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Sample records for adjacent aquatic ecosystems

  1. AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS,

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aquatic ecosystems are a vital part of the urban water cycle (and of urban areas more broadly), and, if healthy, provide a range of goods and services valued by humans (Meyer 1997). For example, aquatic ecosystems (e.g., rivers, lakes, wetlands) provide potable water, food resou...

  2. Initial Impacts of the Mount Polley Tailings Pond Breach on Adjacent Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petticrew, Ellen; Gantner, Nikolaus; Albers, Sam; Owens, Philip

    2015-04-01

    On August 4th 2014, the Mount Polley Tailings pond breach near Likely, B.C., released approximately 24 million cubic metres of tailings material into Polley Lake, Hazeltine Creek and Quesnel Lake. The discharge scoured and eroded a swath of soil and sediment delivering an unknown amount of metals and sediment into this tributary ecosystem of the Fraser River. Subsequent efforts by the mine operator to remediate by pumping tailings water from Polley Lake into Hazeltine Creek, which flows into Quesnel Lake, resulted in additional and continuous release of unknown volumes of contaminated water and sediments into the watershed. Heavy metals (e.g., selenium, copper, or mercury) reported as stored in the tailings pond entered the downstream aquatic environment and have been monitored in the water column of Quesnel Lake since August. These contaminants are likely particle-bound and thus subject to transport over long distances without appreciable degradation, resulting in the potential for chronic exposures and associated toxicological effects in exposed biota. While significant dilution is expected during aquatic transport, and the resulting concentrations in the water will likely be low, concentrations in exposed biota may become of concern over time. Metals such as mercury and selenium undergo bioaccumulation and biomagnification, once incorporated into the food chain/web. Thus, even small concentrations of such contaminants in water can lead to greater concentrations (~100 fold) in top predators. Over time, our predictions are that food web transfer will lead to an increase in concentrations from water (1-2 years)->invertebrates (1-2 yrs) ->fishes (2-5 yrs). Pacific salmon travel great distances in this watershed and may be exposed to contaminated water during their migrations. Resident species will be exposed to the contaminated waters and sediments in the study lakes year round. Little or no background/baseline data for metals in biota from Quesnel Lake exists

  3. Microplastic in Aquatic Ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Ivleva, Natalia P; Wiesheu, Alexandra C; Niessner, Reinhard

    2017-02-06

    The contamination of marine and freshwater ecosystems with plastic, and especially with microplastic (MP), is a global ecological problem of increasing scientific concern. This has stimulated a great deal of research on the occurrence of MP, interaction of MP with chemical pollutants, the uptake of MP by aquatic organisms, and the resulting (negative) impact of MP. Herein, we review the major issues of MP in aquatic environments, with the principal aims 1) to characterize the methods applied for MP analysis (including sampling, processing, identification and quantification), indicate the most reliable techniques, and discuss the required further improvements; 2) to estimate the abundance of MP in marine/freshwater ecosystems and clarify the problems that hamper the comparability of such results; and 3) to summarize the existing literature on the uptake of MP by living organisms. Finally, we identify knowledge gaps, suggest possible strategies to assess environmental risks arising from MP, and discuss prospects to minimize MP abundance in aquatic ecosystems.

  4. Nitrogen in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rabalais, Nancy N

    2002-03-01

    Aquatic ecosystems respond variably to nutrient enrichment and altered nutrient ratios, along a continuum from fresh water through estuarine, coastal, and marine systems. Although phosphorus is considered the limiting nutrient for phytoplankton production in freshwater systems, the effects of atmospheric nitrogen and its contribution to acidification of fresh waters can be detrimental. Within the estuarine to coastal continuum, multiple nutrient limitations occur among nitrogen, phosphorus, and silicon along the salinity gradient and by season, but nitrogen is generally considered the primary limiting nutrient for phytoplankton biomass accumulation. There are well-established, but nonlinear, positive relationships among nitrogen and phosphorus flux, phytoplankton primary production, and fisheries yield. There are thresholds, however, where the load of nutrients to estuarine, coastal and marine systems exceeds the capacity for assimilation of nutrient-enhanced production, and water-quality degradation occurs. Impacts can include noxious and toxic algal blooms, increased turbidity with a subsequent loss of submerged aquatic vegetation, oxygen deficiency, disruption of ecosystem functioning, loss of habitat, loss of biodiversity, shifts in food webs, and loss of harvestable fisheries.

  5. Chemical contamination in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Iwata, Hisato; Kim, Eun-Young; Yamauchi, Masanobu; Inoue, Suguru; Agusa, Tetsuro; Tanabe, Shinsuke

    2007-03-01

    The 21st Century's Center of Excellence (COE) Program "Coastal Marine Environmental Research" in Ehime University, funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Government of Japan, started its activities in October 2002. One of the core projects of the COE Program in Ehime University is "studies on environmental behavior of hazardous chemicals and their toxic effects on wildlife". This core project deals with studies of the local and global distribution of environmental contaminants in aquatic ecosystems, retrospective analysis of such chemicals, their toxicokinetics in humans and wildlife, molecular mechanisms to determine species-specific reactions, and sensitivity of chemically induced effects, and with the development of methodology for risk assessment for the conservation of ecological and species diversity. This presentation describes our recent achievements of this project, including research on contamination by arsenic and organohalogen pollutants in the Mekong River basin and molecular mechanisms of morphologic deformities in dioxin-exposed red seabream (Pagrus major) embryos. We established the Environmental Specimen Bank (es-BANK) in Ehime University in 2004, archiving approximately 100000 cryogenic samples containing tissues of wildlife and humans that have been collected for the past 40 years. The CMES homepage offers details of samples through online database retrieval. The es-BANK facility was in operation by the end of 2005.

  6. Systems and Cycles: Learning about Aquatic Ecosystems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hmelo-Silver, Cindy E.; Jordan, Rebecca; Eberbach, Catherine; Rugaber, Spencer; Goel, Ashok

    2011-01-01

    In this research, the authors present both the design and preliminary testing of a technology-intensive classroom intervention designed to support middle schools students' understanding of an aquatic ecosystem. The goals of their intervention are to help learners develop deep understanding of ecosystems and to use tools that make the relationships…

  7. PAHS IN THE LAKE MICHIGAN AQUATIC ECOSYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    PAHs in the Lake Michigan Aquatic Ecosystem. Fernandez, JD*, Burkhard, LP, Cook, PM, Nichols, JW, Mid-Continent Ecology Division, U.S. EPA, Duluth MN. In this study, we are investigating the accumulation of PAHs in the Lake Michigan food web. Focusing on EPA's 16 "Priority Po...

  8. Ship canals and aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Aron, William I.; Smith, Stanford H.

    1971-01-01

    Through a combination of ecosystem homeostasis and the perversity of man and nature, oftentimes the significant biological changes effected by environmental modifications are not detected until long after the initial change has taken place. The immediate impact, which may range from the spectacular to the undetectable, is a deceptive measure of the long-term and often more important changes in the ecosystem. Two major engineering achievements illustrate this premise: (i) construction of the Erie Canal, which provided access from the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes, and the Welland Canal, which bypasses the block between Lakes Ontario and Erie created by Niagara Falls (Fig. 1), and (ii) construction of the Suez Canal between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.

  9. Mercury contamination of aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Krabbenhoft, David P.; Rickert, David A.

    1995-01-01

    Mercury has been well known as an environmental pollutant for several decades. As early as the 1950's it was established that emissions of mercury to the environment could have serious effects on human health. These early studies demonstrated that fish and other wildlife from various ecosystems commonly attain mercury levels of toxicological concern when directly affected by mercury-containing emissions from human-related activities. Human health concerns arise when fish and wildlife from these ecosystems are consumed by humans. During the past decade, a new trend has emerged with regard to mercury pollution. Investigations initiated in the late 1980's in the northern-tier states of the U.S., Canada, and Nordic countries found that fish, mainly from nutrient-poor lakes and often in very remote areas, commonly have high levels of mercury. More recent fish sampling surveys in other regions of the U.S. have shown widespread mercury contamination in streams, wet-lands, reservoirs, and lakes. To date, 33 states have issued fish consumption advisories because of mercury contamination. These continental to global scale occurrences of mercury contamination cannot be linked to individual emissions of mercury, but instead are due to widespread air pollution. When scientists measure mercury levels in air and surface water, however, the observed levels are extraordinarily low. In fact, scientists have to take extreme precautions to avoid direct contact with water samples or sample containers, to avert sample contamination (Fig 3). Herein lies an apparent discrepancy: Why do fish from some remote areas have elevated mercury concentrations, when contamination levels in the environment are so low?

  10. Pulses, linkages, and boundaries of coupled aquatic-terrestrial ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tockner, K.

    2009-04-01

    Riverine floodplains are linked ecosystems where terrestrial and aquatic habitats overlap, creating a zone where they interact, the aquatic-terrestrial interface. The interface or boundary between aquatic and terrestrial habitats is an area of transition, contact or separation; and connectivity between these habitats may be defined as the ease with which organisms, matter or energy traverse these boundaries. Coupling of aquatic and terrestrial systems generates intertwining food webs, and we may predict that coupled systems are more productive than separated ones. For example, riparian consumers (aquatic and terrestrial) have alternative prey items external to their respective habitats. Such subsidized assemblages occupy a significant higher trophic position than assemblages in unsubsidized areas. Further, cross-habitat linkages are often pulsed; and even small pulses of a driver (e.g. short-term increases in flow) can cause major resource pulses (i.e. emerging aquatic insects) that control the recipient community. For example, short-term additions of resources, simulating pulsed inputs of aquatic food to terrestrial systems, suggest that due to resource partitioning and temporal separation among riparian arthropod taxa the resource flux from the river to the riparian zone increases with increasing riparian consumer diversity. I will discuss the multiple transfer and transformation processes of matter and organisms across aquatic-terrestrial habitats. Key landscape elements along river corridors are vegetated islands that function as instream riparian areas. Results from Central European rivers demonstrate that islands are in general more natural than fringing riparian areas, contribute substantially to total ecotone length, and create diverse habitats in the aquatic and terrestrial realm. In braided rivers, vegetated islands are highly productive landscape elements compared to the adjacent aquatic area. However, aquatic habitats exhibit a much higher decomposition

  11. Deer Island Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Project

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-07-01

    http://geology.deq.state.ms.us/coastal/NOAA_DATA/ Publications/Presentations/ Harrison /MAS_DeerIslandGeology_Pres.pdf. Accessed 2 February 2013. U.S... Harrison County, Mississippi. USACE, Mobile District (USACE SAM). 2010. Post-Authorization Change Report - Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration, Deer Island... Harrison County, Mississippi. USACE, Mobile District (USACE SAM). 2013. Design Documentation Report – Deer Island Breach Repair and Planting, Harrison County, Mississippi.

  12. Effective Best Management Practices for Nitrogen Removal in Aquatic Ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    Elevated nitrate levels in streams and groundwater are detrimental to human and ecosystem health. The Ground Water and Ecosystems Restoration Division (GWERD) of the USEPA investigates best management practices (BMP’s) that enhance nitrogen removal in aquatic ecosystems througho...

  13. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1988-01-01

    Natural isotope abundances to trace major pathways of energy flow to consumers in Imnavait Creek and the tundra ecosystem of the R4D watershed with comparative work in the coastal tundra. Our overall goals are to a determine if carbon is accumulating in upland and coastal tundra; determine the role of eroded peat carbon in the aquatic ecosystem; and to determine the distribution of carbon and nitrogen isotopes in the tundra-pond ecosystem to establish the feasibility of using natural differences as tracers. Past work on fishes, birds, and the prey species of insects and aquatic crustaceans has shown that peat carbon is very important in the energy supply supporting the food webs over the course of the year. Obligate freshwater fishes from the coastal lakes and Colville River have been shown to contain up to 60 percent peat carbon at the end of the winter season. In contrast, migratory shorebirds and passerines contained much smaller radiocarbon abundances in summer, indicating a major shift to recent in situ primary production in pond and stream ecosystems in summer months. For the past two years, we have narrowed our focus to the processes supplying carbon to the beaded stream system at MS-117 and have concentrated on determining the transfer and accumulation rates of carbon in the watershed.

  14. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1988-12-31

    Natural isotope abundances to trace major pathways of energy flow to consumers in Imnavait Creek and the tundra ecosystem of the R4D watershed with comparative work in the coastal tundra. Our overall goals are to a determine if carbon is accumulating in upland and coastal tundra; determine the role of eroded peat carbon in the aquatic ecosystem; and to determine the distribution of carbon and nitrogen isotopes in the tundra-pond ecosystem to establish the feasibility of using natural differences as tracers. Past work on fishes, birds, and the prey species of insects and aquatic crustaceans has shown that peat carbon is very important in the energy supply supporting the food webs over the course of the year. Obligate freshwater fishes from the coastal lakes and Colville River have been shown to contain up to 60 percent peat carbon at the end of the winter season. In contrast, migratory shorebirds and passerines contained much smaller radiocarbon abundances in summer, indicating a major shift to recent in situ primary production in pond and stream ecosystems in summer months. For the past two years, we have narrowed our focus to the processes supplying carbon to the beaded stream system at MS-117 and have concentrated on determining the transfer and accumulation rates of carbon in the watershed.

  15. Aquatic Plants and Animals as Ecosystem Engineers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wotton, R. S.

    2005-05-01

    Studies on aquatic plants and animals focus on population dynamics, the structure of communities and the part played by organisms in food webs and other ecosystem processes. As Lawton and Jones point out in "Linking Species and Ecosystems", less attention is given to the role of organisms as ecosystem engineers, modifying the environment in which they live. Yet plants can have a profound effect on their surroundings, altering flow patterns and trapping large amounts of organic and inorganic material. Animals also affect aquatic ecosystems in many ways, both in building structures such as tubes and shelters, and in their feeding. For example, detritus feeders often produce large numbers of faecal pellets (and pseudofaeces in bivalves) and these are very different in size to the materials ingested. Pellets are deposited in masses over the bed of streams, lakes and the sea and therefore effect a translocation of nutrients. The action of plants and animals in altering their environment is likely to be a significant process in all water bodies, from both small to large scale.

  16. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1993-01-01

    This project has been using natural isotope abundances to trace major pathways of energy flow to consumers in Imnavait Creek and the tundra ecosystem of the R4D watershed with comparative work in the coastal tundra. We are processing samples collected at the R4D intensive site over the past three years and are comparing these data with similar samples collected from the coastal plain. Our approach is to determine if carbon is accumulating in upland and coastal tundra; to determine the role of eroded peat carbon in the aquatic ecosystem; and to determine the distribution of carbon and nitrogen isotopes in the tundra-pond ecosystem to establish the feasibility of using natural differences as tracers.

  17. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1993-05-01

    This project has been using natural isotope abundances to trace major pathways of energy flow to consumers in Imnavait Creek and the tundra ecosystem of the R4D watershed with comparative work in the coastal tundra. We are processing samples collected at the R4D intensive site over the past three years and are comparing these data with similar samples collected from the coastal plain. Our approach is to determine if carbon is accumulating in upland and coastal tundra; to determine the role of eroded peat carbon in the aquatic ecosystem; and to determine the distribution of carbon and nitrogen isotopes in the tundra-pond ecosystem to establish the feasibility of using natural differences as tracers.

  18. Assessment of potential aquatic herbicide impacts to California aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Siemering, Geoffrey S; Hayworth, Jennifer D; Greenfield, Ben K

    2008-10-01

    A series of legal decisions culminated in 2002 with the California State Water Resources Control Board funding the San Francisco Estuary Institute to develop and implement a 3-year monitoring program to determine the potential environmental impacts of aquatic herbicide applications. The monitoring program was intended to investigate the behavior of all aquatic pesticides in use in California, to determine potential impacts in a wide range of water-body types receiving applications, and to help regulators determine where to direct future resources. A tiered monitoring approach was developed to achieve a balance between program goals and what was practically achievable within the project time and budget constraints. Water, sediment, and biota were collected under "worst-case" scenarios in close association with herbicide applications. Applications of acrolein, copper sulfate, chelated copper, diquat dibromide, glyphosate, fluridone, triclopyr, and 2,4-D were monitored. A range of chemical analyses, toxicity tests, and bioassessments were conducted. At each site, risk quotients were calculated to determine potential impacts. For sediment-partitioning herbicides, sediment quality triad analysis was performed. Worst-case scenario monitoring and special studies showed limited short-term and no long-term toxicity directly attributable to aquatic herbicide applications. Risk quotient calculations called for additional risk characterizations; these included limited assessments for glyphosate and fluridone and more extensive risk assessments for diquat dibromide, chelated copper products, and copper sulfate. Use of surfactants in conjunction with aquatic herbicides was positively associated with greater ecosystem impacts. Results therefore warrant full risk characterization for all adjuvant compounds.

  19. Pressure and Buoyancy in Aquatic Ecosystems. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cowan, Christina E.

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module explores some of the characteristics of aquatic organisms which can be…

  20. Risk Assessment Considerations for Veterinary Medicines in Aquatic Ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    This chapter provides a critical evaluation of prospective and retrospective risk assessment approaches for veterinary medicines in aquatic ecosystems and provides recommendations for possible alternative approaches for hazard characterization.

  1. Development of resource shed delineation in aquatic ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental issues in aquatic ecosystems of high management priority involve spatially explicit phenomena that occur over vast areas. A "landscape" perspective is thus necessary, including an understanding of how ecological phenomena at a local scale are affected by physical fo...

  2. Review on environmental alterations propagating from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Ralf; Bundschuh, Mirco; Gergs, René; Brühl, Carsten A; Diehl, Dörte; Entling, Martin H; Fahse, Lorenz; Frör, Oliver; Jungkunst, Hermann F; Lorke, Andreas; Schäfer, Ralf B; Schaumann, Gabriele E; Schwenk, Klaus

    2015-12-15

    Terrestrial inputs into freshwater ecosystems are a classical field of environmental science. Resource fluxes (subsidy) from aquatic to terrestrial systems have been less studied, although they are of high ecological relevance particularly for the receiving ecosystem. These fluxes may, however, be impacted by anthropogenically driven alterations modifying structure and functioning of aquatic ecosystems. In this context, we reviewed the peer-reviewed literature for studies addressing the subsidy of terrestrial by aquatic ecosystems with special emphasis on the role that anthropogenic alterations play in this water-land coupling. Our analysis revealed a continuously increasing interest in the coupling of aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems between 1990 and 2014 (total: 661 studies), while the research domains focusing on abiotic (502 studies) and biotic (159 studies) processes are strongly separated. Approximately 35% (abiotic) and 25% (biotic) of the studies focused on the propagation of anthropogenic alterations from the aquatic to the terrestrial system. Among these studies, hydromorphological and hydrological alterations were predominantly assessed, whereas water pollution and invasive species were less frequently investigated. Less than 5% of these studies considered indirect effects in the terrestrial system e.g. via food web responses, as a result of anthropogenic alterations in aquatic ecosystems. Nonetheless, these very few publications indicate far-reaching consequences in the receiving terrestrial ecosystem. For example, bottom-up mediated responses via soil quality can cascade over plant communities up to the level of herbivorous arthropods, while top-down mediated responses via predatory spiders can cascade down to herbivorous arthropods and even plants. Overall, the current state of knowledge calls for an integrated assessment on how these interactions within terrestrial ecosystems are affected by propagation of aquatic ecosystem alterations. To fill

  3. DNA barcodes for assessment of the biological integrity of aquatic ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    Water quality regulations and aquatic ecosystem monitoring increasingly rely on direct assessments of biological integrity. Because these aquatic “bioassessments” evaluate the incidence and abundance of sensitive aquatic species, they are able to measure cumulative ecosystem eff...

  4. Comparing resource pulses in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Nowlin, Weston H; Vanni, Michael J; Yang, Louie H

    2008-03-01

    Resource pulses affect productivity and dynamics in a diversity of ecosystems, including islands, forests, streams, and lakes. Terrestrial and aquatic systems differ in food web structure and biogeochemistry; thus they may also differ in their responses to resource pulses. However, there has been a limited attempt to compare responses across ecosystem types. Here, we identify similarities and differences in the causes and consequences of resource pulses in terrestrial and aquatic systems. We propose that different patterns of food web and ecosystem structure in terrestrial and aquatic systems lead to different responses to resource pulses. Two predictions emerge from a comparison of resource pulses in the literature: (1) the bottom-up effects of resource pulses should transmit through aquatic food webs faster because of differences in the growth rates, life history, and stoichiometry of organisms in aquatic vs. terrestrial systems, and (2) the impacts of resource pulses should also persist longer in terrestrial systems because of longer generation times, the long-lived nature of many terrestrial resource pulses, and reduced top-down effects of consumers in terrestrial systems compared to aquatic systems. To examine these predictions, we use a case study of a resource pulse that affects both terrestrial and aquatic systems: the synchronous emergence of periodical cicadas (Magicicada spp.) in eastern North American forests. In general, studies that have examined the effects of periodical cicadas on terrestrial and aquatic systems support the prediction that resource pulses transmit more rapidly in aquatic systems; however, support for the prediction that resource pulse effects persist longer in terrestrial systems is equivocal. We conclude that there is a need to elucidate the indirect effects and long-term implications of resource pulses in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

  5. Endocrine-Disrupting Compounds in Aquatic Ecosystems.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are a ubiquitous issue of concern in our aquatic systems. Commonly detected EDCs include natural and synthetic hormones, surfactants, plasticizers, disinfectants, herbicides and metals. The potency of these chemicals varies substantially, as ...

  6. Restoration of aquatic ecosystems: Science, technology, and public policy

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    Aquatic ecosystems perform numerous valuable environmental functions. However, intensified industrial, commercial, and residential development in the US has led to the pollution of surface waters by fertilizers, insecticides, motor oil, toxic landfill leachates, and feedlot wastes while at the same time more water usage has lead to less water for dilution of wastes. Increased sediments from construction, agriculture and forestry has also heavily damaged aquatic ecosystems. Restorating aquatic ecosystems may be accomplished in stages, and in certain situations, partial ecological restoration may be the operant management goal, providing significant ecological benefits even though full restoration is not attained. A large scale aquatic ecosystem restoration program in the US should do as follows: (1) correct nonpoint source pollution problems; (2) arrest the decline of wildlife populations; (3) restore all types of wildlife habitats with priority to endangered species habitat. A national aquatic ecosystem strategy is recommended including four elements: (1) national restoration goals and assessment strategies for each ecoregion; (2) principles for priority setting and decision making; (3) policy and program redesign; (4) Innovation in financing and use of land and water markets. Major sections of the report discuss the following areas in detail: Overview of long-term, large scale coordinated restoration-planning, evaluating, and monitoring; Lakes (largest section); Rivers and Stream; and Wetlands.

  7. Watershed geomorphology modifies the temperature sensitivity of aquatic ecosystem metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jankowski, K. J.; Schindler, D.

    2015-12-01

    How carbon cycles are regulated by temperature remains a substantial uncertainty in our understanding of how watersheds will respond to ongoing climate change. Aquatic ecosystems are significant components of carbon flux to the atmosphere and ocean, yet we have limited understanding of how changing thermal regimes will alter rates of ecosystem metabolic processes, and, therefore, aquatic contributions to carbon cycles at watershed to global scales. Watershed geomorphology controls the landscape-scale distribution of organic material that can form the metabolic base of aquatic ecosystems, which will likely affect the temperature sensitivity of aquatic ecosystem metabolism. Across 23 streams in a boreal river basin, we estimated how temperature sensitivity of ecosystem respiration (ER), an important component of the aquatic C cycle, varied among streams with different watershed characteristics. We found that geomorphic conditions imposed strong ultimate controls on temperature sensitivity: ER in streams draining flat watersheds was much more sensitive to temperature than streams draining steeper watersheds. Further, we show that the link between watershed geomorphology and temperature sensitivity was related to changes in the quality of carbon substrates across the gradient in watershed slope. These results suggest that geomorphic conditions will ultimately control how carbon processing responds to warming climate, thereby affecting carbon transport and storage, and likely food web responses, in river networks.

  8. Nutrient sources and transport along urban flowpaths to aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finlay, J. C.; Janke, B.; Baker, L. A.; Hobbie, S. E.; Nidzgorski, D.; Sterner, R.; Wilson, B. N.

    2012-12-01

    Water quality of urban freshwater ecosystems is widely impaired by eutrophication, with little recent improvement and much potential for further degradation due to urban expansion and intensification. Despite the degradation of water quality in urban streams and lakes and adjacent coastal areas, relatively little is known about the relative importance of specific nutrient sources and the processes that regulate their movement across highly modified land-water interfaces. To better understand the nutrient sources and cycling that affect aquatic ecosystems, we assess nutrient movement through urban drainage networks in St. Paul, Minnesota. Nutrient concentrations and flux in stormwater at six intensively monitored sites show consistent seasonal patterns, with peaks in total nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) in the late spring. Trees contributed to nutrient movement via litterfall and throughfall to impervious surfaces, with peaks in inputs that corresponded to stormwater nutrient patterns. Despite runoff generated primarily from impervious surfaces, organic carbon and nitrogen concentrations were high, with organic N accounting for >80% of stormwater N loading. Together, these data suggested an important role for urban tree canopies in nutrient mobilization in stormwater. Base flow, present in larger storm drains and buried streams, results primarily from groundwater seepage and from outflow of surface water connected to drains. Base flow contributed significantly to nutrient export, particularly for N (33 to 68% of warm season export) but also for P (8 to 34%). Sites with upstream hydrologic connections to lakes and remnant above-ground stream reaches had higher baseflow organic carbon and P, and reduced N concentrations compared to sites dominated by groundwater. Together, these data show that the characteristics of urban vegetation and the nature of human alterations to hydrologic connections are dominant features influencing the form and amount of nutrient movement

  9. Geologic processes influence the effects of mining on aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmidt, Travis S.; Clements, William H.; Wanty, Richard B.; Verplanck, Philip L.; Church, Stanley E.; San Juan, Carma A.; Fey, David L.; Rockwell, Barnaby W.; DeWitt, Ed H.; Klein, Terry L.

