Ecological characteristics of plankton and aquatic vegetation in Lake Qiluhu

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Investigations of the phytoplankton, zooplankton, zoobenthos and aquatic vegetation in Lake Qiluhu were carried out in February, 2009. Over the whole lake, 13 sampling sites were set up for the analysis of phytoplankton and zooplankton, and 22 profiles for the collection of macrophytes and zoobenthos. In the survey, 7 phyla, 65 algae species were identified. The average abundance of phytoplankton was 7.16 × 108 cells/L, and the dominant specie was Limnothrix redekei. No obvious surface accumulation of algae was detected. The concentration of Chlorophyll a ranged from 85 to 101 μg/L, and the average value was 93 μg/L. Nineteen species of zooplankton were observed, including 4 species of rotifers, 6 species of cladocerans and 9 species of copepods. Copepods were the dominant species, their abundance reaching 68%, whilst Cladocerans took second place with an abundance proportion of 28%. Six species of submerged vegetation were identified: Potamogeton Pectinatus, Myriophyllum, Elodea Canadensis, Ceratophyllum demersum and Potamogeton crispus. Amongst them, the dominant vegetation was P. Pectinatus, the biomass of which was up to 63% of the total biomass. Emerged macrophytes were cluster distributed across the whole lake, mainly consisting of Scirpus tabernaemontani, phragmites communis and cane shoots. Unfortunately, no living zoobenthos were found at the sites. The results indicated that, in Lake Qiluhu, the abundance of phytoplankton was maintained at a high level. The ecological function of submerged vegetation was gradually being lost because of its low standing crop and coverage, and the benthic animal habitat was severely damaged.

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