Fairy shrimps (Anostraca) live in temporary waters. Dominant among their predators are aquatic insects, especially diving beetles (Dytiscidae). Mastication of the eggs of the fairy shrimp Branchipus schaefferi and their passage through the digestive tract of smaller beetles, like Ilybius fenestratus, has a positive effect on hatching afterwards. Dytiscidae could be important vectors for aerial dispersal of diaspores among ponds which are not directly connected to a stream channel. Such long-distance dispersal can be of critical importance for population survival and gene flow among communities living in temporary habitats.
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Vol. 29 • No. 2