    2012-01-01

    Geologic processes strongly influence water and sediment quality in aquatic ecosystems but rarely are geologic principles incorporated into routine biomonitoring studies. We test if elevated concentrations of metals in water and sediment are restricted to streams downstream of mines or areas that may discharge mine wastes. We surveyed 198 catchments classified as “historically mined” or “unmined,” and based on mineral-deposit criteria, to determine whether water and sediment quality were influenced by naturally occurring mineralized rock, by historical mining, or by a combination of both. By accounting for different geologic sources of metals to the environment, we were able to distinguish aquatic ecosystems limited by metals derived from natural processes from those due to mining. Elevated concentrations of metals in water and sediment were not restricted to mined catchments; depauperate aquatic communities were found in unmined catchments. The type and intensity of hydrothermal alteration and the mineral deposit type were important determinants of water and sediment quality as well as the aquatic community in both mined and unmined catchments. This study distinguished the effects of different rock types and geologic sources of metals on ecosystems by incorporating basic geologic processes into reference and baseline site selection, resulting in a refined assessment. Our results indicate that biomonitoring studies should account for natural sources of metals in some geologic environments as contributors to the effect of mines on aquatic ecosystems, recognizing that in mining-impacted drainages there may have been high pre-mining background metal concentrations.

  10. Geologic processes influence the effects of mining on aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Travis S; Clements, William H; Wanty, Richard B; Verplanck, Philip L; Church, Stanley E; San Juan, Carma A; Fey, David L; Rockwell, Barnaby W; DeWitt, Ed H; Klein, Terry L

    2012-04-01

    Geologic processes strongly influence water and sediment quality in aquatic ecosystems but rarely are geologic principles incorporated into routine biomonitoring studies. We test if elevated concentrations of metals in water and sediment are restricted to streams downstream of mines or areas that may discharge mine wastes. We surveyed 198 catchments classified as "historically mined" or "unmined," and based on mineral-deposit criteria, to determine whether water and sediment quality were influenced by naturally occurring mineralized rock, by historical mining, or by a combination of both. By accounting for different geologic sources of metals to the environment, we were able to distinguish aquatic ecosystems limited by metals derived from natural processes from those due to mining. Elevated concentrations of metals in water and sediment were not restricted to mined catchments; depauperate aquatic communities were found in unmined catchments. The type and intensity of hydrothermal alteration and the mineral deposit type were important determinants of water and sediment quality as well as the aquatic community in both mined and unmined catchments. This study distinguished the effects of different rock types and geologic sources of metals on ecosystems by incorporating basic geologic processes into reference and baseline site selection, resulting in a refined assessment. Our results indicate that biomonitoring studies should account for natural sources of metals in some geologic environments as contributors to the effect of mines on aquatic ecosystems, recognizing that in mining-impacted drainages there may have been high pre-mining background metal concentrations.

  11. Are aliens threatening European aquatic coastal ecosystems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reise, Karsten; Olenin, Sergej; Thieltges, David W.

    2006-05-01

    Inshore waters of European coasts have accumulated a high share of non-indigenous species, where a changeable palaeoenvironment has caused low diversity in indigenous biota. Also strongly transformed modern coastal ecosystems seem to assimilate whatever species have been introduced and tolerate the physical regime. Adding non-native species does not have any directional predetermined effects on recipient coastal ecosystems. The status of being a non-native rather refers to a position in evolutionary history than qualify as an ecological category with distinct and consistent properties. Effects of invaders vary between habitats and with the phase of invasion and also with shifting ambient conditions. Although aliens accelerate change in European coastal biota, we found no evidence that they generally impair biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. More often, invaders expand ecosystem functioning by adding new ecological traits, intensifying existing ones and increasing functional redundancy.

  12. A model for an aquatic ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiao, Han Li; Venturino, Ezio

    2016-06-01

    An ecosystem made of nutrients, plants, detritus and dissolved oxygen is presented. Its equilibria are established. Sufficient conditions for the existence of the coexistence equilibrium are derived and its feasibility is discussed in every detail.

  13. Aquatic ecosystem response to timber harvesting for the purpose of restoring aspen.

    PubMed

    Jones, Bobette E; Krupa, Monika; Tate, Kenneth W

    2013-01-01

    The removal of conifers through commercial timber harvesting has been successful in restoring aspen, however many aspen stands are located near streams, and there are concerns about potential aquatic ecosystem impairment. We examined the effects of management-scale conifer removal from aspen stands located adjacent to streams on water quality, solar radiation, canopy cover, temperature, aquatic macroinvertebrates, and soil moisture. This 8-year study (2003-2010) involved two projects located in Lassen National Forest. The Pine-Bogard Project consisted of three treatments adjacent to Pine and Bogard Creeks: (i) Phase 1 in January 2004, (ii) Phase 2 in August 2005, and (iii) Phase 3 in January 2008. The Bailey Project consisted of one treatment adjacent to Bailey Creek in September 2006. Treatments involved whole tree removal using track-laying harvesters and rubber tire skidders. More than 80% of all samples analyzed for NO₃-N, NH₄-N, and PO₄-P at Pine, Bogard, and Bailey Creeks were below the detection limit, with the exception of naturally elevated PO₄-P in Bogard Creek. All nutrient concentrations (NO₃-N, NH₄-N, PO₄-P, K, and SO₄-S) showed little variation within streams and across years. Turbidity and TSS exhibited annual variation, but there was no significant increase in the difference between upstream and downstream turbidity and TSS levels. There was a significant decrease in stream canopy cover and increase in the potential fraction of solar radiation reaching the streams in response to the Pine-Bogard Phase 3 and Bailey treatments; however, there was no corresponding increase in stream temperatures. Macroinvertebrate metrics indicated healthy aquatic ecosystem conditions throughout the course of the study. Lastly, the removal of vegetation significantly increased soil moisture in treated stands relative to untreated stands. These results indicate that, with careful planning and implementation of site-specific best management practices

  14. Aquatic Ecosystem Response to Timber Harvesting for the Purpose of Restoring Aspen

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Bobette E.; Krupa, Monika; Tate, Kenneth W.

    2013-01-01

    The removal of conifers through commercial timber harvesting has been successful in restoring aspen, however many aspen stands are located near streams, and there are concerns about potential aquatic ecosystem impairment. We examined the effects of management-scale conifer removal from aspen stands located adjacent to streams on water quality, solar radiation, canopy cover, temperature, aquatic macroinvertebrates, and soil moisture. This 8-year study (2003–2010) involved two projects located in Lassen National Forest. The Pine-Bogard Project consisted of three treatments adjacent to Pine and Bogard Creeks: (i) Phase 1 in January 2004, (ii) Phase 2 in August 2005, and (iii) Phase 3 in January 2008. The Bailey Project consisted of one treatment adjacent to Bailey Creek in September 2006. Treatments involved whole tree removal using track-laying harvesters and rubber tire skidders. More than 80% of all samples analyzed for NO3-N, NH4-N, and PO4-P at Pine, Bogard, and Bailey Creeks were below the detection limit, with the exception of naturally elevated PO4-P in Bogard Creek. All nutrient concentrations (NO3-N, NH4-N, PO4-P, K, and SO4-S) showed little variation within streams and across years. Turbidity and TSS exhibited annual variation, but there was no significant increase in the difference between upstream and downstream turbidity and TSS levels. There was a significant decrease in stream canopy cover and increase in the potential fraction of solar radiation reaching the streams in response to the Pine-Bogard Phase 3 and Bailey treatments; however, there was no corresponding increase in stream temperatures. Macroinvertebrate metrics indicated healthy aquatic ecosystem conditions throughout the course of the study. Lastly, the removal of vegetation significantly increased soil moisture in treated stands relative to untreated stands. These results indicate that, with careful planning and implementation of site-specific best management practices, conifer removal to

  15. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1983-12-31

    This component of the terrestrial-aquatic interaction group seeks to use the natural stable carbon isotope ratios and radiocarbon abundances to trace the movement of photosynthate from the terrestrial environment to the stream system at MS-117. In addition to estimating the total flux, we will also attempt to describe the relative fractions derived from modern primary production and that derived from delayed inputs of eroded peat. We will also seek to determine the coupling efficiency of these energy sources to the invertebrate faunal populations in the tundra soils and streams.

  16. Energy flow in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1983-01-01

    This component of the terrestrial-aquatic interaction group seeks to use the natural stable carbon isotope ratios and radiocarbon abundances to trace the movement of photosynthate from the terrestrial environment to the stream system at MS-117. In addition to estimating the total flux, we will also attempt to describe the relative fractions derived from modern primary production and that derived from delayed inputs of eroded peat. We will also seek to determine the coupling efficiency of these energy sources to the invertebrate faunal populations in the tundra soils and streams.

  17. BIOGEOCHEMISTRY OF CHLORINATED ORGANIC CONTAMINANTS IN AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Over the last several years we have conducted both laboratory and field studies to develop a better understanding of the movement of chlorinated organic compounds through aquatic ecosystems, with special emphasis on the differential movement of these compounds due to physical/che...

  18. Developing an Interdisciplinary Curriculum Framework for Aquatic-Ecosystem Modeling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saito, Laurel; Segale, Heather M.; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Jenkins, Stephen H.

    2007-01-01

    This paper presents results from a July 2005 workshop and course aimed at developing an interdisciplinary course on modeling aquatic ecosystems that will provide the next generation of practitioners with critical skills for which formal training is presently lacking. Five different course models were evaluated: (1) fundamentals/general principles…

  19. AQUATIC ECOSYSTEM MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT ACROSS SCALES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The mission of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) is to protect human health and the environment. As part of the Office of Research and Development within the USEPA, the Ecosystems Research Branch of the National Exposure Research Laboratory, located in Ci...

  20. Measurement of undisturbed di-nitrogen emissions from aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Shuping, Clough, Timothy, Lou, Jiafa; Hu, Chunsheng; Oenema, Oene; Wrage-Mönnig, Nicole; Zhang, Yuming

    2016-04-01

    Increased production of reactive nitrogen (Nr) from atmospheric di-nitrogen (N2) during the last century has greatly contributed to increased food production1-4. However, enriching the biosphere with Nr through N fertilizer production, combustion, and biological N2 fixation has also caused a series of negative effects on global ecosystems 5,6, especially aquatic ecosystems7. The main pathway converting Nr back into the atmospheric N2 pool is the last step of the denitrification process, i.e., the reduction of nitrous oxide (N2O) into N2 by micro-organisms7,8. Despite several attempts9,10, there is not yet an accurate, fast and direct method for measuring undisturbed N2 fluxes from denitrification in aquatic sediments at the field scale11-14. Such a method is essential to study the feedback of aquatic ecosystems to Nr inputs1,2,7. Here we show that the measurement of both N2O emission and its isotope signature can be used to infer the undisturbed N2 fluxes from aquatic ecosystems. The microbial reduction of N2O increases the natural abundance of 15N-N2O relative to 14N-N2O (δ15N-N2O). We observed linear relationships between δ15N-N2O and the logarithmic transformed N2O/(N2+N2O) emission ratios. Through independent measurements, we verified that the undisturbed N2 flux from aquatic ecosystems can be inferred from measurements of N2O emissions and the δ15N-N2O signature. Our method allows the determination of field-scale N2 fluxes from undisturbed aquatic ecosystems, and thereby allows model predictions of denitrification rates to be tested. The undisturbed N2 fluxes observed are almost one order of magnitude higher than those estimated by the traditional method, where perturbation of the system occurs, indicating that the ability of aquatic ecosystems to remove Nr may have been severely underestimated.

  1. [Energy flow in arctic aquatic ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1985-01-01

    This study is aimed at determining the major pathways of energy flow in freshwater ecosystems of the Alaskan arctic coastal plain. Selected sites for study of the processes supplying energy to streams and lakes to verify the generality of past findings will be surveyed for collection of organisms including the Colville River drainage and the lake region around Teshekpuk Lake. Specific objectives are to collect food web apex organisms (fish and birds) from a variety of sites in the coastal plain to verify descriptive models of ecosystem structure and food web pathways and to compare the utilization rates by insect larvae of fresh litter and in situ primary production relative to more refractory peaty materials through seasonal sampling for isotopic analysis.

  2. [Energy flow in arctic aquatic ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1985-12-31

    This study is aimed at determining the major pathways of energy flow in freshwater ecosystems of the Alaskan arctic coastal plain. Selected sites for study of the processes supplying energy to streams and lakes to verify the generality of past findings will be surveyed for collection of organisms including the Colville River drainage and the lake region around Teshekpuk Lake. Specific objectives are to collect food web apex organisms (fish and birds) from a variety of sites in the coastal plain to verify descriptive models of ecosystem structure and food web pathways and to compare the utilization rates by insect larvae of fresh litter and in situ primary production relative to more refractory peaty materials through seasonal sampling for isotopic analysis.

  3. A successful closed aquatic ecosystem in SZ-8 mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaoyan; Wang, Gaohong; Richter, Peter; Liu, Yongding; Schuster, Martin; Lebert, Michael

    2012-07-01

    Aquatic ecosystem is a useful means to explore complex interaction among different species, and data got from this kind of system can be used to re-constructer or bio-remedy damaged ecosystem or explore other planet, such as Mars. To deeply investigate interactions of different species in space environment, we established a closed aquatic ecosystem of 60 milliliter with Chlorella, Euglena and Bulinus. As a major oxygen producer, Euglena was put into the lower chamber. The initial concentration of Euglena was adjusted to 40000 cells per milliliter to avoid damage of high oxygen concentration to other organisms. As a secondary oxygen producer and food provider, Chlorella was put into the upper chamber together with 3 bulinus. The initial concentration of Chlorella was 3.2*105 cells per milliliter. After 17.5 days of duration, the system run well with 1 bulinus alive in the spaceflight group and all kept alive in the ground control.

  4. Herbivore regulation of plant abundance in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Wood, Kevin A; O'Hare, Matthew T; McDonald, Claire; Searle, Kate R; Daunt, Francis; Stillman, Richard A

    2017-05-01

    Herbivory is a fundamental process that controls primary producer abundance and regulates energy and nutrient flows to higher trophic levels. Despite the recent proliferation of small-scale studies on herbivore effects on aquatic plants, there remains limited understanding of the factors that control consumer regulation of vascular plants in aquatic ecosystems. Our current knowledge of the regulation of primary producers has hindered efforts to understand the structure and functioning of aquatic ecosystems, and to manage such ecosystems effectively. We conducted a global meta-analysis of the outcomes of plant-herbivore interactions using a data set comprised of 326 values from 163 studies, in order to test two mechanistic hypotheses: first, that greater negative changes in plant abundance would be associated with higher herbivore biomass densities; second, that the magnitude of changes in plant abundance would vary with herbivore taxonomic identity. We found evidence that plant abundance declined with increased herbivore density, with plants eliminated at high densities. Significant between-taxa differences in impact were detected, with insects associated with smaller reductions in plant abundance than all other taxa. Similarly, birds caused smaller reductions in plant abundance than echinoderms, fish, or molluscs. Furthermore, larger reductions in plant abundance were detected for fish relative to crustaceans. We found a positive relationship between herbivore species richness and change in plant abundance, with the strongest reductions in plant abundance reported for low herbivore species richness, suggesting that greater herbivore diversity may protect against large reductions in plant abundance. Finally, we found that herbivore-plant nativeness was a key factor affecting the magnitude of herbivore impacts on plant abundance across a wide range of species assemblages. Assemblages comprised of invasive herbivores and native plant assemblages were associated with

  5. Freshwater ecosystems and aquatic insects: a paradox in biological invasions.

    PubMed

    Fenoglio, Stefano; Bonada, Núria; Guareschi, Simone; López-Rodríguez, Manuel J; Millán, Andrés; Tierno de Figueroa, J Manuel

    2016-04-01

    Biological invasions have increased significantly in response to global change and constitute one of the major causes of biodiversity loss. Insects make up a large fraction of invasive species, in general, and freshwaters are among the most invaded ecosystems on our planet. However, even though aquatic insects dominate most inland waters, have unparalleled taxonomic diversity and occupy nearly all trophic niches, there are almost no invasive insects in freshwaters. We present some hypotheses regarding why aquatic insects are not common among aquatic invasive organisms, suggesting that it may be the result of a suite of biological, ecological and anthropogenic factors. Such specific knowledge introduces a paradox in the current scientific discussion on invasive species; therefore, a more in-depth understanding could be an invaluable aid to disentangling how and why biological invasions occur.

  6. Global ecological impacts of invasive species in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Gallardo, Belinda; Clavero, Miguel; Sánchez, Marta I; Vilà, Montserrat

    2016-01-01

    alteration). Considering the strong trophic links that characterize aquatic ecosystems, this framework is relevant to anticipate the far-reaching consequences of biological invasions on the structure and functionality of aquatic ecosystems.

  7. Aquatic ecosystem condition: The Fraser River Action Plan approach

    SciTech Connect

    Tuominen, T.; Raymond, B.; Sekela, M.; Reynoldson, T.

    1995-12-31

    A major goal of the Canadian government`s Fraser River Action Plan (FRAP) is to clean up existing pollution problems in the Fraser River Basin. In support of this goal, the Environmental Quality Assessment Program is assessing the quality of the aquatic environment, particularly with respect to contaminants. The program, conducted from 1993 to 1998, is to establish a baseline condition for the aquatic ecosystem against which the success of clean up efforts can be measured. The FRAP approach is to use a combination of contaminant exposure or stressor indicators and organism ``effects`` indicators. The focus is on three components of the aquatic ecosystem: (1) bed sediment, (2) resident fish and (3) benthos. A priority for the program is integration of the three components, wherever possible. Bed sediments, as indicators of contaminant stress, are sampled at fourteen reaches in the river and major tributaries. Two species of resident fish are sampled and analyzed for condition factors, enzyme induction, histopathology and contaminant content at each of nine sites in the basin. The resident fish data are providing a measure of contaminant exposure and effect. Organism community effects will be assessed by a study which is classifying approximately 200 tributary and mainstem sites based on benthos community structure. For the first time in a large river system in Canada, this benthos study uses a multivariate approach which relates a suite of chemical and physical characteristics to benthos community structure.

  8. Aquatic biodiversity in forests: A weak link in ecosystem services resilience

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Penaluna, Brooke E.; Olson, Deanna H.; Flitcroft, Rebecca L; Weber, Matthew A.; Bellmore, J. Ryan; Wondzell, Steven M.; Dunham, Jason; Johnson, Sherri L.; Reeves, Gordon H.

    2016-01-01

    The diversity of aquatic ecosystems is being quickly reduced on many continents, warranting a closer examination of the consequences for ecological integrity and ecosystem services. Here we describe intermediate and final ecosystem services derived from aquatic biodiversity in forests. We include a summary of the factors framing the assembly of aquatic biodiversity in forests in natural systems and how they change with a variety of natural disturbances and human-derived stressors. We consider forested aquatic ecosystems as a multi-state portfolio, with diverse assemblages and life-history strategies occurring at local scales as a consequence of a mosaic of habitat conditions and past disturbances and stressors. Maintaining this multi-state portfolio of assemblages requires a broad perspective of ecosystem structure, various functions, services, and management implications relative to contemporary stressors. Because aquatic biodiversity provides multiple ecosystem services to forests, activities that compromise aquatic ecosystems and biodiversity could be an issue for maintaining forest ecosystem integrity. We illustrate these concepts with examples of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystem services in forests of northwestern North America, also known as Northeast Pacific Rim. Encouraging management planning at broad as well as local spatial scales to recognize multi-state ecosystem management goals has promise for maintaining valuable ecosystem services. Ultimately, integration of information from socio-ecological ecosystems will be needed to maintain ecosystem services derived directly and indirectly from forest aquatic biota.

  9. DEVELOPMENT OF A DISTURBANCE INDEX TO ASSESS THE CONDITION OF AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    An objective of aquatic monitoring is to assess the condition of aquatic habitats and biota. To rationally interpret aquatic condition, we must identify the range of human activities and the risks they pose to aquatic ecosystems. Placing stream reaches and their watersheds on a...

  10. Microplastics in aquatic environments: Implications for Canadian ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Julie C; Park, Bradley J; Palace, Vince P

    2016-11-01

    Microplastics have been increasingly detected and quantified in marine and freshwater environments, and there are growing concerns about potential effects in biota. A literature review was conducted to summarize the current state of knowledge of microplastics in Canadian aquatic environments; specifically, the sources, environmental fate, behaviour, abundance, and toxicological effects in aquatic organisms. While we found that research and publications on these topics have increased dramatically since 2010, relatively few studies have assessed the presence, fate, and effects of microplastics in Canadian water bodies. We suggest that efforts to determine aquatic receptors at greatest risk of detrimental effects due to microplastic exposure, and their associated contaminants, are particularly warranted. There is also a need to address the gaps identified, with a particular focus on the species and conditions found in Canadian aquatic systems. These gaps include characterization of the presence of microplastics in Canadian freshwater ecosystems, identifying key sources of microplastics to these systems, and evaluating the presence of microplastics in Arctic waters and biota.

  11. An automated platform for phytoplankton ecology and aquatic ecosystem monitoring.

    PubMed

    Pomati, Francesco; Jokela, Jukka; Simona, Marco; Veronesi, Mauro; Ibelings, Bas W

    2011-11-15

    High quality monitoring data are vital for tracking and understanding the causes of ecosystem change. We present a potentially powerful approach for phytoplankton and aquatic ecosystem monitoring, based on integration of scanning flow-cytometry for the characterization and counting of algal cells with multiparametric vertical water profiling. This approach affords high-frequency data on phytoplankton abundance, functional traits and diversity, coupled with the characterization of environmental conditions for growth over the vertical structure of a deep water body. Data from a pilot study revealed effects of an environmental disturbance event on the phytoplankton community in Lake Lugano (Switzerland), characterized by a reduction in cytometry-based functional diversity and by a period of cyanobacterial dominance. These changes were missed by traditional limnological methods, employed in parallel to high-frequency monitoring. Modeling of phytoplankton functional diversity revealed the importance of integrated spatiotemporal data, including circadian time-lags and variability over the water column, to understand the drivers of diversity and dynamic processes. The approach described represents progress toward an automated and trait-based analysis of phytoplankton natural communities. Streamlining of high-frequency measurements may represent a resource for understanding, modeling and managing aquatic ecosystems under impact of environmental change, yielding insight into processes governing phytoplankton community resistance and resilience.

  12. Characterizing Geohydrologic Linkages using Process Domains for Monitoring Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weekes, A.; Torgersen, C.; Montgomery, D. R.; Woodward, A.; Bolton, S.

    2009-12-01

    Aquatic habitats in glaciated headwater basins can differ widely within a mountain region and are often more complex than those found in lowland river systems. Current legislative mandates for ecosystem monitoring often require the ability to relate geomorphic and hydrologic stream attributes to ecological response. The capacity to define meaningful references states against which to evaluate current status and trends is particularly challenging in mountain aquatic ecosystems. To aid in the implementation of the National Park Service (NPS) Vital Signs Monitoring Program in the mountainous North Coast and Cascades Network (NCCN) parks, this project sought a systematic way to characterize both the spatial distribution of geomorphic controls within the stream hierarchy and to integrate hydrologic response. These controls comprise the physical context that supports biotic “vital signs” in park ecosystems and have consequences that directly affect the life history strategies and persistence of biota living in mountain streams and other aquatic habitats. However, there are currently no monitoring protocols that provide a precedent for incorporating the geomorphic spatial characteristics or diverse types of hydrologic response at the spatial and temporal scales unique to these headwater systems. To address this issue, we investigated relationships between valley-scale glacial macroforms and hydrologic indices (e.g. streamflow gauging, stable isotope analysis and water temperature measurements) in small (1 - 20 km2) headwater basins on the east side of Mount Rainier National Park. The linkage between geomorphic and hydrologic response was found to be best expressed in process domains defined as colluvial, alluvial and bedrock systems. Study results show a correlation between the percentage of colluvial process domains within a headwater catchment and the characteristic hydrologic regime of the basin. These relationships offer a framework that can account for the innate

  13. Methodological tests of a heterotrophy index for aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Antonio, R M; Bianchini Júnior, I

    2003-08-01

    Experiments in glucose mineralization were carried out to investigate the effects caused by natural forcing functions on both the decomposition rates and heterotrophy capacity of aquatic ecosystems. In addition, the methodology used could show connections between mineralization rates measured in both laboratory and field work with those measured in aquatic ecosystems. Water samples from Infernão lagoon (21 degrees 35'S and 47 degrees 51'W) were collected, filtered, enriched with glucose, and incubated under aerobic and anaerobic conditions. The glucose concentration variation, dissolved oxygen (DO) consumption, pH, electric conductivity, and total CO2 amount in the water were determined for sixteen days. In the period with intense oxygen consumption there was also an evident glucose demand and the dissolved oxygen consumption rate was approximately the same as that for glucose mineralization. The process in the aerobic chambers was 2.2 times faster than that in the anaerobic chambers. An initial acidification of the water samples, probably due to microbial carbonic acid liberation, was noted. A rise in pH values was also observed at the end of the process. The electric conductivity was low for both aerobic and anaerobic chambers, indicating a probable ion uptake by microbial organisms due to the presence of carbon sources. The glucose content variations corresponded to both CO2 formation and dissolved oxygen consumption. It was estimated that 19.4% of the initial glucose content turned into CO2 and the remaining 80.6% into humic compounds and microbial biomass. This experiment showed that glucose can be used as a substrate indicating the heterotrophy of a given aquatic ecosystem.

