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Primary productivity of the river ely south wales uk

Hydrobiologia 107(2): 141-154

Primary productivity of the river ely south wales uk

The non-tidal reaches of the River Ely, South Wales, were studied from Oct. 1979 to Oct. 1980. The seasonal variations of the chlorophyll a content of the phytoplankton was unimodal with 1 maximum in May and a minimum in Dec. The chlorophyll a content varied from 0.277-41.259 mg m-3. The primary productivity showed a bimodal seasonal distribution with 2 maxima in May and Sept. and lower values throughout the remainder of the year, particularly in winter. The value for the primary productivity varied from 0.269-24.302 mg C m-3 h-1. A positive correlation was obtained between chlorophyll a content and a primary productivity. The seasonal distribution of the dominant algal species and the saprobity of the River Ely were also studied. The diatom species almost showed a similar seasonal periodicity. Their concentrations were low during the winter months and high during most of the spring and summer months. Many of the dominant diatom species found in the phytoplankton populations were considered by the other authors as either saprobic (Nitzchia palea) or as inhabitants of eutrophic waters (Gomphonema paruvulm, Navicula cryptocephala and Synedra ulna). Chlamydomonas spp. were the most abundant green algae followed by Chlorella vulgaris. The effect of sewage effluent disposal and cattle excreta at 3 of the sampling sites might partly explain the presence of high Chlamydomonas spp. populations at those sites. Physical factors (low flow rates, high transparency and water temperature) and organic pollution at some sampling sites seemed to play an important role in increasing the number of algal species during spring and summer. The non-tidal reaches of the River Ely were .beta.-mesosaprobic above and below Station 5 and .alpha.-mesosaprobic at the latter station; thus, the river can be considered polluted at Station 5 and mildly polluted at the others.

Accession: 006184316

DOI: 10.1007/bf00017429

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