The habitat templet approach was used in a scale-sensitive bioindicator assessment for the ecological integrity of riverbanks and for specific responses to river management. Ground beetle habitat templets were derived from a catchment-scale sampling, integrating the overall variety of bank types. This coarse-filter analysis was integrated in the reach-scale fine-filtering approaches of community responses to habitat integrity and river management impacts. Higher species diversity was associated with the higher heterogeneity in bank habitats of the un-navigable river reaches. The abundant presence of habitat specialists in the riverbank zone allows a habitat integrity assessment based on the habitat templet indicator species. Significant responses were detected for channel morphology in the width-to-depth ratio and for hydrological regime in peak frequency and peak velocity, enabling the development of evaluation methods for the impact assessment of river management and flood protection strategies. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.