  14. Terrestrial reserve networks do not adequately represent aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Herbert, Matthew E; McIntyre, Peter B; Doran, Patrick J; Allan, J David; Abell, Robin

    2010-08-01

    Protected areas are a cornerstone of conservation and have been designed largely around terrestrial features. Freshwater species and ecosystems are highly imperiled, but the effectiveness of existing protected areas in representing freshwater features is poorly known. Using the inland waters of Michigan as a test case, we quantified the coverage of four key freshwater features (wetlands, riparian zones, groundwater recharge, rare species) within conservation lands and compared these with representation of terrestrial features. Wetlands were included within protected areas more often than expected by chance, but riparian zones were underrepresented across all (GAP 1-3) protected lands, particularly for headwater streams and large rivers. Nevertheless, within strictly protected lands (GAP 1-2), riparian zones were highly represented because of the contribution of the national Wild and Scenic Rivers Program. Representation of areas of groundwater recharge was generally proportional to area of the reserve network within watersheds, although a recharge hotspot associated with some of Michigan's most valued rivers is almost entirely unprotected. Species representation in protected areas differed significantly among obligate aquatic, wetland, and terrestrial species, with representation generally highest for terrestrial species and lowest for aquatic species. Our results illustrate the need to further evaluate and address the representation of freshwater features within protected areas and the value of broadening gap analysis and other protected-areas assessments to include key ecosystem processes that are requisite to long-term conservation of species and ecosystems. We conclude that terrestrially oriented protected-area networks provide a weak safety net for aquatic features, which means complementary planning and management for both freshwater and terrestrial conservation targets is needed.

  15. Physical Thresholds as Ecological Proxies in Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hausner, M. B.; Gaines, D. B.; Morrison, R. R.; Sada, D. W.; Scoppettone, G. G.; Stone, M. C.; Suarez, F. I.; Tyler, S. W.; Wilson, K. P.

    2015-12-01

    It is often difficult to directly quantify ecological thresholds and predict ecological responses to changing environmental conditions. Here, we present two case studies from Death Valley National Park - Devils Hole and Travertine Springs - in which physical parameters are used as proxies for ecological processes to assess the consequences of environmental change on aquatic ecosystems. In Devils Hole, seasonal thresholds for water temperature and food availability are defined to quantify the optimal recruitment window for the Devils Hole pupfish (Cyprinodon diabolis). At Travertine Springs, physical thresholds of water depth, velocity, and temperature are used to define the spatial extent of the preferred habitat of several threatened macroinvertebrate species. In both systems, mechanistic models are developed to predict the response of those physical thresholds to changing environmental conditions informed by climate change scenarios and potential changes in water availability. By examining the temporal and spatial response of targeted physical parameters to alternative scenarios, we can assess potential ecosystem impacts without direct measurement of ecological processes.

  16. Aquatic noise pollution: implications for individuals, populations, and ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Kunc, Hansjoerg P.; McLaughlin, Kirsty Elizabeth; Schmidt, Rouven

    2016-01-01

    Anthropogenically driven environmental changes affect our planet at an unprecedented scale and are considered to be a key threat to biodiversity. According to the World Health Organization, anthropogenic noise is one of the most hazardous forms of anthropogenically driven environmental change and is recognized as a major global pollutant. However, crucial advances in the rapidly emerging research on noise pollution focus exclusively on single aspects of noise pollution, e.g. on behaviour, physiology, terrestrial ecosystems, or on certain taxa. Given that more than two-thirds of our planet is covered with water, there is a pressing need to get a holistic understanding of the effects of anthropogenic noise in aquatic ecosystems. We found experimental evidence for negative effects of anthropogenic noise on an individual's development, physiology, and/or behaviour in both invertebrates and vertebrates. We also found that species differ in their response to noise, and highlight the potential underlying mechanisms for these differences. Finally, we point out challenges in the study of aquatic noise pollution and provide directions for future research, which will enhance our understanding of this globally present pollutant. PMID:27534952

  17. Risk assessment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bing; Zhang, Rui; Cheng, Shu-Pei; Ford, Timothy; Li, Ai-Min; Zhang, Xu-Xiang

    2011-07-01

    A probability risk assessment of anthracene, benzo(a)pyrene, chrysene, fluorene, phenanthrene and pyrene was carried out to examine the ecological risk of these six polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in aquatic ecosystems in China. The literature on PAH concentrations in surface water in China was collected to evaluate the environmental exposure concentrations (EEC). The 10th percentile of predicted no observed effect concentration (PNEC(10%)) of PAHs, calculated according to the data from the USEPA AQUIRE database and regulatory reviews, was applied as the toxicity assessment endpoint. The ratio of EEC and PNEC(10%), expressed as a risk quotient (RQ), was used to characterize the risk value. Bootstrapping method and Monte Carlo simulation were utilized to calculate the distribution of EEC, PNEC(10%), RQ and associated uncertainties. Risk assessment showed that reliable maximum RQs of anthracene, benzo(a)pyrene, chrysene, fluorene and phenanthrene were in the range of 0.064-0.755, lower than the acceptable value of 1. However, the reliable maximum RQ of pyrene was 1.39, indicating its potential ecological risk. Notwithstanding the uncertainty, these results suggest that the aquatic ecosystems with high PAH concentrations might pose potential ecological risks, and concerted efforts are required to ensure that surface water is protected.

  18. Aquatic noise pollution: implications for individuals, populations, and ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Kunc, Hansjoerg P; McLaughlin, Kirsty Elizabeth; Schmidt, Rouven

    2016-08-17

    Anthropogenically driven environmental changes affect our planet at an unprecedented scale and are considered to be a key threat to biodiversity. According to the World Health Organization, anthropogenic noise is one of the most hazardous forms of anthropogenically driven environmental change and is recognized as a major global pollutant. However, crucial advances in the rapidly emerging research on noise pollution focus exclusively on single aspects of noise pollution, e.g. on behaviour, physiology, terrestrial ecosystems, or on certain taxa. Given that more than two-thirds of our planet is covered with water, there is a pressing need to get a holistic understanding of the effects of anthropogenic noise in aquatic ecosystems. We found experimental evidence for negative effects of anthropogenic noise on an individual's development, physiology, and/or behaviour in both invertebrates and vertebrates. We also found that species differ in their response to noise, and highlight the potential underlying mechanisms for these differences. Finally, we point out challenges in the study of aquatic noise pollution and provide directions for future research, which will enhance our understanding of this globally present pollutant.

  19. Environmental bacteriophages: viruses of microbes in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Sime-Ngando, Télesphore

    2014-01-01

    Since the discovery 2-3 decades ago that viruses of microbes are abundant in marine ecosystems, viral ecology has grown increasingly to reach the status of a full scientific discipline in environmental sciences. A dedicated ISVM society, the International Society for Viruses of Microorganisms, (http://www.isvm.org/) was recently launched. Increasing studies in viral ecology are sources of novel knowledge related to the biodiversity of living things, the functioning of ecosystems, and the evolution of the cellular world. This is because viruses are perhaps the most diverse, abundant, and ubiquitous biological entities in the biosphere, although local environmental conditions enrich for certain viral types through selective pressure. They exhibit various lifestyles that intimately depend on the deep-cellular mechanisms, and are ultimately replicated by members of all three domains of cellular life (Bacteria, Eukarya, Archaea), as well as by giant viruses of some eukaryotic cells. This establishes viral parasites as microbial killers but also as cell partners or metabolic manipulators in microbial ecology. The present chapter sought to review the literature on the diversity and functional roles of viruses of microbes in environmental microbiology, focusing primarily on prokaryotic viruses (i.e., phages) in aquatic ecosystems, which form the bulk of our knowledge in modern environmental viral ecology.

  20. Environmental bacteriophages: viruses of microbes in aquatic ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Sime-Ngando, Télesphore

    2014-01-01

    Since the discovery 2–3 decades ago that viruses of microbes are abundant in marine ecosystems, viral ecology has grown increasingly to reach the status of a full scientific discipline in environmental sciences. A dedicated ISVM society, the International Society for Viruses of Microorganisms, (http://www.isvm.org/) was recently launched. Increasing studies in viral ecology are sources of novel knowledge related to the biodiversity of living things, the functioning of ecosystems, and the evolution of the cellular world. This is because viruses are perhaps the most diverse, abundant, and ubiquitous biological entities in the biosphere, although local environmental conditions enrich for certain viral types through selective pressure. They exhibit various lifestyles that intimately depend on the deep-cellular mechanisms, and are ultimately replicated by members of all three domains of cellular life (Bacteria, Eukarya, Archaea), as well as by giant viruses of some eukaryotic cells. This establishes viral parasites as microbial killers but also as cell partners or metabolic manipulators in microbial ecology. The present chapter sought to review the literature on the diversity and functional roles of viruses of microbes in environmental microbiology, focusing primarily on prokaryotic viruses (i.e., phages) in aquatic ecosystems, which form the bulk of our knowledge in modern environmental viral ecology. PMID:25104950

  1. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program: Aquatic ecosystem studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burton, Thomas M.; Stout, R. J.; Winterstein, Scott; Coon, Thomas; Novinger, Doug

    1994-11-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program that monitored biota and ecological miationships for possible effects from electromagnetic (EM) fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents the results and conclusions of aquatic studies conducted near its transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan State University (MSU) monitored aquatic flora and fauna on matched reaches of the Ford River. A treatment site was located immediately adjacent to the antenna, whereas a control site was situated at a distance downstream. Functional and structural components of the periphyton, insect, and fish communities were monitored. The research team also measured ambient factors such as temperature, discharge, and water quality indicators. Data were analyzed using a variety of statistical tests; however, BACI techniques were emphasized. Results indicated a relative increase in algal biomass at the treatment site after the antenna became fully operational, but no changes in any other parameter or organism. MSU concludes that algal biomass was affected by ELF EM exposure. Since neither the other ecological characteristics of the periphyton nor the insect and fish communities showed any effects, MSU infers little EM impact to riverine habitats.

  2. Ecological Relationships Between Components in Closed Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pisman, Tamara; Somova, Lydia

    The work considers the problems of relationships between algae and other microorganisms in aquatic ecosystems. Using small-scale laboratory "autotroph-heterotroph" ecosystems with different types of closure, we showed the results of the investigation into the ecological relation-ships of algae in biocenoses. The autotrophic component was represented by green microalgae, and the heterotrophic component -by yeast and bacteria. An important role in functioning of algobacterial communities is played by 2 -2 (oxygen -carbon dioxide) exchange. The gas exchange between algae and yeast was studied in the "autotroph-heterotroph" gas-closed ecosystem with space-divided components. It was shown that the gas exchange closure of the components into a system prolongs its existence. Hav-ing increased the degree of the system closure by introducing two yeast species with positive metabolic interaction to the heterotrophic component, we observed a significant increase in the gas exchange between the components and thus in the biomass of algae and yeast. The most ancient and ecologically relevant symbioses known in nature are symbiotic associa-tions of algae and heterotrophic organisms. The main symbionts of algae in aquatic ecosystems are bacteria. The cenosis-forming role of algae is based on two characteristics: firstly, their mucous covers and membranes are able to absorb and retain large amounts of water; secondly, many algae evolve various organic substances during their lifetime. An example of algobacterial associations are microalgae Chlorella vulgaris and accompanying microbial flora. Experiments with non-sterile batch culture of algae showed that the increase in the algae biomass was accompanied by the increase in the bacterial biomass. As a result of theoretical and experi-mental investigation into their relationships, it was shown that the largest biomass of bacteria is achieved when using organic substances evolved by algae and having bacteria grow on dead algae; i

  3. Selection of candidate aquatic high plants as producer of closed aquatic ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Gaohong; Hao, Zongjie; Liu, Yongding

    Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems (CELSS) is very important for long-term manned space flight. Aquatic organism was regarded to be suitable for this study because of their great adaptation to the weightless condition which approximate to their wild condition in water. In order to study of operation of CELSS in space, the first step is to choose good candidate species for study. In this report, we compared the characteristics of nutrient content, growth and suitability with animals among five types of aquatic high plants including Ceratophyllum demersum L., Vallisneria spiralis L., Hydrilla verticillata Royle, Brasenia schreberi, Wolfia arrhiza under control condition. It was found that B. schreberi had the best nutrients content, but it growth depended on gas interface which may be a big problem in microgravity. C. demersum and W. arrhiza had the better nutrient content than other types, and V. spiralis and H. verticillata had the worst nutrient content. The closed aquatic system can provided condition for the growth of other plants than B. schreberi. So we selected C. demersum and W. arrhiza as the candidate of producer for establish Closed Aquatic Ecosystem. We also established a simple system& by housing three small freshwater snails (Bulinus australianus) and C. demersum in a 500mL box with light and temperature control. The values about pH, oxygen concentration, temperature and light had been acquired by sensors in real time for about 3 month. It was found that plant's biomass increased for several days and then leveled off and the snails survive, and the atmosphere and biomass for food met snails' requirement during experiments.

  4. Cross-ecosystem fluxes: Export of polyunsaturated fatty acids from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems via emerging insects.

    PubMed

    Martin-Creuzburg, Dominik; Kowarik, Carmen; Straile, Dietmar

    2017-01-15

    Cross-ecosystem fluxes can crucially influence the productivity of adjacent habitats. Emerging aquatic insects represent one important pathway through which freshwater-derived organic matter can enter terrestrial food webs. Aquatic insects may be of superior food quality for terrestrial consumers because they contain high concentrations of essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). We quantified the export of PUFA via emerging insects from a midsize, mesotrophic lake. Insects were collected using emergence traps installed above different water depths and subjected to fatty acid analyses. Insect emergence from different depth zones and seasonal mean fatty acid concentrations in different insect groups were used to estimate PUFA fluxes. In total, 80.5mg PUFA m(-2)yr(-1) were exported, of which 32.8mgm(-2)yr(-1) were eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), 7.8mgm(-2)yr(-1) were arachidonic acid (ARA), and 2.6mgm(-2)yr(-1) were docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). While Chironomidae contributed most to insect biomass and total PUFA export, Chaoborus flavicans contributed most to the export of EPA, ARA, and especially DHA. The export of total insect biomass from one square meter declined with depth and the timing at which 50% of total insect biomass emerged was correlated with the water depths over which the traps were installed, suggesting that insect-mediated PUFA fluxes are strongly affected by lake morphometry. Applying a conceptual model developed to assess insect deposition rates on land to our insect-mediated PUFA export data revealed an average total PUFA deposition rate of 150mgm(-2)yr(-1) within 100m inland from the shore. We propose that PUFA export can be reliably estimated using taxon-specific information on emergent insect biomass and seasonal mean body PUFA concentrations of adult insects provided here. Our data indicate that insect-mediated PUFA fluxes from lakes are substantial, implying that freshwater-derived PUFA can crucially influence food web processes in adjacent

  5. Does eutrophication-driven evolution change aquatic ecosystems?

    PubMed

    Alexander, Timothy J; Vonlanthen, Pascal; Seehausen, Ole

    2017-01-19

    Eutrophication increases primary production and changes the relative abundance, taxonomic composition and spatial distribution of primary producers within an aquatic ecosystem. The changes in composition and location of resources alter the distribution and flow of energy and biomass throughout the food web. Changes in productivity also alter the physico-chemical environment, which has further effects on the biota. Such ecological changes influence the direction and strength of natural and sexual selection experienced by populations. Besides altering selection, they can also erode the habitat gradients and/or behavioural mechanisms that maintain ecological separation and reproductive isolation among species. Consequently, eutrophication of lakes commonly results in reduced ecological specialization as well as genetic and phenotypic homogenization among lakes and among niches within lakes. We argue that the associated loss in functional diversity and niche differentiation may lead to decreased carrying capacity and lower resource-use efficiency by consumers. We show that in central European whitefish species radiations, the functional diversity affected by eutrophication-induced speciation reversal correlates with community-wide trophic transfer efficiency (fisheries yield per unit phosphorus). We take this as an example of how evolutionary dynamics driven by anthropogenic environmental change can have lasting effects on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning.This article is part of the themed issue 'Human influences on evolution, and the ecological and societal consequences'.

  6. Human health-related ecosystem services of avian-dense coastal wetlands adjacent to a Western Lake Erie swimming beach.

    PubMed

    Rea, Chris L; Bisesi, Michael S; Mitsch, William; Andridge, Rebecca; Lee, Jiyoung

    2015-03-01

    Wetlands provide many valuable ecosystem services, including water quality improvement to protect downstream aquatic ecosystems such as lakes, rivers, and estuaries. However, their ability to improve water quality to safe levels for direct human exposure while largely surrounded by agricultural lands and hosting large wildlife populations remains unknown. Our aim was to examine the ecosystem service capabilities of an avian-dense coastal wetland surrounded by agricultural lands along the southwestern shore of Lake Erie in Ohio by assessing the quality of water as it flows through the wetland (Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (ONWR)) and into Lake Erie beach waters. Our study used total phosphorus and fecal indicator (Escherichia coli) concentrations as water quality metrics across the wetland and at an adjacent Lake Erie swimming beach during the 2012 summer swim season. E. coli and total P levels were consistently highest at the site, where water enters the ONWR (mean E. coli = 507 CFU/100 mL; mean total P = 535 μg/L), and steadily decreased as water flowed through the wetland and into the adjacent beach (mean E. coli = 10 CFU/100 mL; mean total P = 41 μg/L). E. coli and total P showed statistically significant (α = 0.01) correlations with phycocyanin, chlorophyll-a, turbidity, specific conductivity, dissolved oxygen, and pH; total P was also significantly correlated with total N. The results suggest that this wetland may be contributing to improving water quality, which is beneficial for human health as well as to downstream ecosystem health (e.g., limiting eutrophication promoting conditions, etc.).

  7. The Closed Equilibrated Biological Aquatic System: A 12 months Test of an Artificial Aquatic Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blüm, V.; Andriske, M.; Ludwig, Ch.; Paaßen, U.; Voeste, D.

    1999-01-01

    The ``Closed Equilibrated Biological Aquatic System'' (C.E.B.A.S.) is finally disposed for long-term multi-generation experiments with aquatic organisms in a space station. Therefore a minimum operation time of three month is required. It is verified in three versions of laboratory prototypes. The third one passed successfully a 12 months mid-term test in 1995/96 thus demonstrating its high biological stability. The third version of the C.E.B.A.S. consists of a 100 l animal tank, two plant cultivators with a volume of 15 l each with independent illuminations, a 3.0 l semibiological ``mechanical'' filter, a 3.0 l bacteria filter, a heating/cooling device and a dummy filter unit. The live-bearing teleost Xiphophorus helleri is the vertebrate and the pulmonate water snail Biomphalaria glabrata the invertebrate experimental animal in the system. The rootless higher water plant Ceratophyllum demersum is the producer organism. Ammonia oxidizing bacteria and other microorganisms settle in the filters. A simple data acquisition is combined with temperature and plant illumination control. Besides of the space aspects the C.E.B.A.S. proved to be an extremely suitable tool to investigate the organism and subcomponent interactions in a well defined terrestrial aquatic closed ecosystem by providing physical, chemical and biological data which allow an approach to a comprehensive system analysis. Moreover the C.E.B.A.S. is the base for the development of innovative combined animal-plant aquaculture systems for human nutrition on earth which could be implemented into bioregenerative life support systems with a higher degree of complexity suitable for lunar or planetary bases.

  8. Fire and aquatic ecosystems of the western USA: Current knowledge and key questions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bisson, P.A.; Rieman, B.; Luce, C.; Hessburg, Paul F.; Lee, D.; Kershner, J.; Reeves, G.H.; Gresswell, Robert E.

    2003-01-01

    Understanding of the effects of wildland fire and fire management on aquatic and riparian ecosystems is an evolving field, with many questions still to be resolved. Limitations of current knowledge, and the certainty that fire management will continue, underscore the need to summarize available information. Integrating fire and fuels management with aquatic ecosystem conservation begins with recognizing that terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems are linked and dynamic, and that fire can play a critical role in maintaining aquatic ecological diversity. To protect aquatic ecosystems we argue that it will be important to: (1) accommodate fire-related and other ecological processes that maintain aquatic habitats and biodiversity, and not simply control fires or fuels; (2) prioritize projects according to risks and opportunities for fire control and the protection of aquatic ecosystems; and (3) develop new consistency in the management and regulatory process. Ultimately, all natural resource management is uncertain; the role of science is to apply experimental design and hypothesis testing to management applications that affect fire and aquatic ecosystems. Policy-makers and the public will benefit from an expanded appreciation of fire ecology that enables them to implement watershed management projects as experiments with hypothesized outcomes, adequate controls, and replication.

  9. Effects of micro- and nanoplastics on aquatic ecosystems: Current research trends and perspectives.

    PubMed

    Chae, Yooeun; An, Youn-Joo

    2017-02-17

    Contamination by bulk plastics and plastic debris is currently the one of the most serious environmental problems in aquatic ecosystems. In particular, small-scale plastic debris such as microplastics and nanoplastics has become leading contributors to the pollution of marine and freshwater ecosystems. Studies are investigating the impacts of micro-and nanoplastics on aquatic organisms and ecosystems worldwide. This review covers 83 studies that investigated the distribution of microplastics and the ecotoxicity of micro- and nanoplastics in marine and freshwater ecosystems. The studies indicated that micro-sized plastics and plastic debris were distributed at various concentrations in aquatic ecosystems around the world. They had various effects on the growth, development, behavior, reproduction, and mortality of aquatic animals. We discuss these studies in detail and suggest directions for future research.

  10. Aquatic Ecosystem Enhancement at Mountaintop Mining Sites Symposium

    SciTech Connect

    Black, D. Courtney; Lawson, Peter; Morgan, John; Maggard, Randy; Schor, Horst; Powell, Rocky; Kirk, Ed. J.

    2000-01-12

    Welcome to this symposium which is part of the ongoing effort to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) regarding mountaintop mining and valley fills. The EIS is being prepared by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Office of Surface Mining, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, in cooperation with the State of West Virginia. Aquatic Ecosystem Enhancement (AEE) at mountaintop mining sites is one of fourteen technical areas identified for study by the EIS Interagency Steering Committee. Three goals were identified in the AEE Work Plan: 1. Assess mining and reclamation practices to show how mining operations might be carried out in a way that minimizes adverse impacts to streams and other environmental resources and to local communities. Clarify economic and technical constraints and benefits. 2. Help citizens clarify choices by showing whether there are affordable ways to enhance existing mining, reclamation, mitigation processes and/or procedures. 3. Ide identify data needed to improve environmental evaluation and design of mining projects to protect the environment. Today’s symposium was proposed in the AEE Team Work Plans but coordinated planning for the event began September 15, 1999 when representatives from coal industry, environmental groups and government regulators met in Morgantown. The meeting participants worked with a facilitator from the Canaan Valley Institute to outline plans for the symposium. Several teams were formed to carry out the plans we outlined in the meeting.

  11. Performance of a simple Closed Aquatic Ecosystem (CAES) in space.

    PubMed

    Wang, G-H; Li, G-B; Hu, C-X; Liu, Y-D; Song, L-R; Tong, G-H; Liu, X-M; Cheng, E-T

    2004-01-01

    A simple Closed Aquatic Ecosystem (CAES) consisting of single-celled green algae (Chlorella pyrenoidosa, producer), a spiral snail (Bulinus australianus, consumer) and a data acquisition and control unit was flown on the Chinese Spacecraft SHENZHOU-II in January 2001 for 7 days. In order to study the effect of microgravity on the operation of CAES, a 1 g centrifuge reference group in space, a ground 1 g reference group and a ground 1 g centrifuge reference group (1.4 g group) were run concurrently. Real-time data about algae biomass (calculated from transmission light intensity), temperature, light and centrifugation of the CAES were logged at minute intervals. It was found that algae biomass of both the microgravity group and the ground 1 g-centrifuge reference group (1.4 g) fluctuated during the experiment, but the algae biomass of the 1 g centrifuge reference group in space and the ground 1 g reference group increased during the experiment. The results may be attributable to influences of microgravity and 1.4 g gravity on the algae and snails metabolisms. Microgravity is the main factor to affect the operation of CAES in space and the contribution of microgravity to the effect was also estimated. These data may be valuable for the establishment of a complex CELSS in the future.

