation and soil with water resources, the development of scenarios of landscape dynamics under global change and the valuation of ecosystem services extend the purpose of iHabitat to obtain simple answers to disentangle the multivariate relationships of complex reality.
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PUBLICATIONS

Mechtildis, C., Hendriks, J., Stoorvogel, J.J., Álvarez‐Martínez, J.M., Claessens, L., Pérez‐Silos, I. & Barquín, J. 2020
Introducing a mechanistic model in digital soil mapping to predict soil organic matter stocks in the Cantabrian region (Spain).
European Journal of Soil Science. DOI: 10.1111/ejss.13011

Estevez, E., Larrañaga, A., Alonso, C. & Barquin, J. 2020.
Effects of changes in food resources due to variations in forest cover on stream macroinvertebrate community size structure.Aquatic Sciences. DOI: 10.1007/s00027-020-0713-5

González‐Ferreras, A.M., Bertuzzo, E., Barquín, J., Carraro, L., Alonso, C. & Rinaldo, A. 2019
Effects of altered river network connectivity on the distribution of Salmo trutta: Insights from a metapopulation model
Freshwater Biology. DOI: 10.1111/fwb.13379

Pérez‐Silos, I., Álvarez‐Martínez, J.M. & Barquín, J. 2019.
Modelling riparian forest distribution and composition to entire river networks
Applied Vegetation Science. DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12458

Estevez, E., Álvarez‐Martínez, J.M., Alvarez-Cabria, M., Robinson, C.T., Battin, T.J., Barquín, J. 2019.
Catchment land cover influences macroinvertebrate food‐web structure and energy flow pathways in mountain streams
Freshwater Biology. DOI: 10.1111/fwb.13327

Belmar, O., Booker, D.J., Álvarez‐Cabria, J.M., Peñas, F.J., Barquín, J. 2019
Modelling physical characteristics of river habitats
River Research and Applications. DOI: 10.1002/rra.3456

Rodríguez-Castillo, T., Estévez, E., González-Ferreras, A.M. & Barquín, J. 2020
Estimating ecosystem metabolism to entire river networks.
Ecosystems. DOI: 10.1007/s10021-018-0311-8

Peñas, F.J. & Barquin, J. 2019
Assessment of large-scale patterns of hydrological alteration caused by dams
Journal of Hydrology. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.03.056

Estévez, E., Rodríguez-Castillo, T., González-Ferreras, A.M., Cañedo-Argüelles, M. & Barquín, J. 2019.
Drivers of spatio-temporal patterns of salinity in Spanish rivers: a nationwide assessment
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2018.0022

Álvarez-Martínez, J.M., Silió-Calzada, A. & Barquín, J. 2018.
Can training data counteract topographic effects in supervised image classification? A sensitivity analysis in the Cantabrian Mountains (Spain)
International Journal of Remote Sensing. DOI: 10.1080/01431161.2018.1489163

Álvarez-Martínez, J.M., Jiménez-Alfaro, B., Barquín, J., Ondiviela, B., Recio, M., Silió-Calzada, A., Juanes, J.A. 2018.
Modelling the area of occupancy of habitat types with remote sensing
Methods in Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1111/2041-210X.12925.

Barquin, J., Alvarez-Martinez, J.M, Jimenez-Alfaro, B., Garcia, D.I., Vieites, D., Serrano, E., Gonzalez-Diez, A., Tejon, S., de Luis Calabuig, E., Taboada, A., Purroy, F.J., Del Jesus, M., Naves, J., Fernandez-Gil, A., Serdio, A., Lucio, A.J., Suarez, R. & Araujo. J. 2018.
The Integration of knowledge about the Cantabrian Cordillera: towards an inter-regional observatory of global change.
Ecosistemas. DOI: 10.7818/ECOS.1422

Peñas, F.J. & Barquin, J. 2018.
A comparison of modeling techniques to predict hydrological indices in ungauged rivers.
Limnetica. DOI: 10.23818/limn.37.12

Silio-Calzada, A., Barquín, J., Huszar, V.L.M., Mazzeo, NM., Méndez, F., Alvarez-Martinez, J.M. & Barquin, J. 2017.
Long-term dynamics of a floodplain shallow lake in the Pantanal wetland: Is it all about climate?
Science of the Total Environment. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.06.183

TEAM

José Barquín

José Barquín

Head of Continental Ecosystems Group

Mario álvarez

Mario álvarez

Technologist

Jose Manuel álvarez

Jose Manuel álvarez

Technologist

Amaia Angulo

Amaia Angulo

Researcher

Elena Bustillo

Elena Bustillo

Researcher

Laura Concostrina

Laura Concostrina

Researcher

Alejandra Goldenberg

Alejandra Goldenberg

Technologist

alexia maría González

alexia maría González

Technologist

Gonzalo Hernández

Gonzalo Hernández

Technologist

María Cª Morán

María Cª Morán

Researcher

Francisco Peñas

Francisco Peñas

Researcher

Fernando Rodríguez

Fernando Rodríguez

Technologist

ANA SILIÓ

ANA SILIÓ

Researcher

PREDOCTORAL RESEARCHERS

Thi Binh Minh Hoang

Thi Binh Minh Hoang

Predoctoral researcher

ignacio pérez

ignacio pérez

Predoctoral researcher

Cassia Rocha

Cassia Rocha

Predoctoral researcher