  12. Effects of solar UV-B radiation on aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Hader, D P

    2000-01-01

    Solar UV degrades dissolved organic carbon photolytically so that they can readily be taken up by bacterioplankton. On the other hand solar UV radiation inhibits bacterioplankton activity. Bacterioplankton productivity is far greater than previously thought and is comparable to phytoplankton primary productivity. According to the "microbial loop hypothesis," bacterioplankton is seen in the center of a food web, having a similar function to phytoplankton and protists. The penetration of UV and PAR into the water column can be measured. Marine waters show large temporal and regional differences in their concentrations of dissolved and particulate absorbing substances. A network of dosimeters (ELDONET) has been installed in Europe ranging from Abisko in Northern Sweden to Gran Canaria. Cyanobacteria are capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen which is then made available to higher plants. The agricultural potential of cyanobacteria has been recognized as a biological fertilizer for wet soils such as in rice paddies. UV-B is known to impair processes such as growth, survival, pigmentation, motility, as well as the enzymes of nitrogen metabolism and CO2 fixation. The marine phytoplankton represents the single most important ecosystem on our planet and produces about the same biomass as all terrestrial ecosystems taken together. It is the base of the aquatic food chain and any changes in the size and composition of phytoplankton communities will directly affect food production for humans from marine sources. Another important role of marine phytoplankton is to serve as a sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide. Recent investigations have shown a large sensitivity of most phytoplankton organisms toward solar short-wavelength ultraviolet radiation (UV-B); even at ambient levels of UV-B radiation many organisms seem to be under UV stress. Because of their requirement for solar energy, the phytoplankton dwell in the top layers of the water column. In this near-surface position

  13. Regionalizing aquatic ecosystems based on the river subbasin taxonomy concept and spatial clustering techniques.

    PubMed

    Gao, Yongnian; Gao, Junfeng; Chen, Jiongfeng; Xu, Yan; Zhao, Jiahu

    2011-11-01

    Aquatic ecoregions were increasingly used as spatial units for aquatic ecosystem management at the watershed scale. In this paper, the principle of including land area, comprehensiveness and dominance, conjugation and hierarchy were selected as regionalizing principles. Elevation and drainage density were selected as the regionalizing indicators for the delineation of level I aquatic ecoregions, and percent of construction land area, percent of cultivated land area, soil type and slope for the level II. Under the support of GIS technology, the spatial distribution maps of the two indicators for level I and the four indicators for level II aquatic ecoregion delineation were generated from the raster data based on the 1,107 subwatersheds. River subbasin taxonomy concept, two-step spatial clustering analysis approach and manual-assisted method were used to regionalize aquatic ecosystems in the Taihu Lake watershed. Then the Taihu Lake watershed was divided into two level I aquatic ecoregions, including Ecoregion I1 and Ecoregion I2, and five level II aquatic subecoregions, including Subecoregion II11, Subecoregion II12, Subecoregion II21, Subecoregion II22 and Subecoregion II23. Moreover, the characteristics of the two level I aquatic ecoregions and five level II aquatic subecoregions in the Taihu Lake watershed were summarized, showing that there were significant differences in topography, socio-economic development, water quality and aquatic ecology, etc. The results of quantitative comparison of aquatic life also indicated that the dominant species of fish, benthic density, biomass, dominant species, Shannon-Wiener diversity index, Margalef species richness index, Pielou evenness index and ecological dominance showed great spatial variability between the two level I aquatic ecoregions and five level II aquatic subecoregions. It reflected the spatial heterogeneities and the uneven natures of aquatic ecosystems in the Taihu Lake watershed.

  14. CONCEPTUAL MODELS AND METHODS TO GUIDE DIAGNOSTIC RESEARCH INTO CAUSES OF IMPAIRMENT TO AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Methods and conceptual models to guide the development of tools for diagnosing the causes of biological impairment within aquatic ecosystems of the United States are described in this report. The conceptual models developed here address nutrients, suspended and bedded sediments (...

  15. Determining the Effectiveness of Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration, Conservation, and Management Practices.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The science of aquatic ecosystem restoration and management is still in its infancy, largely because most projects are inadequately tracked and monitored for assessing their success. Historically, evaluating the effectiveness of best management practices (BMPs) has relied heavily...

  16. Geologic sources of nutrients for aquatic ecosystems (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlgren, R. A.; Jeffres, C.; Nichols, A. L.; Deas, M.; Willis, A.; Mount, J.

    2010-12-01

    Nutrient inputs from geologic materials are not typically considered an ecologically significant source of nutrients for freshwater aquatic ecosystems. However, in volcanic terrains where regional groundwater interacts with volcanic and underlying sedimentary deposits, nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) from geologic sources can provide ecologically significant inputs of nutrients to fuel aquatic food webs. The Big Springs-Shasta River complex emanating from the flanks of Mt. Shasta, a stratovolcano in northern California, creates a unique ecological niche that we propose as the explanation for the exceptionally high historical abundances and productivity of salmonids in the Shasta River. The Big Springs complex is a slightly-thermal springs (natural flow of 2.6 m3/s) that is the primary source of water for the Shasta River. The spring waters have a mean recharge elevation of 2880 m on Mt. Shasta. During the 20-50 years of transport as groundwater, both nitrogen and phosphorus are released from the underlying marine sedimentary and volcanic rocks. Mean NO3-N and soluble-reactive PO4-P concentrations over a two year period were 0.48 mg/L and 0.15 mg/L, respectively. The PO4 concentrations are in equilibrium with hydroxyapatite (Ca2OHPO4) suggesting that release of PO4 by chemical weathering of the highly weatherable volcanic deposits is the primary source of the PO4. The primary source of nitrogen is from detrital organic matter incorporated in the marine sedimentary rocks during diagensis. This “geologic” nitrogen is released from rocks by hydrothermal waters and transported with the groundwater. The nitrogen and phosphorus coupled with year round consistent water flow volumes and thermal buffering (10-12o C) fuel primary productivity and enhance food web productivity. Abundant nutrients allow for high rates of primary productivity, providing food for invertebrates, which ultimately comprise the primary food source for salmonids. These volcanic-derived, spring

  17. MICROBIAL INDICATORS OF AQUATIC ECOSYSTEM CHANGE: CURRENT APPLICATIONS TO EUTROPHICATION STUDIES. (R828677C001)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Human encroachment on aquatic ecosystems is increasing at an unprecedented rate. The impacts of human pollution and habitat alteration are most evident and of greatest concern at the microbial level, where a bulk of production and nutrient cycling takes place. Aquatic ecosyste...

  18. Biomonitoring: an appealing tool for assessment of metal pollution in the aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Qunfang; Zhang, Jianbin; Fu, Jianjie; Shi, Jianbo; Jiang, Guibin

    2008-01-14

    Wide occurrence of aquatic metal pollution has caused much attention. Biomonitoring offers an appealing tool for the assessment of metal pollution in aquatic ecosystem. The bioindicators including algae, macrophyte, zooplankton, insect, bivalve mollusks, gastropod, fish, amphibian and others are enumerated and compared for their advantages and disadvantages in practical biomonitoring of aquatic metal pollution. The common biomonitoring techniques classified as bioaccumulation, biochemical alterations, morphological and behavior observation, population- and community-level approaches and modeling are discussed. The potential applications of biomonitoring are proposed to mainly include evaluation of actual aquatic metal pollution, bioremediation, toxicology prediction and researches on toxicological mechanism. Further perspectives are made for the biomonitoring of metal pollution in aquatic ecosystem.

  19. Increases in terrestrially derived carbon stimulate organic carbon processing and CO₂ emissions in boreal aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Lapierre, Jean-François; Guillemette, François; Berggren, Martin; del Giorgio, Paul A

    2013-01-01

    The concentrations of terrestrially derived dissolved organic carbon have been increasing throughout northern aquatic ecosystems in recent decades, but whether these shifts have an impact on aquatic carbon emissions at the continental scale depends on the potential for this terrestrial carbon to be converted into carbon dioxide. Here, via the analysis of hundreds of boreal lakes, rivers and wetlands in Canada, we show that, contrary to conventional assumptions, the proportion of biologically degradable dissolved organic carbon remains constant and the photochemical degradability increases with terrestrial influence. Thus, degradation potential increases with increasing amounts of terrestrial carbon. Our results provide empirical evidence of a strong causal link between dissolved organic carbon concentrations and aquatic fluxes of carbon dioxide, mediated by the degradation of land-derived organic carbon in aquatic ecosystems. Future shifts in the patterns of terrestrial dissolved organic carbon in inland waters thus have the potential to significantly increase aquatic carbon emissions across northern landscapes.

  20. Biological Production in Lakes. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Ecological Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walters, R. A.; Carey, G. F.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. Primary production in aquatic ecosystems is carried out by phytoplankton, microscopic plants…

  1. Turbulence and Fluid Flow: Perspectives. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simpson, James R.

    This module is part of a series on Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems. The materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process.…

  2. Effects of roads on adjacent plant community composition and ecosystem function: An example from three calcareous ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Lee, Mark A; Davies, Linda; Power, Sally A

    2012-04-01

    Roads and exhaust emissions can affect plant communities directly, for example via direct foliar uptake of exhaust products, or indirectly via changes to soil biogeochemistry and hydrology. A transect study adjacent to roads of different traffic densities was carried out at three species-rich calcareous grasslands in south eastern England. Measured annual NO(2) concentrations and modelled NH(3) concentrations increased towards the roads and with higher traffic densities, and there was evidence of increased soil moisture, pH and heavy metal concentrations at roadsides. Increases in the abundance of nitrogen (N) tolerant species and grasses at roadsides were associated with N enrichment from vehicle exhausts at two of the sites. In contrast plant species richness, the abundance of forb and moss species declined at roadside locations. As vehicle usage spreads across the world, it is increasingly important to understand the effects of road traffic on adjacent ecosystems to inform traffic and conservation management policies.

  3. Development of scientific tools for monitoring the health of aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caldararu, Aurelia; Voiculescu, Mirela; Georgescu, Lucian P.

    2010-05-01

    Humanity is faced nowadays with the major problem of water availability and quality which is a conseqquence of growing demand for water as well as the decline of water quality and quantity. It is not an exaggeration to claim that, without effective management of aquatic ecosystems, the future social and economic development of the world will suffer serious constraints or will be placed significantly at risk. Taking into consideration the fact that the world is rapidly changing, current practices of water management must also change. Developed and developing countries will have to adopt the most effective policies for the management of aquatic ecosystems. They will also have to start using the best techniques for water monitoring. The nature of future problems that could arise in aquatic ecosystems must be carefully anticipated and then objectively analysed in the light of the expected changes. The Water Framework Directive (WFD) requires a holistic knowledge of abiotic and biotic structure and processes that determine the functioning of aquatic ecosystems. Ecological indicators are provided to monitor the ecosystem responses to anthropogenic pressures. We will summarize in this presentation ecological indices that can be used for effective and accurate monitoring of aquatic ecosystems. Different contexts where these indices can be used for environmental health monitoring will be also analysed.

  4. A Source of Terrestrial Organic Carbon to Investigate the Browning of Aquatic Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Lennon, Jay T.; Hamilton, Stephen K.; Muscarella, Mario E.; Grandy, A. Stuart; Wickings, Kyle; Jones, Stuart E.

    2013-01-01

    There is growing evidence that terrestrial ecosystems are exporting more dissolved organic carbon (DOC) to aquatic ecosystems than they did just a few decades ago. This “browning” phenomenon will alter the chemistry, physics, and biology of inland water bodies in complex and difficult-to-predict ways. Experiments provide an opportunity to elucidate how browning will affect the stability and functioning of aquatic ecosystems. However, it is challenging to obtain sources of DOC that can be used for manipulations at ecologically relevant scales. In this study, we evaluated a commercially available source of humic substances (“Super Hume”) as an analog for natural sources of terrestrial DOC. Based on chemical characterizations, comparative surveys, and whole-ecosystem manipulations, we found that the physical and chemical properties of Super Hume are similar to those of natural DOC in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. For example, Super Hume attenuated solar radiation in ways that will not only influence the physiology of aquatic taxa but also the metabolism of entire ecosystems. Based on its chemical properties (high lignin content, high quinone content, and low C:N and C:P ratios), Super Hume is a fairly recalcitrant, low-quality resource for aquatic consumers. Nevertheless, we demonstrate that Super Hume can subsidize aquatic food webs through 1) the uptake of dissolved organic constituents by microorganisms, and 2) the consumption of particulate fractions by larger organisms (i.e., Daphnia). After discussing some of the caveats of Super Hume, we conclude that commercial sources of humic substances can be used to help address pressing ecological questions concerning the increased export of terrestrial DOC to aquatic ecosystems. PMID:24124511

  5. NON-TRADITIONAL RESPONSES TO PHARMACEUTICALS IN AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Quantitation of human and veterinary pharmaceuticals in environmental matrices has resulted in pharmaceuticals in the environment receiving unprecedented attention from the scientific community. Aquatic hazard assessments often use quantitative structure activity relationships an...

  6. Ecohydrology of adjacent sagebrush and lodgepole pine ecosystems: the consequences of climate change and disturbance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bradford, John B.; Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Lauenroth, William K.

    2014-01-01

    Sagebrush steppe and lodgepole pine forests are two of the most widespread vegetation types in the western United States and they play crucial roles in the hydrologic cycle of these water-limited regions. We used a process-based ecosystem water model to characterize the potential impact of climate change and disturbance (wildfire and beetle mortality) on water cycling in adjacent sagebrush and lodgepole pine ecosystems. Despite similar climatic and topographic conditions between these ecosystems at the sites examined, lodgepole pine, and sagebrush exhibited consistent differences in water balance, notably more evaporation and drier summer soils in the sagebrush and greater transpiration and less water yield in lodgepole pine. Canopy disturbances (either fire or beetle) have dramatic impacts on water balance and availability: reducing transpiration while increasing evaporation and water yield. Results suggest that climate change may reduce snowpack, increase evaporation and transpiration, and lengthen the duration of dry soil conditions in the summer, but may have uncertain effects on drainage. Changes in the distribution of sagebrush and lodgepole pine ecosystems as a consequence of climate change and/or altered disturbance regimes will likely alter ecosystem water balance.

  7. Metrics of ecosystem status for large aquatic systems: a global comparison

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dobiesz, N.E.; Hecky, R.E.; Johnson, T.B.; Sarvala, J.; Dettmers, J.M.; Lehtiniemi, M.; Rudstam, L. G.; Madenjian, C.P.; Witte, F.

    2010-01-01

    We identified an objective set of 25 commonly available ecosystem metrics applicable across the world's large continental freshwater and brackish aquatic ecosystem. These metrics measure trophic structure, exploited species, habitat alteration, and catchment changes. We used long-term trends in these metrics as indicators of perturbations that represent an ecosystem not in homeostasis. We defined a healthy ecosystem as being in a homeostatic state; therefore, ecosystems with many changing trends were defined as more disturbed than ecosystems with fewer changing trends. Healthy ecosystems (lakes Baikal, Superior, and Tanganyika) were large, deep lakes in relatively unpopulated areas with no signs of eutrophication and no changes to their trophic structure. Disturbed ecosystems (lakes Michigan, Ontario, and Victoria) had shallow to moderately deep basins with high watershed population pressure and intense agricultural and residential land use. Transitioning systems had widely varying trends and faced increasing anthropogenic pressures. Standardized methodologies for capturing data could improve our understanding of the current state of these ecosystems and allow for comparisons of the response of large aquatic ecosystems to local and global stressors thereby providing more reliable insights into future changes in ecosystem health.

  8. Mercury bioaccumulation along food webs in temperate aquatic ecosystems colonized by aquatic macrophytes in south western France.

    PubMed

    Gentès, Sophie; Maury-Brachet, Régine; Guyoneaud, Rémy; Monperrus, Mathilde; André, Jean-Marc; Davail, Stéphane; Legeay, Alexia

    2013-05-01

    Mercury (Hg) is considered as an important pollutant for aquatic systems as its organic form, methylmercury (MeHg), is easily bioaccumulated and bioamplified along food webs. In various ecosystems, aquatic periphyton associated with macrophyte was identified as an important place for Hg storage and methylation by microorganisms. Our study concerns temperate aquatic ecosystems (South Western France) colonized by invasive macrophytes and characterized by high mercury methylation potentials. This work establishes original data concerning Hg bioaccumulation in organisms (plants, crustaceans, molluscs and fish) from five contrasting ecosystems. For low trophic level species, total Hg (THg) concentrations were low (from 27±2ngTHgg(-1)dw in asiatic clam Corbicula fluminea to 418±114ngTHgg(-1)dw in crayfish Procambarus clarkii). THg concentrations in some carnivorous fish (high trophic level) were close to or exceeded the International Marketing Level (IML) with values ranging from 1049±220ngTHgg(-1)dw in pike perch muscle (Sander lucioperca) to 3910±1307ngTHgg(-1)dw in eel muscle (Anguilla Anguilla). Trophic levels for the individuals were also evaluated through stable isotope analysis, and linked to Hg concentrations of organisms. A significant Hg biomagnification (r(2)= 0.9) was observed in the Aureilhan lake, despite the absence of top predator fish. For this site, Ludwigia sp. periphyton, as an entry point of Hg into food webs, is a serious hypothesis which remains to be confirmed. This study provides a first investigation of Hg transfer in the ecosystems of south western France and allows the assessment of the risk associated with the presence of Hg in aquatic food webs.

  9. Effects of selenium supplementation in cattle on aquatic ecosystems in northern California

    SciTech Connect

    Norman, B.; Nader, G.; Oliver, M.; Delmas, R.; Drake, D.; George, H. )

    1992-09-15

    The potential impact on aquatic ecosystems of supplementing the diets of beef cattle with selenium (Se) was studied on 4 northern California ranches. All study sites included an area of concentrated use by cattle that had diets supplemented with Se. In each case, a stream flowed through the site and provided a control sampling area upstream and a treated sampling area downstream. Specimens of water, sediment, algae, aquatic plants, aquatic invertebrates, and fish were analyzed fluorometrically for total Se content. Significant differences in Se concentration were not found between specimens from upstream control areas and those from downstream areas subjected to use by Se-treated cattle. Evidence was not found that Se supplementation in cattle at maximal permitted concentrations caused Se accumulation in associated aquatic ecosystems.

  10. Technology-Supported Inquiry for Learning about Aquatic Ecosystems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hmelo-Silver, Cindy E.; Eberbach, Catherine; Jordan, Rebecca

    2014-01-01

    Understanding ecosystems is challenging, but important for becoming environmentally-literate citizens of today's society. People have difficulty considering how different components, mechanisms, and phenomena, both visible and invisible, are interconnected within ecosystems. This research presents both the design and initial testing of an…

  11. Ecosystem-phase interactions: aquatic eutrophication decreases terrestrial plant diversity in California vernal pools.

    PubMed

    Kneitel, Jamie M; Lessin, Carrie L

    2010-06-01

    Eutrophication has long been known to negatively affect aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. In freshwater ecosystems, excessive nutrient input results in a shift from vascular plant dominance to algal dominance, while the nutrient-species richness relationship is found to be unimodal. Eutrophication studies are usually conducted in continuously aquatic or terrestrial habitats, but it is unclear how these patterns may be altered by temporal heterogeneity driven by precipitation and temperature variation. The California vernal pool (CVP) ecosystem consists of three distinct phases (aquatic, terrestrial, and dry) caused by variation in climatic conditions. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that resource addition during the aquatic phase results in increased algal abundance, which reduces vascular plant cover and richness of the terrestrial phase upon desiccation. We used mesocosms layered with CVP soil, in which treatments consisted of five levels of nitrogen and phosphorous added every 2 weeks. Resource addition increased available phosphorus levels and algae cover during the aquatic phase. Increased algal crusts resulted in decreased vascular plant percent cover and species richness. Few significant patterns were observed with individual plant species and total biomass. The phosphorus-plant richness relationship was not significant, but species composition was significantly different among the low and high treatment comparisons. These results highlight a neglected effect of eutrophication in seasonal habitats. Interactions among ecosystem phases clearly require more attention empirically and theoretically. Management and restoration of temporally heterogeneous habitat, such as the endemic-rich CVP, need to consider the extensive effects of increased nutrient input.

  12. Community ecology theory predicts the effects of agrochemical mixtures on aquatic biodiversity and ecosystem properties.

    PubMed

    Halstead, Neal T; McMahon, Taegan A; Johnson, Steve A; Raffel, Thomas R; Romansic, John M; Crumrine, Patrick W; Rohr, Jason R

    2014-08-01

    Ecosystems are often exposed to mixtures of chemical contaminants, but the scientific community lacks a theoretical framework to predict the effects of mixtures on biodiversity and ecosystem properties. We conducted a freshwater mesocosm experiment to examine the effects of pairwise agrochemical mixtures [fertiliser, herbicide (atrazine), insecticide (malathion) and fungicide (chlorothalonil)] on 24 species- and seven ecosystem-level responses. As postulated, the responses of biodiversity and ecosystem properties to agrochemicals alone and in mixtures was predictable by integrating information on each functional group's (1) sensitivity to the chemicals (direct effects), (2) reproductive rates (recovery rates), (3) interaction strength with other functional groups (indirect effects) and (4) links to ecosystem properties. These results show that community ecology theory holds promise for predicting the effects of contaminant mixtures on biodiversity and ecosystem services and yields recommendations on which types of agrochemicals to apply together and separately to reduce their impacts on aquatic ecosystems.

  13. Linking Aquatic Ecosystems to Human Well-Being

    EPA Science Inventory

    While ecological indicators should have relevance to people, a clear methodology to develop and evaluate this characteristic of ecological indicators is not well developed. Economists developed the concept of “Final Ecosystem Goods and Services”. Because these featur...

  14. Preventing, controlling, and managing alien species introduction for the health of aquatic and marine ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Short, C.I.; Gross, S.K.; Wilkinson, D.

    2004-01-01

    The introduction and spread of invasive species is an emerging global problem. As economic and ecological impacts continue to grow, there will be an increasing need to develop innovative solutions and global partnerships to combat the increasing rate of invasions and their accompanying impacts. Threats to sustainable fisheries in North America associated with alien species come from many global directions and sources and can be deliberate or the unintended consequence of other actions. Decisions about the role of sustainable fisheries in protecting and restoring the health of aquatic ecosystems become even more complex when economic and social factors are considered along with environmental impacts, because many intentionally introduced species also have associated economic and community costs and benefits. Actions designed to prevent or control alien species in an aquatic ecosystem are often complicated by these nonenvironmental factors as well as public perception and opinion. Aquatic ecosystems are disturbed to varying degrees by alien species, including disease organisms. Prevention is the first and best line of defense. Determining likely pathways and effective countermeasures is more cost-effective than either eradication or control. Our ability to quickly identify new species and their associated risk to ecosystems is critical in designing and implementing effective control and management actions. Lack of infrastructure and necessary resources, clear-cut authority for regulation and action, and scientific information about the biology of alien species and effective control techniques are often limiting factors that prevent the needed action to protect aquatic ecosystems.

  15. Production of EPA and DHA in aquatic ecosystems and their transfer to the land.

    PubMed

    Gladyshev, Michail I; Sushchik, Nadezhda N; Makhutova, Olesia N

    2013-12-01

    Most omnivorous animals, including humans, have to some degree relied on physiologically important polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) from food. Only some taxa of microalgae, rather than higher plants can synthesize de novo high amounts of EPA and DHA. Once synthesized by microalgae, PUFA are transferred through trophic chain to organisms of higher levels. Thus, aquatic ecosystems play the unique role in the Biosphere as the principal source of EPA and DHA for most omnivorous animals, including inhabitants of terrestrial ecosystems. PUFA are transferred from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems through riparian predators, drift of carrion and seaweeds, emergence of amphibiotic insects, and water birds. The essential PUFA are transferred through trophic chains with about twice higher efficiency than bulk carbon. Thereby, PUFA are accumulated, rather than diluted in biomass of organisms of higher trophic levels, e.g., in fish. Mankind is faced with a severe deficiency of EPA and DHA in diet. Although additional sources of PUFA supply for humans, such as aquaculture, biotechnology of microorganisms and transgenic terrestrial oil-seed producing plants are developed, natural fish production of aquatic ecosystems will remain one of the main sources of EPA and DHA for humans. Aquatic ecosystems have to be protected from anthropogenic impacts, such as eutrophication, pollution and warming, which reduce PUFA production.

  16. Use of mesocosm data to predict effects in aquatic ecosystems: Limits to interpretation: Chapter 16

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    La Point, Thomas W.; Fairchild, James F.; Graney, Robert L.; Kennedy, James H.; Rodgers, John H.

    1993-01-01

    Aquatic mesocosm studies are being used to refute a presumption of risk derived from laboratory toxicity tests conducted under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Mesocosm studies incorporate many biological, chemical and physical characteristics of natural ecosystems. Hence, they serve as realistic surrogates of natural ecosystems and allow tests of pesticide effect at the population, community, and ecosystem level. We discuss two factors, ecosystem trophic status and organism life history, which influence the results derived from aquatic mesocosm studies.  Trophic status influences the fat and effects of chemicals which strongly sorb or biologically degrade, yet may not be as important in the fate and effects of more water soluble chemicals.  Life history traits of organisms and the intensity, frequency, and duration of the pesticide disturbance also determine the mesocosm response pattern.

  17. Investigating aquatic ecosystems of small lakes in Khorezm, Uzbekistan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Saito, L.; Scott, J.; Rosen, M.; Nishonov, Bakhriddin; Chandra, S.; Lamers, John P.A.; Fayzieva, Dilorom; Shanafield, M.

    2009-01-01

    The Khorezm province of Uzbekistan, located in the Aral Sea Basin, suffers from severe environmental and human health problems due to decades of unsustainable land and water management. Agriculture is the dominant land use in Khorezm, and agricultural runoff water has impacted many small lakes. In this water-scarce region, these lakes may provide a water source for irrigation or fish production. Samples have been collected from 13 of these lakes since 2006 to assess water quality, the aquatic food web, and possible limits to aquatic production. Lake salinity varied from 1 to >10 g/L both between and within lakes. Although hydrophobic contaminants concentrations were low (82-241 pg toxic equivalents/mL in June 2006, October 2006, and June 2007), aquatic species diversity and relative density were low in most lakes. Ongoing work is focused on 4 lakes with pelagic food webs to estimate fish production and assess anthropogenic impacts on the food web. Lake sediment cores are also being examined for organic contaminants, and hydrology is being assessed with stable isotopes. ?? 2009 ASCE.

  18. Using Remotely Sensed Data and Hydrologic Models to Evaluate the Effects of Climate Change on Shallow Aquatic Ecosystems in the Mobile Bay, AL Estuary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estes, M. G.; Al-Hamdan, M. Z.; Thom, R.; Judd, C.; Woodruff, D.; Ellis, J. T.; Quattrochi, D.; Swann, R.

    2012-01-01

    Coastal systems in the northern Gulf of Mexico, including the Mobile Bay, AL estuary, are subject to increasing pressure from a variety of activities including climate change. Climate changes have a direct effect on the discharge of rivers that drain into Mobile Bay and adjacent coastal water bodies. The outflows change water quality (temperature, salinity, and sediment concentrations) in the shallow aquatic areas and affect ecosystem functioning. Mobile Bay is a vital ecosystem that provides habitat for many species of fauna and flora. Historically, submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and seagrasses were found in this area of the northern Gulf of Mexico; however the extent of vegetation has significantly decreased over the last 60 years. The objectives of this research are to determine: how climate changes affect runoff and water quality in the estuary and how these changes will affect habitat suitability for SAV and seagrasses. Our approach is to use watershed and hydrodynamic modeling to evaluate the impact of climate change on shallow water aquatic ecosystems in Mobile Bay and adjacent coastal areas. Remotely sensed Landsat data were used for current land cover land use (LCLU) model input and the data provided by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the future changes in temperature, precipitation, and sea level rise were used to create the climate scenarios for the 2025 and 2050 model simulations. Project results are being shared with Gulf coast stakeholders through the Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas to benefit coastal policy and climate change adaptation strategies.

  19. Using Remotely Sensed Data and Hydrologic Models to Evaluate the Effects of Climate Change on Shallow Aquatic Ecosystems in the Mobile Bay, AL Estuary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Estes, M. G.; Al-Hamdan, M. Z.; Thom, R.; Judd, C.; Ellis, J.; Woodruff, D.; Quattrochi, D.; Rose, K.; Swann, R.

    2012-12-01

    Coastal systems in the northern Gulf of Mexico, including the Mobile Bay, AL estuary, are subject to increasing pressure from a variety of activities including climate change. Climate changes have a direct effect on the discharge of rivers that drain into Mobile Bay and adjacent coastal water bodies. The outflows change water quality (temperature, salinity, and sediment concentrations) in the shallow aquatic areas and affect ecosystem functioning. Mobile Bay is a vital ecosystem that provides habitat for many species of fauna and flora. Historically, submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and seagrasses were found in this area of the northern Gulf of Mexico; however the extent of vegetation has significantly decreased over the last 60 years. The objectives of this research are to determine: how climate changes affect runoff and water quality in the estuary and how these changes will affect habitat suitability for SAV and seagrasses. Our approach is to use watershed and hydrodynamic modeling to evaluate the impact of climate change on shallow water aquatic ecosystems in Mobile Bay and adjacent coastal areas. Remotely sensed Landsat data were used for current land cover land use (LCLU) model input and the data provided by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the future changes in temperature, precipitation, and sea level rise were used to create the climate scenarios for the 2025 and 2050 model simulations. Project results are being shared with Gulf coast stakeholders through the Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas to benefit coastal policy and climate change adaptation strategies.

  20. Testing a 'genes-to-ecosystems' approach to understanding aquatic-terrestrial linkages.

    PubMed

    Crutsinger, Gregory M; Rudman, Seth M; Rodriguez-Cabal, Mariano A; McKown, Athena D; Sato, Takuya; MacDonald, Andrew M; Heavyside, Julian; Geraldes, Armando; Hart, Edmund M; LeRoy, Carri J; El-Sabaawi, Rana W

    2014-12-01

    A 'genes-to-ecosystems' approach has been proposed as a novel avenue for integrating the consequences of intraspecific genetic variation with the underlying genetic architecture of a species to shed light on the relationships among hierarchies of ecological organization (genes → individuals → communities → ecosystems). However, attempts to identify genes with major effect on the structure of communities and/or ecosystem processes have been limited and a comprehensive test of this approach has yet to emerge. Here, we present an interdisciplinary field study that integrated a common garden containing different genotypes of a dominant, riparian tree, Populus trichocarpa, and aquatic mesocosms to determine how intraspecific variation in leaf litter alters both terrestrial and aquatic communities and ecosystem functioning. Moreover, we incorporate data from extensive trait screening and genome-wide association studies estimating the heritability and genes associated with litter characteristics. We found that tree genotypes varied considerably in the quality and production of leaf litter, which contributed to variation in phytoplankton abundances, as well as nutrient dynamics and light availability in aquatic mesocosms. These 'after-life' effects of litter from different genotypes were comparable to the responses of terrestrial communities associated with the living foliage. We found that multiple litter traits corresponding with aquatic community and ecosystem responses differed in their heritability. Moreover, the underlying genetic architecture of these traits was complex, and many genes contributed only a small proportion to phenotypic variation. Our results provide further evidence that genetic variation is a key component of aquatic-terrestrial linkages, but challenge the ability to predict community or ecosystem responses based on the actions of one or a few genes.

  1. Bioavailability and distribution and of ceria nanoparticles in simulated aquatic ecosystems, quantification with a radiotracer technique.

    PubMed

    Lu, Kai; Zhang, Zhiyong; He, Xiao; Ma, Yuhui; Zhou, Kebin; Zhang, Haifeng; Bai, Wei; Ding, Yayun; Wu, Zhenqiang; Zhao, Yuliang; Chai, Zhifang

    2010-12-01

    Although the presence of manufactured nanoparticles in the aquatic environment is still largely undocumented, their release could certainly occur in the future, particularly via municipal treatment plant effluents of cities supporting nano-industries. To get an initial estimate of the environmental behavior of nanomaterials, we investigated the distribution and accumulation of ceria nanoparticles in simulated aquatic ecosystems which included aquatic plant, shellfish, fish, water, and sediment using a radiotracer technique. Radioactive ceria (141CeO2) nanoparticles with a diameter of ca. 7 nm were synthesized by a precipitation method and added to the simulated aquatic ecosystems. The results indicate that the concentration of ceria nanoparticles in water decreased to a steady-state value after 3 days; meanwhile, the concentrations of ceria nanoparticles in the aquatic plant and sediment increased to their highest values. The distribution and accumulation characteristics of ceria nanoparticles in various aquatic organisms were different. Ceratophyllum demersum showed a high ability of accumulation of ceria nanoparticles from water.

  2. Toxic metals in aquatic ecosystems: a microbiological perspective.

    PubMed

    Ford, T; Ryan, D

    1995-02-01

    Microbe-metal interactions in aquatic environments and their exact role in transport and transformations of toxic metals are poorly understood. This paper will briefly review our understanding of these interactions. Ongoing research in Lake Chapala, Mexico, the major water source for the City of Guadalajara, provides an opportunity to study the microbiological aspects of metal-cycling in the water column. Constant resuspension of sediments provides a microbiologically rich aggregate-based system. Data indicate that toxic metals are concentrated on aggregate material and bioaccumulate in the food chain. A provisional model is presented for involvement of microbial aggregates in metal-cycling in Lake Chapala.

  3. Toxic metals in aquatic ecosystems: a microbiological perspective.

    PubMed Central

    Ford, T; Ryan, D

    1995-01-01

    Microbe-metal interactions in aquatic environments and their exact role in transport and transformations of toxic metals are poorly understood. This paper will briefly review our understanding of these interactions. Ongoing research in Lake Chapala, Mexico, the major water source for the City of Guadalajara, provides an opportunity to study the microbiological aspects of metal-cycling in the water column. Constant resuspension of sediments provides a microbiologically rich aggregate-based system. Data indicate that toxic metals are concentrated on aggregate material and bioaccumulate in the food chain. A provisional model is presented for involvement of microbial aggregates in metal-cycling in Lake Chapala. PMID:7621793

  4. Thermal Change and the Dynamics of Multi-Host Parasite Life Cycles in Aquatic Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Barber, Iain; Berkhout, Boris W.; Ismail, Zalina

    2016-01-01

    Altered thermal regimes associated with climate change are impacting significantly on the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of the Earth’s natural ecosystems, with important implications for the biology of aquatic organisms. As well as impacting the biology of individual species, changing thermal regimes have the capacity to mediate ecological interactions between species, and the potential for climate change to impact host–parasite interactions in aquatic ecosystems is now well recognized. Predicting what will happen to the prevalence and intensity of infection of parasites with multiple hosts in their life cycles is especially challenging because the addition of each additional host dramatically increases the potential permutations of response. In this short review, we provide an overview of the diverse routes by which altered thermal regimes can impact the dynamics of multi-host parasite life cycles in aquatic ecosystems. In addition, we examine how experimentally amenable host–parasite systems are being used to determine the consequences of changing environmental temperatures for these different types of mechanism. Our overarching aim is to examine the potential of changing thermal regimes to alter not only the biology of hosts and parasites, but also the biology of interactions between hosts and parasites. We also hope to illustrate the complexity that is likely to be involved in making predictions about the dynamics of infection by multi-host parasites in thermally challenged aquatic ecosystems. PMID:27252219

  5. Riparian spiders as sentinels of polychlorinated biphenyl contamination across heterogeneous aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kraus, Johanna M.; Gibson, Polly P.; Walters, David M.; Mills, Marc A.

    2016-01-01

    Riparian spiders are being used increasingly to track spatial patterns of contaminants in and fluxing from aquatic ecosystems.However, our understanding of the circumstances under which spiders are effective sentinels of aquatic pollution is limited. The present study tests the hypothesis that riparian spiders may be effectively used to track spatial patterns of sediment pollution by polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in aquatic ecosystems with high habitat heterogeneity. The spatial pattern of ΣPCB concentrations in 2 common families of riparian spiders sampled in 2011 to 2013 generally tracked spatial variation in sediment ΣPCBs across all sites within the Manistique River Great Lakes Area of Concern (AOC), a rivermouth ecosystem located on the south shore of the Upper Peninsula, Manistique (MI,USA) that includes harbor, river, backwater, and lake habitats. Sediment ΣPCB concentrations normalized for total organic carbon explained 41% of the variation in lipid-normalized spider ΣPCB concentrations across 11 sites. Furthermore, 2 common riparian spider taxa (Araneidae and Tetragnathidae) were highly correlated (r2> 0.78) and had similar mean ΣPCB concentrations when averaged acrossall years. The results indicate that riparian spiders may be useful sentinels of relative PCB availability to aquatic and riparian food webs in heterogeneous aquatic ecosystems like rivermouths where habitat and contaminant variability may make the use of aquatic taxa lesseffective. Furthermore, the present approach appears robust to heterogeneity in shoreline development and riparian vegetation that support different families of large web-building spiders. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;9999:1–9. Published 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of SETAC. This article is a US government work and, as such, is in the public domain in the United States of America.

  6. Palladium Nanoparticles: Is There a Risk for Aquatic Ecosystems?

    PubMed

    Lüderwald, Simon; Seitz, Frank; Seisenbaeva, Gulaim A; Kessler, Vadim G; Schulz, Ralf; Bundschuh, Mirco

    2016-08-01

    Nano-sized palladium (nano-Pd) is used in catalytic converters of automobiles, where it can be released into the environment by abrasion. Although these particles may subsequently be transported into surface water bodies, no data estimating their fate and toxicity in aquatic systems exists. This study characterized the particle size development of nano-Pd (advertised size ~12 nm; hydrodynamic size ~70 nm) in media with variable ionic strength (IS). Additionally, the particles' acute toxicity for daphnids and chironomids was assessed. While nano-Pd agglomerated more quickly with increasing IS, it caused only marginal effects in both test species after 96 h of exposure. After 144 h of exposure, however, an EC50 value of 1.23 mg nano-Pd/L for daphnids was determined indicating effects over the long run. When considering the relatively low environmental concentration of elemental Pd in surface waters (usually ng/L), though, this study suggests only a low aquatic risk in response to nano-Pd.

  7. Aquatic polymers can drive pathogen transmission in coastal ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Shapiro, Karen; Krusor, Colin; Mazzillo, Fernanda F M; Conrad, Patricia A; Largier, John L; Mazet, Jonna A K; Silver, Mary W

    2014-11-22

    Gelatinous polymers including extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs) are fundamental to biophysical processes in aquatic habitats, including mediating aggregation processes and functioning as the matrix of biofilms. Yet insight into the impact of these sticky molecules on the environmental transmission of pathogens in the ocean is limited. We used the zoonotic parasite Toxoplasma gondii as a model to evaluate polymer-mediated mechanisms that promote transmission of terrestrially derived pathogens to marine fauna and humans. We show that transparent exopolymer particles, a particulate form of EPS, enhance T. gondii association with marine aggregates, material consumed by organisms otherwise unable to access micrometre-sized particles. Adhesion to EPS biofilms on macroalgae also captures T. gondii from the water, enabling uptake of pathogens by invertebrates that feed on kelp surfaces. We demonstrate the acquisition, concentration and retention of T. gondii by kelp-grazing snails, which can transmit T. gondii to threatened California sea otters. Results highlight novel mechanisms whereby aquatic polymers facilitate incorporation of pathogens into food webs via association with particle aggregates and biofilms. Identifying the critical role of invisible polymers in transmission of pathogens in the ocean represents a fundamental advance in understanding and mitigating the health impacts of coastal habitat pollution with contaminated runoff.

  8. Global warming benefits the small in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Daufresne, Martin; Lengfellner, Kathrin; Sommer, Ulrich

    2009-08-04

    Understanding the ecological impacts of climate change is a crucial challenge of the twenty-first century. There is a clear lack of general rules regarding the impacts of global warming on biota. Here, we present a metaanalysis of the effect of climate change on body size of ectothermic aquatic organisms (bacteria, phyto- and zooplankton, and fish) from the community to the individual level. Using long-term surveys, experimental data and published results, we show a significant increase in the proportion of small-sized species and young age classes and a decrease in size-at-age. These results are in accordance with the ecological rules dealing with the temperature-size relationships (i.e., Bergmann's rule, James' rule and Temperature-Size Rule). Our study provides evidence that reduced body size is the third universal ecological response to global warming in aquatic systems besides the shift of species ranges toward higher altitudes and latitudes and the seasonal shifts in life cycle events.

  9. Aquatic polymers can drive pathogen transmission in coastal ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Shapiro, Karen; Krusor, Colin; Mazzillo, Fernanda F. M.; Conrad, Patricia A.; Largier, John L.; Mazet, Jonna A. K.; Silver, Mary W.

    2014-01-01

    Gelatinous polymers including extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs) are fundamental to biophysical processes in aquatic habitats, including mediating aggregation processes and functioning as the matrix of biofilms. Yet insight into the impact of these sticky molecules on the environmental transmission of pathogens in the ocean is limited. We used the zoonotic parasite Toxoplasma gondii as a model to evaluate polymer-mediated mechanisms that promote transmission of terrestrially derived pathogens to marine fauna and humans. We show that transparent exopolymer particles, a particulate form of EPS, enhance T. gondii association with marine aggregates, material consumed by organisms otherwise unable to access micrometre-sized particles. Adhesion to EPS biofilms on macroalgae also captures T. gondii from the water, enabling uptake of pathogens by invertebrates that feed on kelp surfaces. We demonstrate the acquisition, concentration and retention of T. gondii by kelp-grazing snails, which can transmit T. gondii to threatened California sea otters. Results highlight novel mechanisms whereby aquatic polymers facilitate incorporation of pathogens into food webs via association with particle aggregates and biofilms. Identifying the critical role of invisible polymers in transmission of pathogens in the ocean represents a fundamental advance in understanding and mitigating the health impacts of coastal habitat pollution with contaminated runoff. PMID:25297861

  10. Global warming benefits the small in aquatic ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Daufresne, Martin; Lengfellner, Kathrin; Sommer, Ulrich

    2009-01-01

    Understanding the ecological impacts of climate change is a crucial challenge of the twenty-first century. There is a clear lack of general rules regarding the impacts of global warming on biota. Here, we present a metaanalysis of the effect of climate change on body size of ectothermic aquatic organisms (bacteria, phyto- and zooplankton, and fish) from the community to the individual level. Using long-term surveys, experimental data and published results, we show a significant increase in the proportion of small-sized species and young age classes and a decrease in size-at-age. These results are in accordance with the ecological rules dealing with the temperature–size relationships (i.e., Bergmann's rule, James' rule and Temperature–Size Rule). Our study provides evidence that reduced body size is the third universal ecological response to global warming in aquatic systems besides the shift of species ranges toward higher altitudes and latitudes and the seasonal shifts in life cycle events. PMID:19620720

  11. Potential Effects of Climate Change on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Great Plains of North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Covich, A. P.; Fritz, S. C.; Lamb, P. J.; Marzolf, R. D.; Matthews, W. J.; Poiani, K. A.; Prepas, E. E.; Richman, M. B.; Winter, T. C.

    1997-06-01

    The Great Plains landscape is less topographically complex than most other regions within North America, but diverse aquatic ecosystems, such as playas, pothole lakes, ox-bow lakes, springs, groundwater aquifers, intermittent and ephemeral streams, as well as large rivers and wetlands, are highly dynamic and responsive to extreme climatic fluctuations. We review the evidence for climatic change that demonstrates the historical importance of extremes in north-south differences in summer temperatures and east-west differences in aridity across four large subregions. These physical driving forces alter density stratification, deoxygenation, decomposition and salinity. Biotic community composition and associated ecosystem processes of productivity and nutrient cycling respond rapidly to these climatically driven dynamics. Ecosystem processes also respond to cultural effects such as dams and diversions of water for irrigation, waste dilution and urban demands for drinking water and industrial uses. Distinguishing climatic from cultural effects in future models of aquatic ecosystem functioning will require more refinement in both climatic and economic forecasting. There is a need, for example, to predict how long-term climatic forecasts (based on both ENSO and global warming simulations) relate to the permanence and productivity of shallow water ecosystems. Aquatic ecologists, hydrologists, climatologists and geographers have much to discuss regarding the synthesis of available data and the design of future interdisciplinary research.

  12. Respiration-photosynthesis balance of terrestrial aquatic ecosystems, Ottawa area, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xuefeng; Veizer, Jan

    2000-11-01

    Rivers link terrestrial and marine biospheres by transporting carbon from land to ocean and by exchanging CO 2 with the atmosphere. In an attempt to quantify the aquatic carbon cycle, we developed a technique based on carbon isotopic composition of dissolved inorganic carbon (δ 13C DIC) and oxygen isotopic composition of dissolved oxygen (δ 18O DO). The approach was tested on selected boreal ecosystems in the Ottawa area, Canada: Meech Lake; the Ottawa River; and Green Creek, the latter dewatering the Mer Bleue bog. The three ecosystems were monitored for 1 yr and the calculated aquatic respiration/photosynthesis ratios in general fell within the 1 to 3.5 ranges. The ecosystems were respiration dominated year-round, despite increased photosynthetic rates during the warm season, a development that was apparently matched by a comparable enhancement in respiration rates. The year-round predominance of respiration over photosynthesis supports the results of earlier studies, showing that boreal aquatic ecosystems, particularly the lakes, are not solely dissipation pathways for soil-generated CO 2 introduced into surficial water bodies by groundwater input. To fuel this year-round "excess" respiration, the steady state balance consideration demands that the ecosystem must have a continuous supply of allochthonous reduced carbon.

  13. Potential effects of climate change on aquatic ecosystems of the Great Plains of North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Covich, A.P.; Fritz, S.C.; Lamb, P.J.; Marzolf, R.D.; Matthews, W.J.; Poiani, K.A.; Prepas, E.E.; Richman, M.B.; Winter, T.C.

    1997-01-01

    The Great Plains landscape is less topographically complex than most other regions within North America, but diverse aquatic ecosystems, such as playas, pothole lakes, ox-bow lakes, springs, groundwater aquifers, intermittent and ephemeral streams, as well as large rivers and wetlands, are highly dynamic and responsive to extreme climatic fluctuations. We review the evidence for climatic change that demonstrates the historical importance of extremes in north-south differences in summer temperatures and east-west differences in aridity across four large subregions. These physical driving forces alter density stratification, deoxygenation, decomposition and salinity. Biotic community composition and associated ecosystem processes of productivity and nutrient cycling respond rapidly to these climatically driven dynamics. Ecosystem processes also respond to cultural effects such as dams and diversions of water for irrigation, waste dilution and urban demands for drinking water and industrial uses. Distinguishing climatic from cultural effects in future models of aquatic ecosystem functioning will require more refinement in both climatic and economic forecasting. There is a need, for example, to predict how long-term climatic forecasts (based on both ENSO and global warming simulations) relate to the permanence and productivity of shallow water ecosystems. Aquatic ecologists, hydrologists, climatologists and geographers have much to discuss regarding the synthesis of available data and the design of future interdisciplinary research. ?? 1997 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  14. Fundamental study on magnetic separation of aquatic organisms for preservation of marine ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakaguchi, F.; Akiyama, Y.; Izumi, Y.; Nishijima, S.

    2009-10-01

    Recently, destruction and disturbance of marine ecosystem have been caused by changes in global environment and transplants of farmed fishes and shellfishes. To solve the problems, water treatment techniques to kill or to remove aquatic organisms are necessary. In this study, application of magnetic separation for removal of the aquatic organisms was examined in order to establish the process with high-speed, compact device and low environmental load. Techniques of magnetic seeding and magnetic separation using superconducting magnet are important for high-speed processing of aquatic organisms. Magnetic seeding is to adhere separating object to the surface of ferromagnetic particles, and magnetic separation is to remove aquatic organisms with magnetic force. First, we confirmed the possibility of magnetic seeding of aquatic organisms, and then interaction between aquatic organisms and ferromagnetic particles was examined. Next, for practical application of magnetic separation system using superconducting magnet for removal of aquatic organisms, particle trajectories were simulated and magnetic separation experiment using superconducting magnet was performed in order to design magnetic separation system to achieve high separation efficiency.

  15. The influence of glacial meltwater on alpine aquatic ecosystems: a review.

    PubMed

    Slemmons, Krista E H; Saros, Jasmine E; Simon, Kevin

    2013-10-01

    The recent and rapid recession of alpine glaciers over the last 150 years has major implications for associated aquatic communities. Glacial meltwater shapes many of the physical features of high altitude lakes and streams, producing turbid environments with distinctive hydrology patterns relative to nival systems. Over the past decade, numerous studies have investigated the chemical and biological effects of glacial meltwater on freshwater ecosystems. Here, we review these studies across both lake and stream ecosystems. Focusing on alpine regions mainly in the Northern Hemisphere, we present examples of how glacial meltwater can affect habitat by altering physical and chemical features of aquatic ecosystems, and review the subsequent effects on the biological structure and function of lakes and streams. Collectively or separately, these factors can drive the overall distribution, diversity and behavior of primary producers, triggering cascading effects throughout the food web. We conclude by proposing areas for future research, particularly in regions where glaciers are soon projected to disappear.

  16. Biophysical interactions in fluvial ecosystems: effects of submerged aquatic macrophytes on hydro-morphological processes and ecosystem functioning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornacchia, Loreta; Davies, Grieg; Grabowski, Robert; van der Wal, Daphne; van de Koppel, Johan; Wharton, Geraldene; Bouma, Tjeerd

    2016-04-01

    Strong mutual interactions occur at the interface between biota and physical processes in biogeomorphic ecosystems, possibly resulting in self-organized spatial patterns. While these interactions and feedbacks have been increasingly studied in a wide range of landscapes previously, they are still poorly understood in lower energy fluvial systems. Consequently, their impact on the functioning of aquatic ecosystems is largely unknown. In this study we investigate the role of aquatic macrophytes as biological engineers of flow and sediment in lowland streams dominated by water crowfoot (Ranunculus spp.). Using field measurements from two annual growth cycles, we demonstrate that seasonally-changing macrophyte cover maintains relative constant flow rates, both within and between vegetation, despite temporal changes in channel flow discharge. By means of a mathematical model representing the interaction between hydrodynamics and vegetation dynamics, we reveal that scale-dependent feedbacks between plant growth and flow redistribution explain the influence of macrophytes on stabilizing flow rates. Our analysis reveals important implications for ecosystem functions. The creation of fast-flowing channels allows an adequate conveyance of water throughout the annual cycle; yet, patches also have a significant influence on sediment dynamics leading to heterogeneous habitats, thereby facilitating other species. As a last step we investigate the consequences on stream ecosystem functioning, by exploring the relationship between changes in macrophyte cover and the provision of different ecosystem functions (e.g. water conveyance, sediment trapping). Our results highlight that self-organization promotes the combination of multiple ecosystem functions through its effects on hydrological and morphological processes within biogeomorphic ecosystems.

  17. Fire effects on aquatic ecosystems: an assessment of the current state of the science

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rebecca J. Bixby,; Scott D. Cooper,; Gresswell, Bob; Lee E. Brown,; Clifford N. Dahm,; Kathleen A. Dwire,

    2015-01-01

    Fire is a prevalent feature of many landscapes and has numerous and complex effects on geological, hydrological, ecological, and economic systems. In some regions, the frequency and intensity of wildfire have increased in recent years and are projected to escalate with predicted climatic and landuse changes. In addition, prescribed burns continue to be used in many parts of the world to clear vegetation for development projects, encourage desired vegetation, and reduce fuel loads. Given the prevalence of fire on the landscape, authors of papers in this special series examine the complexities of fire as a disturbance shaping freshwater ecosystems and highlight the state of the science. These papers cover key aspects of fire effects that range from vegetation loss and recovery in watersheds to effects on hydrology and water quality with consequences for communities (from algae to fish), food webs, and ecosystem processes (e.g., organic matter subsidies, nutrient cycling) across a range of scales. The results presented in this special series of articles expand our knowledge of fire effects in different biomes, water bodies, and geographic regions, encompassing aquatic population, community, and ecosystem responses. In this overview, we summarize each paper and emphasize its contributions to knowledge on fire ecology and freshwater ecosystems. This overview concludes with a list of 7 research foci that are needed to further our knowledge of fire effects on aquatic ecosystems, including research on: 1) additional biomes and geographic regions; 2) additional habitats, including wetlands and lacustrine ecosystems; 3) different fire severities, sizes, and spatial configurations; and 4) additional response variables (e.g., ecosystem processes) 5) over long (>5 y) time scales 6) with more rigorous study designs and data analyses, and 7) consideration of the effects of fire management practices and policies on aquatic ecosystems.

  18. Effects of UV radiation on aquatic ecosystems and interactions with climate change.

    PubMed

    Häder, D-P; Helbling, E W; Williamson, C E; Worrest, R C

    2011-02-01

    The health of freshwater and marine ecosystems is critical to life on Earth. The impact of solar UV-B radiation is one potential stress factor that can have a negative impact on the health of certain species within these ecosystems. Although there is a paucity of data and information regarding the effect of UV-B radiation on total ecosystem structure and function, several recent studies have addressed the effects on various species within each trophic level. Climate change, acid deposition, and changes in other anthropogenic stressors such as pollutants alter UV exposure levels in inland and coastal marine waters. These factors potentially have important consequences for a variety of aquatic organisms including waterborne human pathogens. Recent results have demonstrated the negative impacts of exposure to UV-B radiation on primary producers, including effects on cyanobacteria, phytoplankton, macroalgae and aquatic plants. UV-B radiation is an environmental stressor for many aquatic consumers, including zooplankton, crustaceans, amphibians, fish, and corals. Many aquatic producers and consumers rely on avoidance strategies, repair mechanisms and the synthesis of UV-absorbing substances for protection. However, there has been relatively little information generated regarding the impact of solar UV-B radiation on species composition within natural ecosystems or on the interaction of organisms between trophic levels within those ecosystems. There remains the question as to whether a decrease in population size of the more sensitive primary producers would be compensated for by an increase in the population size of more tolerant species, and therefore whether there would be a net negative impact on the absorption of atmospheric carbon dioxide by these ecosystems. Another question is whether there would be a significant impact on the quantity and quality of nutrients cycling through the food web, including the generation of food proteins for humans. Interactive effects

  19. Assessing the potential for algae and macrophytes to degrade crop protection products in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Kevin A; Hand, Laurence H

    2011-03-01

    Rates of pesticide degradation in aquatic ecosystems often differ between those observed within laboratory studies and field trials. Under field conditions, a number of additional processes may well have a significant role, yet are excluded from standard laboratory studies, for example, metabolism by aquatic plants, phytoplankton, and periphyton. These constituents of natural aquatic ecosystems have been shown to be capable of metabolizing a range of crop protection products. Here we report the rate of degradation of six crop protection products assessed in parallel in three systems, under reproducible, defined laboratory conditions, designed to compare aquatic sediment systems which exclude macrophytes and algae against those in which macrophytes and/or algae are included. All three systems remained as close as possible to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) 308 guidelines, assessing degradation of parent compound in the total system in mass balanced studies using ((14) C) labeled compounds. We observed, in all cases where estimated, significant increases in the rate of degradation in both the algae and macrophyte systems when compared to the standard systems. By assessing total system degradation within closed, mass balanced studies, we have shown that rates of degradation are enhanced in water/sediment systems that include macrophytes and algae. The contribution of these communities should therefore be considered if the aquatic fate of pesticides is to be fully understood.

  20. Effects of solar UV radiation on aquatic ecosystems and interactions with climate change.

    PubMed

    Häder, D-P; Kumar, H D; Smith, R C; Worrest, R C

    2007-03-01

    Recent results continue to show the general consensus that ozone-related increases in UV-B radiation can negatively influence many aquatic species and aquatic ecosystems (e.g., lakes, rivers, marshes, oceans). Solar UV radiation penetrates to ecological significant depths in aquatic systems and can affect both marine and freshwater systems from major biomass producers (phytoplankton) to consumers (e.g., zooplankton, fish, etc.) higher in the food web. Many factors influence the depth of penetration of radiation into natural waters including dissolved organic compounds whose concentration and chemical composition are likely to be influenced by future climate and UV radiation variability. There is also considerable evidence that aquatic species utilize many mechanisms for photoprotection against excessive radiation. Often, these protective mechanisms pose conflicting selection pressures on species making UV radiation an additional stressor on the organism. It is at the ecosystem level where assessments of anthropogenic climate change and UV-related effects are interrelated and where much recent research has been directed. Several studies suggest that the influence of UV-B at the ecosystem level may be more pronounced on community and trophic level structure, and hence on subsequent biogeochemical cycles, than on biomass levels per se.

  1. Impact of petroleum pollution on aquatic coastal ecosystems in Brazil

    SciTech Connect

    Silva, E.M. da; Peso-Aguiar, M.C.; Navarro, M.F.T.; Chastinet, C.B.A.

    1997-01-01

    Although oil activities generate numerous forms of environmental impact on biological communities, studies of these impacts on Brazilian coastal ecosystems are rate. Results of tests for the content of oil in sediments and organisms indicate a substantially high rate of degradation. Results for uptake of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in bivalves suggested the recent occurrence of oil spills and that these organisms differed in their capabilities to bioconcentrate oil. The mangrove community has suffered constant inputs of oil and has responded with increased numbers of aerial roots, generation of malformed leaves and fruits by plants, and a decrease in litter production. Studies of the impact of oil on rocky shore communities and the toxicity of oil and its by-products to marine organisms have confirmed the results reported in the literature. Presently most of the available studies deal with the macroscopic effects of oil on organisms and have indicated that the nature of oil, climate characteristics, the physical environment, and the structure of the community influence the symptoms of oil contamination in organisms of coastal waters. Long-term studies should be carried out to assess changes in community structure, sublethal effects in populations, and the resilience of contaminated ecosystems.

  2. Phylogenetic signal in diatom ecology: perspectives for aquatic ecosystems biomonitoring.

    PubMed

    Keck, François; Rimet, Frédéric; Franc, Alain; Bouchez, Agnés

    2016-04-01

    Diatoms include a great diversity of taxa and are recognized as powerful bioindicators in rivers. However using diatoms for monitoring programs is costly and time consuming because most of the methodologies necessitate species-level identification. This raises the question of the optimal trade-off between taxonomic resolution and bioassessment quality. Phylogenetic tools may form the bases of new, more efficient approaches for biomonitoring if relationships between ecology and phylogeny can be demonstrated. We estimated the ecological optima of 127 diatom species for 19 environmental parameters using count data from 2119 diatom communities sampled during eight years in eastern France. Using uni- and multivariate analyses, we explored the relationships between freshwater diatom phylogeny and ecology (i.e., the phylogenetic signal). We found a significant phylogenetic signal for many of the ecological optima that were tested, but the strength of the signal varied significantly from one trait to another. Multivariate analysis also showed that the multidimensional ecological niche of diatoms can be strongly related to phylogeny. The presence of clades containing species that exhibit homogeneous ecology suggests that phylogenetic information can be useful for aquatic biomonitoring. This study highlights the presence of significant patterns of ecological optima for freshwater diatoms in relation to their phylogeny. These results suggest the presence of a signal above the species level, which is encouraging for the development of simplified methods for biomonitoring survey.

  3. Modeling an aquatic ecosystem: application of an evolutionary algorithm with genetic doping to reduce prediction uncertainty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Friedel, Michael; Buscema, Massimo

    2016-04-01

    Aquatic ecosystem models can potentially be used to understand the influence of stresses on catchment resource quality. Given that catchment responses are functions of natural and anthropogenic stresses reflected in sparse and spatiotemporal biological, physical, and chemical measurements, an ecosystem is difficult to model using statistical or numerical methods. We propose an artificial adaptive systems approach to model ecosystems. First, an unsupervised machine-learning (ML) network is trained using the set of available sparse and disparate data variables. Second, an evolutionary algorithm with genetic doping is applied to reduce the number of ecosystem variables to an optimal set. Third, the optimal set of ecosystem variables is used to retrain the ML network. Fourth, a stochastic cross-validation approach is applied to quantify and compare the nonlinear uncertainty in selected predictions of the original and reduced models. Results are presented for aquatic ecosystems (tens of thousands of square kilometers) undergoing landscape change in the USA: Upper Illinois River Basin and Central Colorado Assessment Project Area, and Southland region, NZ.

  4. Carbon and nitrogen isotope studies in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1989-01-01

    The Phase II studies of the R4D Program on stream and watershed ecology reflect the accomplishments and accumulation of baseline information obtained during the past studies. Although our rough estimates indicate that nitrogen inputs to the watershed ba lance losses, the carbon fluxes suggest that they are not in equilibrium and that there is a net loss of carbon from the tundra ecosystem through respiration and transport out of the watershed via the stream system. Radiocarbon profiles of soil sections coupled with mass transport calculations revealed that peat accumulation has essentially ceased in the R4D watershed and appears to be in ablative loss. Thus the carbon flux measurements provide validation tests for the PLANTGRO and GAS-HYDRO models of the PHASE II studies. These findings are also important in the context of global CO[sub 2] increases from positive feedback mechanisms in peatlands associated with climatic warming in the subarctic regions.

  5. Carbon and nitrogen isotope studies in an arctic aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Schell, D.M.

    1989-12-31

    The Phase II studies of the R4D Program on stream and watershed ecology reflect the accomplishments and accumulation of baseline information obtained during the past studies. Although our rough estimates indicate that nitrogen inputs to the watershed ba lance losses, the carbon fluxes suggest that they are not in equilibrium and that there is a net loss of carbon from the tundra ecosystem through respiration and transport out of the watershed via the stream system. Radiocarbon profiles of soil sections coupled with mass transport calculations revealed that peat accumulation has essentially ceased in the R4D watershed and appears to be in ablative loss. Thus the carbon flux measurements provide validation tests for the PLANTGRO and GAS-HYDRO models of the PHASE II studies. These findings are also important in the context of global CO{sub 2} increases from positive feedback mechanisms in peatlands associated with climatic warming in the subarctic regions.

  6. Heavy Metal Pollution Characteristics of Surface Sediments in Different Aquatic Ecosystems in Eastern China: A Comprehensive Understanding

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Wenzhong; Shan, Baoqing; Zhang, Wenqiang; Zhang, Hong; Wang, Lishuo; Ding, Yuekui

    2014-01-01

    Aquatic ecosystems in eastern China are suffering threats from heavy metal pollution because of rapid economic development and urbanization. Heavy metals in surface sediments were determined in five different aquatic ecosystems (river, reservoir, estuary, lake, and wetland ecosystems). The average Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn concentrations were 0.716, 118, 37.3, 32.7, 56.6, and 204 mg/kg, respectively, and the higher concentrations were mainly found in sediment samples from river ecosystems. Cd was the most anthropogenically enriched pollutant, followed by Zn and Pb, indicated by enrichment factors >1.5. According to consensus-based sediment quality guidelines, potential ecological risk indices, and risk assessment codes, all five types of aquatic ecosystems were found to be polluted with heavy metals, and the most polluted ecosystems were mainly rivers. Cd was the most serious pollutant in all five aquatic ecosystems, and it was mainly found in the exchangeable fraction (about 30% of the total Cd concentration, on average). The results indicate that heavy metal contamination, especially of Cd, in aquatic ecosystems in eastern China should be taken into account in the development of management strategies for protecting the aquatic environment. PMID:25268385

  7. Heavy metal pollution characteristics of surface sediments in different aquatic ecosystems in eastern China: a comprehensive understanding.

    PubMed

    Tang, Wenzhong; Shan, Baoqing; Zhang, Wenqiang; Zhang, Hong; Wang, Lishuo; Ding, Yuekui

    2014-01-01

    Aquatic ecosystems in eastern China are suffering threats from heavy metal pollution because of rapid economic development and urbanization. Heavy metals in surface sediments were determined in five different aquatic ecosystems (river, reservoir, estuary, lake, and wetland ecosystems). The average Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn concentrations were 0.716, 118, 37.3, 32.7, 56.6, and 204 mg/kg, respectively, and the higher concentrations were mainly found in sediment samples from river ecosystems. Cd was the most anthropogenically enriched pollutant, followed by Zn and Pb, indicated by enrichment factors >1.5. According to consensus-based sediment quality guidelines, potential ecological risk indices, and risk assessment codes, all five types of aquatic ecosystems were found to be polluted with heavy metals, and the most polluted ecosystems were mainly rivers. Cd was the most serious pollutant in all five aquatic ecosystems, and it was mainly found in the exchangeable fraction (about 30% of the total Cd concentration, on average). The results indicate that heavy metal contamination, especially of Cd, in aquatic ecosystems in eastern China should be taken into account in the development of management strategies for protecting the aquatic environment.

  8. Diversity and Expression of Bacterial Metacaspases in an Aquatic Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Asplund-Samuelsson, Johannes; Sundh, John; Dupont, Chris L; Allen, Andrew E; McCrow, John P; Celepli, Narin A; Bergman, Birgitta; Ininbergs, Karolina; Ekman, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Metacaspases are distant homologs of metazoan caspase proteases, implicated in stress response, and programmed cell death (PCD) in bacteria and phytoplankton. While the few previous studies on metacaspases have relied on cultured organisms and sequenced genomes, no studies have focused on metacaspases in a natural setting. We here present data from the first microbial community-wide metacaspase survey; performed by querying metagenomic and metatranscriptomic datasets from the brackish Baltic Sea, a water body characterized by pronounced environmental gradients and periods of massive cyanobacterial blooms. Metacaspase genes were restricted to ~4% of the bacteria, taxonomically affiliated mainly to Bacteroidetes, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria and Cyanobacteria. The gene abundance was significantly higher in larger or particle-associated bacteria (>0.8 μm), and filamentous Cyanobacteria dominated metacaspase gene expression throughout the bloom season. Distinct seasonal expression patterns were detected for the three metacaspase genes in Nodularia spumigena, one of the main bloom-formers. Clustering of normalized gene expression in combination with analyses of genomic and assembly data suggest functional diversification of these genes, and possible roles of the metacaspase genes related to stress responses, i.e., sulfur metabolism in connection to oxidative stress, and nutrient stress induced cellular differentiation. Co-expression of genes encoding metacaspases and nodularin toxin synthesis enzymes was also observed in Nodularia spumigena. The study shows that metacaspases represent an adaptation of potentially high importance for several key organisms in the Baltic Sea, most prominently Cyanobacteria, and open up for further exploration of their physiological roles in microbes and assessment of their ecological impact in aquatic habitats.

  9. Drought sensitivity predicts habitat size sensitivity in an aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Amundrud, Sarah L; Srivastava, Diane S

    2015-07-01

    Species and trophic richness often increase with habitat size. Although many ecological processes have been evoked to explain both patterns, the environmental stress associated with small habitats has rarely been considered. We propose that larger habitats may be species rich simply because their environmental conditions are within the fundamental niche of more species; larger habitats may also have more trophic levels if traits of predators render them vulnerable to environmental stress. We test this hypothesis using the aquatic insect larvae in water-filled bromeliads. In bromeliads, the probability of desiccation is greatest in small plants. For the 10 most common bromeliad insect taxa, we ask whether differences in drought tolerance and regional abundances between taxa predict community and trophic composition over a gradient of bromeliad size. First, we used bromeliad survey data to calculate the mean habitat size of occurrence of each taxon. Comparing the observed mean habitat size of occurrence to that expected from random species assembly based on differences in their regional abundances allowed us to obtain habitat size sensitivity indices (as Z scores) for the various insect taxa. Second, we obtained drought sensitivity indices by subjecting individual insects to drought and measuring the effects on relative growth rates in a mesocosm experiment. We found that drought sensitivity strongly, predicts habitat size sensitivity in bromeliad insects. However, an increase in trophic richness with habitat size could not be explained by an increased sensitivity of predators to drought, but rather by sampling effects, as predators were rare compared to lower trophic levels. This finding suggests that physiological tolerance to environmental stress can be relevant in explaining the universal increase in species with habitat size.

  10. Diversity and Expression of Bacterial Metacaspases in an Aquatic Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Asplund-Samuelsson, Johannes; Sundh, John; Dupont, Chris L.; Allen, Andrew E.; McCrow, John P.; Celepli, Narin A.; Bergman, Birgitta; Ininbergs, Karolina; Ekman, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Metacaspases are distant homologs of metazoan caspase proteases, implicated in stress response, and programmed cell death (PCD) in bacteria and phytoplankton. While the few previous studies on metacaspases have relied on cultured organisms and sequenced genomes, no studies have focused on metacaspases in a natural setting. We here present data from the first microbial community-wide metacaspase survey; performed by querying metagenomic and metatranscriptomic datasets from the brackish Baltic Sea, a water body characterized by pronounced environmental gradients and periods of massive cyanobacterial blooms. Metacaspase genes were restricted to ~4% of the bacteria, taxonomically affiliated mainly to Bacteroidetes, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria and Cyanobacteria. The gene abundance was significantly higher in larger or particle-associated bacteria (>0.8 μm), and filamentous Cyanobacteria dominated metacaspase gene expression throughout the bloom season. Distinct seasonal expression patterns were detected for the three metacaspase genes in Nodularia spumigena, one of the main bloom-formers. Clustering of normalized gene expression in combination with analyses of genomic and assembly data suggest functional diversification of these genes, and possible roles of the metacaspase genes related to stress responses, i.e., sulfur metabolism in connection to oxidative stress, and nutrient stress induced cellular differentiation. Co-expression of genes encoding metacaspases and nodularin toxin synthesis enzymes was also observed in Nodularia spumigena. The study shows that metacaspases represent an adaptation of potentially high importance for several key organisms in the Baltic Sea, most prominently Cyanobacteria, and open up for further exploration of their physiological roles in microbes and assessment of their ecological impact in aquatic habitats. PMID:27458440

  11. Staunton 1 reclamation demonstration project. Aquatic ecosystems. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Vinikour, W. S.

    1981-02-01

    To provide long-term indications of the potential water quality improvements following reclamation efforts at the Staunton 1 Reclamation Demonstration Project, macroinvertebrates were collected from three on-site ponds and from the receiving stream (Cahokia Creek) for site drainage. Implications for potential benthic community differences resulting from site runoff were disclosed, but macroinvertebrate diversity throughout Cahokia Creek was limited due to an unstable, sandy substrate. The three ponds sampled were the New Pond, which was created as part of the reclamation activities; the Shed Pond, which and the Old Pond, which, because it was an existing, nonimpacted pond free of site runoff, served as a control. Comparisons of macroinvertebrates from the ponds indicated the potential for the New Pond to develop into a productive ecosystem. Macroinvertebrates in the New Pond were generally species more tolerant of acid mine drainage conditions. However, due to the present limited faunal densities and the undesirable physical and chemical characteristics of the New Pond, the pond should not be stocked with fish at this time.

  12. Human effects on ecological connectivity in aquatic ecosystems: Integrating scientific approaches to support management and mitigation.

    PubMed

    Crook, David A; Lowe, Winsor H; Allendorf, Frederick W; Erős, Tibor; Finn, Debra S; Gillanders, Bronwyn M; Hadwen, Wade L; Harrod, Chris; Hermoso, Virgilio; Jennings, Simon; Kilada, Raouf W; Nagelkerken, Ivan; Hansen, Michael M; Page, Timothy J; Riginos, Cynthia; Fry, Brian; Hughes, Jane M

    2015-11-15

    Understanding the drivers and implications of anthropogenic disturbance of ecological connectivity is a key concern for the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem processes. Here, we review human activities that affect the movements and dispersal of aquatic organisms, including damming of rivers, river regulation, habitat loss and alteration, human-assisted dispersal of organisms and climate change. Using a series of case studies, we show that the insight needed to understand the nature and implications of connectivity, and to underpin conservation and management, is best achieved via data synthesis from multiple analytical approaches. We identify four key knowledge requirements for progressing our understanding of the effects of anthropogenic impacts on ecological connectivity: autecology; population structure; movement characteristics; and environmental tolerance/phenotypic plasticity. Structuring empirical research around these four broad data requirements, and using this information to parameterise appropriate models and develop management approaches, will allow for mitigation of the effects of anthropogenic disturbance on ecological connectivity in aquatic ecosystems.

  13. ANN application for prediction of atmospheric nitrogen deposition to aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Palani, Sundarambal; Tkalich, Pavel; Balasubramanian, Rajasekhar; Palanichamy, Jegathambal

    2011-06-01

    The occurrences of increased atmospheric nitrogen deposition (ADN) in Southeast Asia during smoke haze episodes have undesired consequences on receiving aquatic ecosystems. A successful prediction of episodic ADN will allow a quantitative understanding of its possible impacts. In this study, an artificial neural network (ANN) model is used to estimate atmospheric deposition of total nitrogen (TN) and organic nitrogen (ON) concentrations to coastal aquatic ecosystems. The selected model input variables were nitrogen species from atmospheric deposition, Total Suspended Particulates, Pollutant Standards Index and meteorological parameters. ANN models predictions were also compared with multiple linear regression model having the same inputs and output. ANN model performance was found relatively more accurate in its predictions and adequate even for high-concentration events with acceptable minimum error. The developed ANN model can be used as a forecasting tool to complement the current TN and ON analysis within the atmospheric deposition-monitoring program in the region.

  14. Controlled Environments Enable Adaptive Management in Aquatic Ecosystems Under Altered Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bubenheim, David L.

    2016-01-01

    Ecosystems worldwide are impacted by altered environment conditions resulting from climate, drought, and land use changes. Gaps in the science knowledge base regarding plant community response to these novel and rapid changes limit both science understanding and management of ecosystems. We describe how CE Technologies have enabled the rapid supply of gap-filling science, development of ecosystem simulation models, and remote sensing assessment tools to provide science-informed, adaptive management methods in the impacted aquatic ecosystem of the California Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. The Delta is the hub for California's water, supplying Southern California agriculture and urban communities as well as the San Francisco Bay area. The changes in environmental conditions including temperature, light, and water quality and associated expansion of invasive aquatic plants negatively impact water distribution and ecology of the San Francisco Bay/Delta complex. CE technologies define changes in resource use efficiencies, photosynthetic productivity, evapotranspiration, phenology, reproductive strategies, and spectral reflectance modifications in native and invasive species in response to altered conditions. We will discuss how the CE technologies play an enabling role in filling knowledge gaps regarding plant response to altered environments, parameterization and validation of ecosystem models, development of satellite-based, remote sensing tools, and operational management strategies.

  15. A review of climate-driven mismatches between interdependent phenophases in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Donnelly, Alison; Caffarra, Amelia; O'Neill, Bridget F

    2011-11-01

    Mismatches in phenology between mutually dependent species, resulting from climate change, can have far-reaching consequences throughout an ecosystem at both higher and lower trophic levels. Rising temperatures, due to climate warming, have resulted in advances in development and changes in behaviour of many organisms around the world. However, not all species or phenophases are responding to this increase in temperature at the same rate, thus creating a disruption to previously synchronised interdependent key life-cycle stages. Mismatches have been reported between plants and pollinators, predators and prey, and pests and hosts. Here, we review mismatches between interdependent phenophases at different trophic levels resulting from climate change. We categorized the studies into (1) terrestrial (natural and agricultural) ecosystems, and (2) aquatic (freshwater and marine) ecosystems. As expected, we found reports of 'winners' and 'losers' in each system, such as earlier emergence of prey enabling partial avoidance of predators, potential reductions in crop yield if herbivore pests emerge before their predators and possible declines in marine biodiversity due to disruption in plankton-fish phenologies. Furthermore, in the marine environment rising temperatures have resulted in synchrony in a previously mismatched prey and predator system, resulting in an abrupt population decline in the prey species. The examples reviewed suggest that more research into the complex interactions between species in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems is necessary to make conclusive predictions of how climate warming may impact the fragile balances within ecosystems in future.

  16. Reed beds may facilitate transfer of tributyltin from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems through insect vectors in the Archipelago Sea, SW Finland.

    PubMed

    Lilley, Thomas M; Meierjohann, Axel; Ruokolainen, Lasse; Peltonen, Jani; Vesterinen, Eero; Kronberg, Leif; Nikinmaa, Mikko

    2012-08-01

    Due to their adsorptive behavior, organotin compounds (OTCs), such as tributyltin (TBT), are accumulated in aquatic sediments. They resist biodegradation and, despite a ban in 2008, are a potential source for future exposure. Sediment OTCs have mostly been measured from sites of known high concentrations such as ports, shipping lanes, and marine dredging waste sites. The possible flow of OTCs from marine to terrestrial ecosystems, however, has not been studied. In the present study, the authors assessed whether sediments in common reed beds (Phragmites australis) accumulate TBT and whether chironomid (Diptera: Chironomidae) communities developing in reed-bed sediments act as vectors in the transfer of TBT from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems in the Airisto channel, Archipelago Sea. The authors also investigated whether distance from the only known source and depth and TBT concentration of the adjacent shipping lane affect reed-bed concentrations. Thirty-six sites along the Airisto channel were sampled at 2-km intervals with triplicate samples from reed beds and the adjacent shipping lane for sediment and seven reed-bed sites for chironomids, and these were analyzed with an solid phase extraction liquid chromatography tamdem mass spectrometry method. The closer to the source the sample site was, the higher the measured TBT concentrations were; and the deeper the shipping lane, the lower the concentration of TBT in reed-bed sediments. The chironomid TBT concentrations correlated with reed-bed sediment TBT concentrations and showed evidence of accumulation. Therefore, TBT may be transferred, through the food web, from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems relatively close to a source through ecosystem boundaries, such as common reed beds, which are areas of high insect biomass production in the Archipelago Sea.

  17. Selenium biotransformations in an engineered aquatic ecosystem for bioremediation of agricultural wastewater via brine shrimp production.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Radomir; Tantoyotai, Prapakorn; Fakra, Sirine C; Marcus, Matthew A; Yang, Soo In; Pickering, Ingrid J; Bañuelos, Gary S; Hristova, Krassimira R; Freeman, John L

    2013-05-21

    An engineered aquatic ecosystem was specifically designed to bioremediate selenium (Se), occurring as oxidized inorganic selenate from hypersalinized agricultural drainage water while producing brine shrimp enriched in organic Se and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for use in value added nutraceutical food supplements. Selenate was successfully bioremediated by microalgal metabolism into organic Se (seleno-amino acids) and partially removed via gaseous volatile Se formation. Furthermore, filter-feeding brine shrimp that accumulated this organic Se were removed by net harvest. Thriving in this engineered pond system, brine shrimp ( Artemia franciscana Kellogg) and brine fly (Ephydridae sp.) have major ecological relevance as important food sources for large populations of waterfowl, breeding, and migratory shore birds. This aquatic ecosystem was an ideal model for study because it mimics trophic interactions in a Se polluted wetland. Inorganic selenate in drainage water was metabolized differently in microalgae, bacteria, and diatoms where it was accumulated and reduced into various inorganic forms (selenite, selenide, or elemental Se) or partially incorporated into organic Se mainly as selenomethionine. Brine shrimp and brine fly larva then bioaccumulated Se from ingesting aquatic microorganisms and further metabolized Se predominately into organic Se forms. Importantly, adult brine flies, which hatched from aquatic larva, bioaccumulated the highest Se concentrations of all organisms tested.

  18. K-Pg events facilitated lineage transitions between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Procheş, Şerban; Polgar, Gianluca; Marshall, David J.

    2014-01-01

    We use dated phylogenetic trees for tetrapod vertebrates to identify lineages that shifted between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in terms of feeding or development, and to assess the timing of such events. Both stem and crown lineage ages indicate a peak in transition events in correspondence with the K-Pg mass extinction. This meets the prediction that changes in competitive pressure and resource availability following mass extinction events should facilitate such transitions. PMID:24919699

  19. K-Pg events facilitated lineage transitions between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Procheş, Serban; Polgar, Gianluca; Marshall, David J

    2014-06-01

    We use dated phylogenetic trees for tetrapod vertebrates to identify lineages that shifted between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in terms of feeding or development, and to assess the timing of such events. Both stem and crown lineage ages indicate a peak in transition events in correspondence with the K-Pg mass extinction. This meets the prediction that changes in competitive pressure and resource availability following mass extinction events should facilitate such transitions.

  20. Environmental fate and biodegradability of benzene derivatives as studied in a model aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Lu, P Y; Metcalf, R L

    1975-04-01

    A model aquatic ecosystem is devised for studying relatively volatile organic compounds and simulating direct discharge of chemical wastes into aquatic ecosystems. Six simple benzene derivatives (aniline, anisole, benzoic acid, chlorobenzene, nitrobenzene, and phthalic anhydride) and other important specialty chemicals: hexachlorobenzene, pentachlorophenol, 2,6-diethylaniline, and 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol were also chosen for study of environmental behavior and fate in the model aquatic ecosystem. Quantitative relationships of the intrinsic molecular properties of the environmental micropollutants with biological responses are established, e.g., water solubility, partition coefficient, pi constant, sigma constant, ecological magnification, biodegradability index, and comparative detoxication mechanisms, respectively. Water solubility, pi constant, and sigma constant are the most significant factors and control the biological responses of the food chain members. Water solubility and pi constant control the degree of bioaccumulation, and sigma constant limits the metabolism of the xenobiotics via microsomal detoxication enzymes. These highly significant correlations should be useful for predicting environmental fate of organic chemicals.

  1. Possible nutrient limiting factor in long term operation of closed aquatic ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hao, Zongjie; Li, Yanhui; Cai, Wenkai; Wu, Peipei; Liu, Yongding; Wang, Gaohong

    2012-03-01

    To investigate nutrient limitation effect on the community metabolism of closed aquatic ecosystem and possible nutrient limiting factors in the experimental food chains, depletion of inorganic chemicals including carbon, nitrogen and phosphorous was tested. A closed aquatic ecosystem lab module consisting of Chlorella pyrenoidosa and Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Daphnia magna and associated unidentified microbes was established. Closed ecological systems receive no carbon dioxide; therefore, we presumed carbon as a first limiting factor. The results showed that the algae population in the nutrient saturated group was statistically higher than that in the nutrient limited groups, and that the chlorophyll a content of algae in the phosphorus limited group was the highest among the limited groups. However, the nitrogen limited group supported the most Daphnia, followed by the carbon limited group, the nutrient saturated group and the phosphorus limited group. Redundancy analysis showed that the total phosphorus contents were correlated significantly with the population of algae, and that the amount of soluble carbohydrate as feedback of nutrient depletion was correlated with the number of Daphnia. Thus, these findings suggest that phosphorus is the limiting factor in the operation of closed aquatic ecosystem. The results presented herein have important indications for the future construction of long term closed ecological system.

  2. EcoCasting: Using NetLogo models of aquatic ecosystems to teach scientific inquiry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buzby, C. K.; Jona, K.

    2010-12-01

    The EcoCasting project from the Office of STEM Education Partnerships (OSEP) at Northwestern University has developed a computer model-based curriculum for high school environmental science classes to study complexity in aquatic ecosystems. EcoCasting aims to deliver cutting edge scientific research on bioaccumulation in invaded Great Lakes food webs to high school classes. Scientists and environmental engineers at Northwestern are investigating unusual bioaccumulation patterns in invaded food webs of the Great Lakes. High school students are exploring this authentic data to understand what is causing the anomalies in the data. Students use a series of NetLogo agent-based models of an aquatic ecosystem to study how toxins accumulate in the food web. Using these models, students learn about predator-prey relationships, bioaccumulation, and invasive species. Students are confronted with contradictory data collected by scientists and investigate alternative food web mechanisms at work. By studying the individual variables, students learn common scientific principles. When multiple variables are combined in a unifying model, students learn that the interactions lead to unexpected outcomes. Students learn about the complexity of the ecosystem and gain proficiency interpreting computer models and scientific data collection in this curriculum. Model of aquatic food chain

  3. Aquatic Ecosystems, Water Quality, and Global Change: Challenges of Conducting Multi-Stressor Vulnerability Assessments (Final Report)

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA announced the availability of the final report, Aquatic Ecosystems and Global Change: The Challenges of conducting Multi-Stressor Global Change Vulnerability Assessments. This report investigates the issues and challenges associated with identifying, calculating, and ...

  4. Aquatic Ecosystems, Water Quality, and Global Change: Challenges of conducting Multi-Stressor Vulnerability Assessments (External Review Draft)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This draft report investigates the issues and challenges associated with identifying, calculating, and mapping indicators of the relative vulnerability of water quality and aquatic ecosystems, across the United States, to the potential impacts of global change. Using a large set...

  5. Field flume reveals aquatic vegetation's role in sediment and particulate phosphorus transport in a shallow aquatic ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harvey, J.W.; Noe, G.B.; Larsen, L.G.; Nowacki, D.J.; McPhillips, L.E.

    2011-01-01

    Flow interactions with aquatic vegetation and effects on sediment transport and nutrient redistribution are uncertain in shallow aquatic ecosystems. Here we quantified sediment transport in the Everglades by progressively increasing flow velocity in a field flume constructed around undisturbed bed sediment and emergent macrophytes. Suspended sediment 100 μm became dominant at higher velocity steps after a threshold shear stress for bed floc entrainment was exceeded. Shedding of vortices that had formed downstream of plant stems also occurred on that velocity step which promoted additional sediment detachment from epiphyton. Modeling determined that the potentially entrainable sediment reservoir, 46 g m−2, was similar to the reservoir of epiphyton (66 g m−2) but smaller than the reservoir of flocculent bed sediment (330 g m−2). All suspended sediment was enriched in phosphorus (by approximately twenty times) compared with bulk sediment on the bed surface and on plant stems, indicating that the most easily entrainable sediment is also the most nutrient rich (and likely the most biologically active).

  6. Environmental behavior of the chiral insecticide fipronil: Enantioselective toxicity, distribution and transformation in aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Qu, Han; Ma, Rui-Xue; Liu, Dong-Hui; Gao, Jing; Wang, Fang; Zhou, Zhi-Qiang; Wang, Peng

    2016-11-15

    The enantioselective environmental behaviors of the chiral insecticide fipronil and its metabolites in lab-scale aquatic ecosystems were studied and the toxicity of fipronil enantiomers and the metabolites to non-target organisms Lemna minor (L. minor) and Anodonta woodiana (A. woodiana) was also investigated in this work. Water-sediment, water-L. minor, water-A. woodiana, and water-sediment-L. minor-A. woodiana ecosystems were set up and exposed to fipronil through a 90-day period. The results showed fipronil could be degraded significantly faster (half-life of 4.6 days) in the complex water-sediment-L. minor-A. woodiana ecosystem. A. woodiana played a crucial role in the dissipation of fipronil, and the microorganisms in the sediment also made great contribution to the degradation of fipronil in aquatic ecosystems. All the three metabolites fipronil desulfinyl, fipronil sulfide and fipronil sulfone were detected in the ecosystems and were more persistent than fipronil. Enantioselective degradation of fipronil was observed with S-fipronil being preferentially degraded in sediment and L. minor, while R-fipronil was metabolized preferentially in A. woodiana. EC50 for L. minor was obtained using 7-day exposure, and for A. woodiana was obtained using 72-h exposure. S-fipronil was more toxic to A. woodiana, while R-fipronil showed higher toxicity to L. minor. Moreover, the three metabolites were found more toxic than fipronil indicating significant environment risks due to their persistence. The present study might have important implications for the risk assessment of fipronil and its metabolites in real aquatic environment.

  7. Aquatic ecosystem protection and restoration: Advances in methods for assessment and evaluation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bain, M.B.; Harig, A.L.; Loucks, D.P.; Goforth, R.R.; Mills, K.E.

    2000-01-01

    Many methods and criteria are available to assess aquatic ecosystems, and this review focuses on a set that demonstrates advancements from community analyses to methods spanning large spatial and temporal scales. Basic methods have been extended by incorporating taxa sensitivity to different forms of stress, adding measures linked to system function, synthesizing multiple faunal groups, integrating biological and physical attributes, spanning large spatial scales, and enabling simulations through time. These tools can be customized to meet the needs of a particular assessment and ecosystem. Two case studies are presented to show how new methods were applied at the ecosystem scale for achieving practical management goals. One case used an assessment of biotic structure to demonstrate how enhanced river flows can improve habitat conditions and restore a diverse fish fauna reflective of a healthy riverine ecosystem. In the second case, multitaxonomic integrity indicators were successful in distinguishing lake ecosystems that were disturbed, healthy, and in the process of restoration. Most methods strive to address the concept of biological integrity and assessment effectiveness often can be impeded by the lack of more specific ecosystem management objectives. Scientific and policy explorations are needed to define new ways for designating a healthy system so as to allow specification of precise quality criteria that will promote further development of ecosystem analysis tools.

  8. Exploring the Use of Participatory Information to Improve Monitoring, Mapping and Assessment of Aquatic Ecosystem Services at Landascape Scales

    EPA Science Inventory

    Traditionally, the EPA has monitored aquatic ecosystems using statistically rigorous sample designs and intensive field efforts which provide high quality datasets. But by their nature they leave many aquatic systems unsampled, follow a top down approach, have a long lag between ...

  9. Effects of experimental floods on riparian and aquatic ecosystems: Bill Williams River, Arizona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shafroth, P. B.; Andersen, D. C.; Wilcox, A. C.; Kui, L.; Stella, J. C.

    2013-12-01

    Development of flow prescriptions for environmental purposes along rivers is relatively common, but implementation of these 'environmental flows' occurs infrequently. Implementation is critical for testing hypotheses relating flow regime to biotic response, which ultimately can inform adaptive flow management. We describe the development of flow prescriptions and evaluate responses of riparian vegetation, beaver dams, and associated aquatic habitat to experimental floods and intervening base flows associated with an environmental flow program on the Bill Williams River (BWR), in semiarid Arizona. First, we assessed effects of flow releases between 1993 and 2009 designed to favor the establishment and maintenance of native riparian trees (Populus and Salix) and disfavor an invasive, nonnative shrub (Tamarix spp.) downstream of Alamo Dam on the BWR. Our data are multi-scaled and include a several-decade assessment of changes to major vegetation types based on a time series of aerial photography, an assessment of species composition and abundance sampled in permanent vegetation quadrats, and targeted seedling surveys following experimental floods. Between 1993 and 2009, we observed significant increases in Populus and Salix forests and essentially no change in Tamarix. Experimental floods in 2006 and 2007 resulted in higher mortality of Tamarix seedlings than Salix. These results illustrate the potential for managing streamflow to influence riparian vegetation dynamics, including management of nonnative species. Second, we examined the role of beaver as ecosystem engineers in the BWR and linkages to flow releases between 2004 and 2013. Beaver convert lotic stream habitat to lentic through dam construction and maintenance during low flow periods, and the process is reversed when a flood or other event causes dam failure. We estimated the extent of lotic and beaver-created lentic (beaver pond) habitat along the BWR and related the likelihood of damage or destruction of

  10. Examining Ecological and Ecosystem Level Impacts of Aquatic Invasive Species in Lake Michigan Using An Ecosystem Productivity Model, LM-Eco

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological and ecosystem-level impacts of aquatic invasive species in Lake Michigan were examined using the Lake Michigan Ecosystem Model (LM-Eco). The LM-Eco model includes a detailed description of trophic levels and their interactions within the lower food web of Lake Michiga...

  11. Sensitivity of aquatic ecosystems to climatic and anthropogenic changes: The basin and range, American Southwest and Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grimm, N. B.; Chacon, A.; Dahm, Clifford N.; Hostetler, S.W.; Lind, O.T.; Starkweather, P.L.; Wurtsbaugh, W.W.

    1997-01-01

    Variability and unpredictability are characteristics of the aquatic ecosystems, hydrological patterns and climate of the largely dryland region that encompasses the Basin and Range, American Southwest and western Mexico. Neither hydrological nor climatological models for the region are sufficiently developed to describe the magnitude or direction of change in response to increased carbon dioxide; thus, an attempt to predict specific responses of aquatic ecosystems is premature. Instead, we focus on the sensitivity of rivers, streams, springs, wetlands, reservoirs, and lakes of the region to potential changes in climate, especially those inducing a change in hydrological patterns such as amount, timing and predictability of stream flow. The major sensitivities of aquatic ecosystems are their permanence and even existence in the face of potential reduced net basin supply of water, stability of geomorphological structure and riparian ecotones with alterations in disturbance regimes, and water quality changes resulting from a modified water balance. In all of these respects, aquatic ecosystems of the region are also sensitive to the extensive modifications imposed by human use of water resources, which underscores the difficulty of separating this type of anthropogenic change from climate change. We advocate a focus in future research on reconstruction and analysis of past climates and associated ecosystem characteristics, long-term studies to discriminate directional change vs. year to year variability (including evidence of aquatic ecosystem responses or sensitivity to extremes), and studies of ecosystems affected by human activity. ?? 1997 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. Water quality assessment of aquatic ecosystems using ecological criteria - case study in Bulgaria.

    PubMed

    Damyanova, Sonya; Ivanova, Iliana; Ignatova, Nadka

    2014-11-02

    Four aquatic ecosystems (two rivers and two dams) situated in the western part of Bulgaria were investigated over a three years' period. The River Egulya and Petrohan dam are situated in mountainous regions at about 1000 m altitude, and are not influenced by any anthropogenic sources. Petrohan dam is a site for long-term ecosystem research as a part of Bulgarian long-term ecological research network. The other two systems belong to populated industrial areas. The River Martinovska flows through a region with former long-term mining activity, while Ogosta dam is near a battery production factory. Both the geochemical and geographical ecosystems' conditions are different, and their social usage as well. Ogosta dam water is used for irrigation and Petrohan dam for electric supply. The ecosystem sensitivity to heavy metals was evaluated by a critical load approach. Two criteria were used for risk assessment: critical load exceedance and microbial toxicity test. All studied ecosystems were more sensitive to cadmium than to lead deposition. The potential risk of Cd damage is higher for Petrohan dam and the River Egulya, where critical load exceedance was calculated for two years. Pseudomonas putida growth inhibition test detected a lack of toxicity for all studied ecosystems at the time of investigation with the exception of the low water September sample of the River Martinovska. The fast bacterial test is very suitable for a regular measurement of water toxicity because of its simplicity, lack of sophisticated equipment and clear results.

  13. Heavy metal pollution in aquatic ecosystems and its phytoremediation using wetland plants: an ecosustainable approach.

    PubMed

    Rai, Prabhat Kumar

    2008-01-01

    This review addresses the global problem of heavymetal pollution originating from increased industrialization and urbanization and its amelioration by using wetland plants both in a microcosm as well as natural/field condition. Heavymetal contamination in aquatic ecosystems due to discharge of industrial effluents may pose a serious threat to human health. Alkaline precipitation, ion exchange columns, electrochemical removal, filtration, and membrane technologies are the currently available technologies for heavy metal removal. These conventional technologies are not economical and may produce adverse impacts on aquatic ecosystems. Phytoremediation of metals is a cost-effective "green" technology based on the use of specially selected metal-accumulating plants to remove toxic metals from soils and water. Wetland plants are important tools for heavy metal removal. The Ramsar convention, one of the earlier modern global conservation treaties, was adopted at Ramsar, Iran, in 1971 and became effective in 1975. This convention emphasized the wise use of wetlands and their resources. This review mentions salient features of wetland ecosystems, their vegetation component, and the pros and cons involved in heavy metal removal. Wetland plants are preferred over other bio-agents due to their low cost, frequent abundance in aquatic ecosystems, and easy handling. The extensive rhizosphere of wetland plants provides an enriched culture zone for the microbes involved in degradation. The wetland sediment zone provides reducing conditions that are conducive to the metal removal pathway. Constructed wetlands proved to be effective for the abatement of heavymetal pollution from acid mine drainage; landfill leachate; thermal power; and municipal, agricultural, refinery, and chlor-alkali effluent. the physicochemical properties of wetlands provide many positive attributes for remediating heavy metals. Typha, Phragmites, Eichhornia, Azolla, Lemna, and other aquatic macrophytes are some

  14. Heavy metal pollution in aquatic ecosystems and its phytoremediation using wetland plants: An ecosustainable approach

    SciTech Connect

    Rai, P.K.

    2008-07-01

    This review addresses the global problem of heavy metal pollution originating from increased industrialization and urbanization and its amelioration by using wetland plants both in a microcosm as well as natural/field condition. This review mentions salient features of wetland ecosystems, their vegetation component, and the pros and cons involved in heavy metal removal. Wetland plants are preferred over other bio-agents due to their low cost, frequent abundance in aquatic ecosystems, and easy handling. Constructed wetlands proved to be effective for the abatement of heavy metal pollution from acid mine drainage; landfill leachate; thermal power; and municipal, agricultural, refinery, and chlor-alkali effluent. the physicochemical properties of wetlands provide many positive attributes for remediating heavy metals. Typha, Phragmites, Eichhornia, Azolla, Lemna, and other aquatic macrophytes are some of the potent wetland plants for heavy metal removal. Biomass disposal problem and seasonal growth of aquatic macrophytes are some limitations in the transfer of phytoremediation technology from the laboratory to the field. However, the disposed biomass of macrophytes may be used for various fruitful applications. An ecosustainable model has been developed through the author's various works, which may ameliorate some of the limitations. The creation of more areas for phytoremediation may also aid in wetlands conservation. Genetic engineering and biodiversity prospecting of endangered wetland plants are important future prospects in this regard.

  15. Cascading effects of induced terrestrial plant defences on aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    Jackrel, Sara L; Wootton, J Timothy

    2015-04-22

    Herbivores induce plants to undergo diverse processes that minimize costs to the plant, such as producing defences to deter herbivory or reallocating limited resources to inaccessible portions of the plant. Yet most plant tissue is consumed by decomposers, not herbivores, and these defensive processes aimed to deter herbivores may alter plant tissue even after detachment from the plant. All consumers value nutrients, but plants also require these nutrients for primary functions and defensive processes. We experimentally simulated herbivory with and without nutrient additions on red alder (Alnus rubra), which supplies the majority of leaf litter for many rivers in western North America. Simulated herbivory induced a defence response with cascading effects: terrestrial herbivores and aquatic decomposers fed less on leaves from stressed trees. This effect was context dependent: leaves from fertilized-only trees decomposed most rapidly while leaves from fertilized trees receiving the herbivory treatment decomposed least, suggesting plants funnelled a nutritionally valuable resource into enhanced defence. One component of the defence response was a decrease in leaf nitrogen leading to elevated carbon : nitrogen. Aquatic decomposers prefer leaves naturally low in C : N and this altered nutrient profile largely explains the lower rate of aquatic decomposition. Furthermore, terrestrial soil decomposers were unaffected by either treatment but did show a preference for local and nitrogen-rich leaves. Our study illustrates the ecological implications of terrestrial herbivory and these findings demonstrate that the effects of selection caused by terrestrial herbivory in one ecosystem can indirectly shape the structure of other ecosystems through ecological fluxes across boundaries.

  16. A field facility to simulate climate warming and increased nutrient supply in shallow aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Hines, Jes; Hammrich, Arne; Steiner, Daniel; Gessner, Mark O

    2013-12-01

    Global warming and excess nitrogen deposition can exert strong impacts on aquatic populations, communities, and ecosystems. However, experimental data to establish clear cause-and-effect relationships in naturally complex field conditions are scarce in aquatic environments. Here, we describe the design and performance of a unique outdoor enclosure facility used to simulate warming, increased nitrogen supply, and both factors combined in a littoral freshwater wetland dominated by common reed, Phragmites australis. The experimental system effectively simulated a 2.8 °C climate warming scenario over an extended period, capturing the natural temperature variations in the wetland at diel and seasonal scales with only small deviations. Excess nitrogen supply enhanced nitrate concentrations especially in winter when it was associated with increased concentration of ammonium and dissolved organic carbon. Nitrogen also reduced dissolved oxygen concentrations, particularly in the summer. Importantly, by stimulating biological activity, warming enhanced the nitrogen uptake capacity of the wetland during the winter, emphasizing the need for multifactorial global change experiments that examine both warming and nitrogen loading in concert. Establishing similar experiments across broad environmental gradients holds great potential to provide robust assessments of the impacts of climate change on shallow aquatic ecosystems.

  17. Irrigation agriculture affects organic matter decomposition in semi-arid terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Arroita, Maite; Causapé, Jesús; Comín, Francisco A; Díez, Joserra; Jimenez, Juan José; Lacarta, Juan; Lorente, Carmen; Merchán, Daniel; Muñiz, Selene; Navarro, Enrique; Val, Jonatan; Elosegi, Arturo

    2013-12-15

    Many dryland areas are being converted into intensively managed irrigation crops, what can disrupt the hydrological regime, degrade soil and water quality, enhance siltation, erosion and bank instability, and affect biological communities. Still, the impacts of irrigation schemes on the functioning of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems are poorly understood. Here we assess the effects of irrigation agriculture on breakdown of coarse organic matter in soil and water. We measured breakdown rates of alder and holm oak leaves, and of poplar sticks in terrestrial and aquatic sites following a gradient of increasing irrigation agriculture in a semi-arid Mediterranean basin transformed into irrigation agriculture in 50% of its surface. Spatial patterns of stick breakdown paralleled those of leaf breakdown. In soil, stick breakdown rates were extremely low in non-irrigated sites (0.0001-0.0003 day(-1)), and increased with the intensity of agriculture (0.0018-0.0044 day(-1)). In water, stick breakdown rates ranged from 0.0005 to 0.001 day(-1), and increased with the area of the basin subject to irrigation agriculture. Results showed that irrigation agriculture affects functioning of both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, accelerating decomposition of organic matter, especially in soil. These changes can have important consequences for global carbon budgets.

  18. The Role of Biomarkers in the Assessment of Aquatic Ecosystem Health

    PubMed Central

    Hook, Sharon E; Gallagher, Evan P; Batley, Graeme E

    2016-01-01

    Ensuring the health of aquatic ecosystems and identifying species at risk from the detrimental effects of environmental contaminants can be facilitated by integrating analytical chemical analysis with carefully selected biological endpoints measured in tissues of species of concern. These biological endpoints include molecular, biochemical and physiological markers (i.e. biomarkers) that when integrated, can clarify issues of contaminant bioavailability, bioaccumulation and ecological effects while enabling a better understanding of the effects of non-chemical stressors. In the case of contaminant stressors, an understanding of chemical modes of toxicity can be incorporated with diagnostic markers of aquatic animal physiology to help understand the health status of aquatic organisms in the field. Furthermore, new approaches in functional genomics and bioinformatics can help discriminate individual chemicals, or groups of chemicals among complex mixtures that may contribute to adverse biological effects. While the use of biomarkers is not a new paradigm, such approaches have been underutilized in the context of ecological risk assessment and natural resource damage assessment. From a regulatory standpoint, these approaches can help better assess the complex effects from coastal development activities to assessing ecosystem integrity pre- and post-development or site remediation. PMID:24574147

  19. Aquatic ecosystems in Central Colorado are influenced by mineral forming processes and historical mining

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmidt, T.S.; Church, S.E.; Clements, W.H.; Mitchell, K.A.; Fey, D. L.; Wanty, R.B.; Verplanck, P.L.; San, Juan C.A.; Klein, T.L.; deWitt, E.H.; Rockwell, B.W.

    2009-01-01

    Stream water and sediment toxicity to aquatic insects were quantified from central Colorado catchments to distinguish the effect of geologic processes which result in high background metals concentrations from historical mining. Our sampling design targeted small catchments underlain by rocks of a single lithology, which allowed the development of biological and geochemical baselines without the complication of multiple rock types exposed in the catchment. By accounting for geologic sources of metals to the environment, we were able to distinguish between the environmental effects caused by mining and the weathering of different mineralized areas. Elevated metal concentrations in water and sediment were not restricted to mined catchments. Impairment of aquatic communities also occurred in unmined catchments influenced by hydrothermal alteration. Hydrothermal alteration style, deposit type, and mining were important determinants of water and sediment quality and aquatic community structure. Weathering of unmined porphyry Cu-Mo occurrences resulted in water (median toxic unit (TU) = 108) and sediment quality (TU = 1.9) that exceeded concentrations thought to be safe for aquatic ecosystems (TU = 1). Metalsensitive aquatic insects were virtually absent from streams draining catchments with porphyry Cu-Mo occurrences (1.1 individuals/0.1 m2 ). However, water and sediment quality (TU = 0.1, 0.5 water and sediment, respectively) and presence of metalsensitive aquatic insects (204 individuals/0.1 m2 ) for unmined polymetallic vein occurrences were indistinguishable from that for unmined and unaltered streams (TU = 0.1, 0.5 water and sediment, respectively; 201 individuals/0.1 m2 ). In catchments with mined quartz-sericite-pyrite altered polymetallic vein deposits, water (TU = 8.4) and sediment quality (TU = 3.1) were degraded and more toxic to aquatic insects (36 individuals/0.1 m2 ) than water (TU = 0.4) and sediment quality (TU = 1.7) from mined propylitically altered

  20. The First Law of Thermodynamics for Ecosystems. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Thermodynamics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, R. D.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module and a comparison module are concerned with elementary concepts of thermodynamics as…

  1. Watershed land use and aquatic ecosystem response: Ecohydrologic approach to conservation policy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Randhir, Timothy O.; Hawes, Ashley G.

    2009-01-01

    SummaryLand use activities change the natural functions of a watershed impacting the flow of water and water quality, and impair aquatic ecosystems. Optimal allocation of land use depends on attributes related to terrestrial and aquatic environments. A dynamic model that links land use, overland flow, suspended sediment, and an aquatic species is used to evaluate alternate land use policies. The dwarf wedge mussel that is classified as endangered in the region is used as an indicator species of aquatic health in a watershed in Massachusetts. The simulation model is used to evaluate spatial nature of processes and land use policies. Spatial and temporal changes in runoff, sediment loading, and mussel population are modeled over a period of 4 years. Ten policy scenarios represent combinations of best management practices and development of agriculture and urban land at spatial locations of headwaters, main stem regions, riparian, and entire watershed. Increasing the proportion of agriculture and high density residential land use increased runoff, while increasing the frequency and magnitude of peak flows in the watershed. Sediment loading increased with an increased proportion of agriculture area and decreased with an expansion of high density residential area. Scenarios with an increase in sediment loading above the baseline mean exhibited an irregular recovery of the mussel population from high loading events. Policy implications include the need for best management practices to decrease runoff and sediment loading in the watershed, through education and incentive programs.

  2. Ecological and toxicological effects of inorganic nitrogen pollution in aquatic ecosystems: A global assessment.

    PubMed

    Camargo, Julio A; Alonso, Alvaro

    2006-08-01

    We provide a global assessment, with detailed multi-scale data, of the ecological and toxicological effects generated by inorganic nitrogen pollution in aquatic ecosystems. Our synthesis of the published scientific literature shows three major environmental problems: (1) it can increase the concentration of hydrogen ions in freshwater ecosystems without much acid-neutralizing capacity, resulting in acidification of those systems; (2) it can stimulate or enhance the development, maintenance and proliferation of primary producers, resulting in eutrophication of aquatic ecosystems; (3) it can reach toxic levels that impair the ability of aquatic animals to survive, grow and reproduce. Inorganic nitrogen pollution of ground and surface waters can also induce adverse effects on human health and economy. Because reductions in SO2 emissions have reduced the atmospheric deposition of H2SO4 across large portions of North America and Europe, while emissions of NOx have gone unchecked, HNO3 is now playing an increasing role in the acidification of freshwater ecosystems. This acidification process has caused several adverse effects on primary and secondary producers, with significant biotic impoverishments, particularly concerning invertebrates and fishes, in many atmospherically acidified lakes and streams. The cultural eutrophication of freshwater, estuarine, and coastal marine ecosystems can cause ecological and toxicological effects that are either directly or indirectly related to the proliferation of primary producers. Extensive kills of both invertebrates and fishes are probably the most dramatic manifestation of hypoxia (or anoxia) in eutrophic and hypereutrophic aquatic ecosystems with low water turnover rates. The decline in dissolved oxygen concentrations can also promote the formation of reduced compounds, such as hydrogen sulphide, resulting in higher adverse (toxic) effects on aquatic animals. Additionally, the occurrence of toxic algae can significantly

  3. The relationship between species richness and evenness: a meta-analysis of studies across aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Soininen, Janne; Passy, Sophia; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2012-07-01

    Biological diversity comprises both species richness, i.e., the number of species in a community, and evenness, measuring how similar species are in their abundances. The relationship between species richness and evenness (RRE) across communities remains, however, a controversial issue in ecology because no consistent pattern has been reported. We conducted a systematic meta-review of RRE in aquatic ecosystems along regional to continental gradients and across trophic groups, differing in body size by 13 orders of magnitude. Hypotheses that RRE responded to latitudinal and scale variability across trophic groups were tested by regression analyses. Significant correlations of species richness and evenness only existed in 71 out of 229 datasets. Among the RRE, 89 were negative and 140 were positive. RRE did not vary with latitude but showed a positive response to scale. In a meta-analysis with ecosystem type as a single explaining variable, RRE did not vary among ecosystem types, i.e. between marine and freshwater. Finally, autotrophs had more positive RRE than heterotrophs. The weak RRE in many aquatic datasets suggests that richness and evenness often reflect independent components of biodiversity, highlighting that richness alone may be an incomplete surrogate for biodiversity. Our results further elucidate that RRE is driven by organismal and environmental properties, both of which must be considered to gain a deeper understanding of large-scale patterns of biodiversity.

  4. Impacts of aquatic nonindigenous invasive species on the Lake Erie ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Austen, Madeline J.W.; Ciborowski, Jan J.H.; Corkum, Lynda D.; Johnson, Tim B.; MacIsaac, Hugh J.; Metcalfe-Smith, Janice L.; Schloesser, Donald W.; George, Sandra E.

    2002-01-01

    Lake Erie is particularly vulnerable to the introduction and establishment of aquatic nonindigenous invasive species (NIS) populations. A minimum of 144 aquatic NIS have been recorded in the Lake Erie basin including several species [e.g., Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum); zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha); quagga mussel (Dreissena bugensis); an amphipod (Echinogammarus ischnus); round goby (Neogobius melanostomus); and sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus)] that have had discernible impacts on the lake's ecology. NIS pose threats to the Lake Erie ecosystem for a variety of reasons including their ability to proliferate quickly, compete with native species, and transfer contaminants (e.g., PCBs) and disease through the food web. Six of the 14 beneficial use impairments listed in Annex 2 of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement are impaired in Lake Erie, in part as a result of the introduction of NIS. The Lake Erie Lakewide Management Plan (LaMP) has adopted an ecosystem approach to restore beneficial use impairments in the lake. Furthermore, a research consortium, known as the Lake Erie Millennium Network, is working alongside the LaMP, to address research problems regarding NIS, the loss of habitat, and the role of contaminants in the Lake Erie ecosystem.

  5. Transfer of a cyanobacterial neurotoxin within a temperate aquatic ecosystem suggests pathways for human exposure.

    PubMed

    Jonasson, Sara; Eriksson, Johan; Berntzon, Lotta; Spácil, Zdenek; Ilag, Leopold L; Ronnevi, Lars-Olof; Rasmussen, Ulla; Bergman, Birgitta

    2010-05-18

    beta-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA), a neurotoxic nonprotein amino acid produced by most cyanobacteria, has been proposed to be the causative agent of devastating neurodegenerative diseases on the island of Guam in the Pacific Ocean. Because cyanobacteria are widespread globally, we hypothesized that BMAA might occur and bioaccumulate in other ecosystems. Here we demonstrate, based on a recently developed extraction and HPLC-MS/MS method and long-term monitoring of BMAA in cyanobacterial populations of a temperate aquatic ecosystem (Baltic Sea, 2007-2008), that BMAA is biosynthesized by cyanobacterial genera dominating the massive surface blooms of this water body. BMAA also was found at higher concentrations in organisms of higher trophic levels that directly or indirectly feed on cyanobacteria, such as zooplankton and various vertebrates (fish) and invertebrates (mussels, oysters). Pelagic and benthic fish species used for human consumption were included. The highest BMAA levels were detected in the muscle and brain of bottom-dwelling fishes. The discovery of regular biosynthesis of the neurotoxin BMAA in a large temperate aquatic ecosystem combined with its possible transfer and bioaccumulation within major food webs, some ending in human consumption, is alarming and requires attention.

  6. Transfer of a cyanobacterial neurotoxin within a temperate aquatic ecosystem suggests pathways for human exposure

    PubMed Central

    Jonasson, Sara; Eriksson, Johan; Berntzon, Lotta; Spáčil, Zdenĕk; Ilag, Leopold L.; Ronnevi, Lars-Olof; Rasmussen, Ulla; Bergman, Birgitta

    2010-01-01

    β-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA), a neurotoxic nonprotein amino acid produced by most cyanobacteria, has been proposed to be the causative agent of devastating neurodegenerative diseases on the island of Guam in the Pacific Ocean. Because cyanobacteria are widespread globally, we hypothesized that BMAA might occur and bioaccumulate in other ecosystems. Here we demonstrate, based on a recently developed extraction and HPLC-MS/MS method and long-term monitoring of BMAA in cyanobacterial populations of a temperate aquatic ecosystem (Baltic Sea, 2007–2008), that BMAA is biosynthesized by cyanobacterial genera dominating the massive surface blooms of this water body. BMAA also was found at higher concentrations in organisms of higher trophic levels that directly or indirectly feed on cyanobacteria, such as zooplankton and various vertebrates (fish) and invertebrates (mussels, oysters). Pelagic and benthic fish species used for human consumption were included. The highest BMAA levels were detected in the muscle and brain of bottom-dwelling fishes. The discovery of regular biosynthesis of the neurotoxin BMAA in a large temperate aquatic ecosystem combined with its possible transfer and bioaccumulation within major food webs, some ending in human consumption, is alarming and requires attention. PMID:20439734

  7. An explicit GIS-based river basin framework for aquatic ecosystem conservation in the Amazon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venticinque, Eduardo; Forsberg, Bruce; Barthem, Ronaldo; Petry, Paulo; Hess, Laura; Mercado, Armando; Cañas, Carlos; Montoya, Mariana; Durigan, Carlos; Goulding, Michael

    2016-11-01

    Despite large-scale infrastructure development, deforestation, mining and petroleum exploration in the Amazon Basin, relatively little attention has been paid to the management scale required for the protection of wetlands, fisheries and other aspects of aquatic ecosystems. This is due, in part, to the enormous size, multinational composition and interconnected nature of the Amazon River system, as well as to the absence of an adequate spatial model for integrating data across the entire Amazon Basin. In this data article we present a spatially uniform multi-scale GIS framework that was developed especially for the analysis, management and monitoring of various aspects of aquatic systems in the Amazon Basin. The Amazon GIS-Based River Basin Framework is accessible as an ESRI geodatabase at doi:10.5063/F1BG2KX8.

  8. Quantifying Biogeochemical Cycles of CO2 and CH4 over the Land and Aquatic Ecosystems in Northern Eurasia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhuang, Q.

    2015-12-01

    Under the auspices of the NASA Land-Use and Land-Cover Change Program, we have made a significant progress on quantifying both CO2 and CH4 biogeochemical cycles of the land and aquatic systems in Northern Eurasia over the last several decades. Our quantification is based on in situ and satellite data of ecosystem distribution, land cover distribution, carbon, water and energy fluxes, fire disturbances, plant biomass inventory, atmospheric CO2 and CH4, and meteorology. The evaluated process-based modeling systems for both land and aquatic ecosystems for the historical period have been used to project carbon fluxes during the 21st century over this region. The uncertainty associated with these carbon-based gases is also quantified. This presentation will update these quantifications by examining: 1) the impacts of fire disturbances on land ecosystem CO2 budget in the last few decades; 2) net CO2 and CH4 exchanges of the land and aquatic ecosystems in both historical and future periods. Our study has also assessed the role of permafrost dynamics in both land and aquatic ecosystem carbon and water dynamics in this region. Our research provides an integrated land and aquatic ecosystem model that can be used to address biogeochemical cycles of carbon and water in this climate-sensitive region.

  9. Water quality assessment of aquatic ecosystems using ecological criteria – case study in Bulgaria

    PubMed Central

    Damyanova, Sonya; Ivanova, Iliana; Ignatova, Nadka

    2014-01-01

    Four aquatic ecosystems (two rivers and two dams) situated in the western part of Bulgaria were investigated over a three years’ period. The River Egulya and Petrohan dam are situated in mountainous regions at about 1000 m altitude, and are not influenced by any anthropogenic sources. Petrohan dam is a site for long-term ecosystem research as a part of Bulgarian long-term ecological research network. The other two systems belong to populated industrial areas. The River Martinovska flows through a region with former long-term mining activity, while Ogosta dam is near a battery production factory. Both the geochemical and geographical ecosystems’ conditions are different, and their social usage as well. Ogosta dam water is used for irrigation and Petrohan dam for electric supply. The ecosystem sensitivity to heavy metals was evaluated by a critical load approach. Two criteria were used for risk assessment: critical load exceedance and microbial toxicity test. All studied ecosystems were more sensitive to cadmium than to lead deposition. The potential risk of Cd damage is higher for Petrohan dam and the River Egulya, where critical load exceedance was calculated for two years. Pseudomonas putida growth inhibition test detected a lack of toxicity for all studied ecosystems at the time of investigation with the exception of the low water September sample of the River Martinovska. The fast bacterial test is very suitable for a regular measurement of water toxicity because of its simplicity, lack of sophisticated equipment and clear results. PMID:26019591

  10. Adaptive management of large aquatic ecosystem recovery programs in the United States.

    PubMed

    Thom, Ronald; St Clair, Tom; Burns, Rebecca; Anderson, Michael

    2016-12-01

    Adaptive management (AM) is being employed in a number of programs in the United States to guide actions to restore aquatic ecosystems because these programs are both expensive and are faced with significant uncertainties. Many of these uncertainties are associated with prioritizing when, where, and what kind of actions are needed to meet the objectives of enhancing ecosystem services and recovering threatened and endangered species. We interviewed nine large-scale aquatic ecosystem restoration programs across the United States to document the lessons learned from implementing AM. In addition, we recorded information on ecological drivers (e.g., endangered fish species) for the program, and inferred how these drivers reflected more generic ecosystem services. Ecosystem services (e.g., genetic diversity, cultural heritage), albeit not explicit drivers, were either important to the recovery or enhancement of the drivers, or were additional benefits associated with actions to recover or enhance the program drivers. Implementing programs using AM lessons learned has apparently helped achieve better results regarding enhancing ecosystem services and restoring target species populations. The interviews yielded several recommendations. The science and AM program must be integrated into how the overall restoration program operates in order to gain understanding and support, and effectively inform management decision-making. Governance and decision-making varied based on its particular circumstances. Open communication within and among agency and stakeholder groups and extensive vetting lead up to decisions. It was important to have an internal agency staff member to implement the AM plan, and a clear designation of roles and responsibilities, and long-term commitment of other involved parties. The most important management questions and information needs must be identified up front. It was imperative to clearly identify, link and continually reinforce the essential

  11. Conceptual Framework for Aquatic Interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewandowski, J.; Krause, S.

    2015-12-01

    Aquatic interfaces are generally characterized by steep gradients of physical, chemical and biological properties due to the contrast between the two adjacent environments. Innovative measurement techniques are required to study the spatially heterogeneous and temporally variable processes. Especially the different spatial and temporal scales are a large challenge. Due to the steep biogeochemical gradients and the intensive structural and compositional heterogeneity, enhanced biogeochemical processing rates are inherent to aquatic interfaces. Nevertheless, the effective turnover depends strongly on the residence time distribution along the flow paths and in sections with particular biogeochemical milieus and reaction kinetics. Thus, identification and characterization of the highly complex flow patterns in and across aquatic interfaces are crucial to understand biogeochemical processing along exchange flow paths and to quantify transport across aquatic interfaces. Hydrodynamic and biogeochemical processes are closely coupled at aquatic interfaces. However, interface processing rates are not only enhanced compared to the adjacent compartments that they connect; also completely different reactions might occur if certain thresholds are exceeded or the biogeochemical milieu differs significantly from the adjacent environments. Single events, temporal variability and spatial heterogeneity might increase overall processing rates of aquatic interfaces and thus, should not be neglected when studying aquatic interfaces. Aquatic interfaces are key zones relevant for the ecological state of the entire ecosystem and thus, understanding interface functioning and controls is paramount for ecosystem management. The overall aim of this contribution is a general conceptual framework for aquatic interfaces that is applicable to a wide range of systems, scales and processes.

  12. Aquatic risk assessment of pesticides in surface waters in and adjacent to the Everglades and Biscayne National Parks: I. Hazard assessment and problem formulation.

    PubMed

    Carriger, John F; Rand, Gary M

    2008-10-01

    An aquatic risk assessment under the U.S. Environment Protection Agency (EPA) ecological risk framework was conducted for atrazine, metolachlor, malathion, chlorpyrifos, and endosulfan in the C-111 freshwater basin (eastern boundary of the Everglades National Park), northeast Florida Bay, and south Biscayne Bay in South Florida. Based on the use of the hazard quotient approach, measured concentrations of chlorpyrifos and endosulfan in surface waters suggest potential hazards to aquatic organisms and were, therefore, considered as chemicals of potential ecological concern (COPECs). The problem formulation included an overview of the physical/chemical and environmental fate characteristics and aquatic toxicology of the COPECs. Background surface water exposure concentrations of endosulfan and toxicity data from laboratory and field studies indicate that fish and invertebrate mortality may be a concern when endosulfan is applied in agricultural areas near aquatic ecosystems.

  13. Imperiled mammalian fauna of aquatic ecosystems in the Southeast: A historical perspective: Chapter 9

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harvey, M.J.; Clark, J.D.; Benz, G.W.; Collins, D.E.

    1997-01-01

    The passage of the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973 resulted in an increased need for information concerning distribution and status of all native species. However, relatively little is known concerning the historical distribution and current status of many mammalian taxa, and this is particularly so for small non-game species. In this chapter we provide species accounts of mammals commonly associated with aquatic ecosystems that we consider to be imperiled in the southeastern United States. In these accounts we have included information which we feel is valuable toward best understanding the threats that challenge each considered taxon.

  14. Global meta-analysis of native and nonindigenous trophic traits in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    McKnight, Ella; García-Berthou, Emili; Srean, Pao; Rius, Marc

    2016-10-26

    Ecologists have recently devoted their attention to the study of species traits and their role in the establishment and spread of nonindigenous species (NIS). However, research efforts have mostly focused on studies of terrestrial taxa, with lesser attention being dedicated to aquatic species. Aquatic habitats comprise of interconnected waterways, as well as exclusive introduction vectors that allow unparalleled artificial transport of species and their propagules. Consequently, species traits that commonly facilitate biological invasions in terrestrial systems may not be as represented in aquatic environments. We provide a global meta-analysis of studies conducted in both marine and freshwater habitats. We selected studies that conducted experiments with native and NIS under common environmental conditions to allow detailed comparisons among species traits. In addition, we explored whether different factors such as species relatedness, functional feeding groups, latitude, climate, and experimental conditions could be linked to predictive traits. Our results show that species with traits that enhance consumption and growth have a substantially increased probability of establishing and spreading when entering novel ecosystems. Moreover, traits associated with predatory avoidance were more prevalent in NIS and therefore favour invasive species in aquatic habitats. When we analysed NIS interacting with taxonomically distinctive native taxa, we found that consumption and growth were particularly important traits. This suggests that particular attention should be paid to newly introduced species for which there are no close relatives in the local biota. Finally, we found a bias towards studies conducted in temperate regions, and thus, more studies in other climatic regions are needed. We conclude that studies aiming at predicting future range shifts should consider trophic traits of aquatic NIS as these traits are indicative of multiple interacting mechanisms involved

  15. Environmental influence on the response of aquatic laboratory ecosystems to a toxicant

    SciTech Connect

    Woltering, D.M.

    1981-10-01

    The influence of prevailing environmental conditions on population and community responses to chronic toxicant perturbation was addressed in a 36-month laboratory ecosystem study. A series of 16 aquatic communities incorporating guppy, amphipod, snail, planaria, algal, and microbial populations were established in 750-L (200-gal) fiberglass tanks and were monitored monthly for changes in population biomasses. The environmental variables were the exploitation levels of the fish populations and the energy input and habitat availability. The development and resultant near steady states of the predator, prey, and competitor populations were represented graphically using phase plane analysis. Both the density-dependent and the time-dependent responses of the laboratory ecosystems to ''established'' sublethal dieldrin exposure varied according to the prevailing levels of environmental conditions. The ecologically different outcomes ranged from substantial perturbation, including mortalities but with eventual recovery to the preexposure population densities and community structure, to the extinction of a major population as a result of sublethal effects.

  16. RESEARCH SHOWS IMPORTANCE OF RIPARIAN BUFFERS FOR AQUATIC HEALTH

    EPA Science Inventory

    Issue: Excess nitrogen from fertilizer, septic tanks, animal feedlots, and runoff from pavement can threaten aquatic ecosystem health. Riparian buffers -- the vegetated region adjacent to streams and wetlands -- are thought to be effective at intercepting and controlling excess ...

  17. Adaptive genetic variation mediates bottom-up and top-down control in an aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Rudman, Seth M; Rodriguez-Cabal, Mariano A; Stier, Adrian; Sato, Takuya; Heavyside, Julian; El-Sabaawi, Rana W; Crutsinger, Gregory M

    2015-08-07

    Research in eco-evolutionary dynamics and community genetics has demonstrated that variation within a species can have strong impacts on associated communities and ecosystem processes. Yet, these studies have centred around individual focal species and at single trophic levels, ignoring the role of phenotypic variation in multiple taxa within an ecosystem. Given the ubiquitous nature of local adaptation, and thus intraspecific variation, we sought to understand how combinations of intraspecific variation in multiple species within an ecosystem impacts its ecology. Using two species that co-occur and demonstrate adaptation to their natal environments, black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa) and three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus), we investigated the effects of intraspecific phenotypic variation on both top-down and bottom-up forces using a large-scale aquatic mesocosm experiment. Black cottonwood genotypes exhibit genetic variation in their productivity and consequently their leaf litter subsidies to the aquatic system, which mediates the strength of top-down effects from stickleback on prey abundances. Abundances of four common invertebrate prey species and available phosphorous, the most critically limiting nutrient in freshwater systems, are dictated by the interaction between genetic variation in cottonwood productivity and stickleback morphology. These interactive effects fit with ecological theory on the relationship between productivity and top-down control and are comparable in strength to the effects of predator addition. Our results illustrate that intraspecific variation, which can evolve rapidly, is an under-appreciated driver of community structure and ecosystem function, demonstrating that a multi-trophic perspective is essential to understanding the role of evolution in structuring ecological patterns.

  18. Biogeochemical data from terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in a periglacial catchment, West Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindborg, Tobias; Rydberg, Johan; Tröjbom, Mats; Berglund, Sten; Johansson, Emma; Löfgren, Anders; Saetre, Peter; Nordén, Sara; Sohlenius, Gustav; Andersson, Eva; Petrone, Johannes; Borgiel, Micke; Kautsky, Ulrik; Laudon, Hjalmar

    2016-09-01

    Global warming is expected to be most pronounced in the Arctic where permafrost thaw and release of old carbon may provide an important feedback mechanism to the climate system. To better understand and predict climate effects and feedbacks on the cycling of elements within and between ecosystems in northern latitude landscapes, a thorough understanding of the processes related to transport and cycling of elements is required. A fundamental requirement to reach a better process understanding is to have access to high-quality empirical data on chemical concentrations and biotic properties for a wide range of ecosystem domains and functional units (abiotic and biotic pools). The aim of this study is therefore to make one of the most extensive field data sets from a periglacial catchment readily available that can be used both to describe present-day periglacial processes and to improve predictions of the future. Here we present the sampling and analytical methods, field and laboratory equipment and the resulting biogeochemical data from a state-of-the-art whole-ecosystem investigation of the terrestrial and aquatic parts of a lake catchment in the Kangerlussuaq region, West Greenland. This data set allows for the calculation of whole-ecosystem mass balance budgets for a long list of elements, including carbon, nutrients and major and trace metals. The data set is freely available and can be downloaded from PANGAEA: doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.860961.

  19. Export of aquatic productivity, including highly unsaturated fatty acids, to terrestrial ecosystems via Odonata.

    PubMed

    Popova, Olga N; Haritonov, Anatoly Y; Sushchik, Nadezhda N; Makhutova, Olesia N; Kalachova, Galina S; Kolmakova, Anzhelika A; Gladyshev, Michail I

    2017-03-01

    Based on 31-year field study of the abundance and biomass of 18 species of odonates in the Barabinsk Forest-Steppe (Western Siberia, Russia), we quantified the contribution of odonates to the export of aquatic productivity to surrounding terrestrial landscape. Emergence varied from 0.8 to 4.9g of wet biomass per m(2) of land area per year. Average export of organic carbon was estimated to be 0.30g·m(-2)·year(-1), which is comparable with the average production of herbivorous terrestrial insects in temperate grasslands. Moreover, in contrast to terrestrial insects, emerging odonates contained high quantities of highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA), namely eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n-3, EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3, DHA), which are known to be essential for many terrestrial animals, especially for birds. The export of EPA+DHA by odonates was found to be 1.92-11.76mg·m(-2)·year(-1), which is equal to an average general estimation of the export of HUFA by emerging aquatic insects. Therefore, odonates appeared to be a quantitatively and qualitatively important conduit of aquatic productivity to forest-steppe ecosystem.

  20. Presence of the neurotoxin BMAA in aquatic ecosystems: what do we really know?

    PubMed

    Faassen, Elisabeth J

    2014-03-21

    The neurotoxin β-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) is suspected to play a role in the neurological diseases amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease. BMAA production by cyanobacteria has been reported and contact with cyanobacteria infested waters or consumption of aquatic organisms are possible pathways to human exposure. However, there is little consensus regarding whether BMAA is present in cyanobacteria or not, and if so, at what concentrations. The aim of this review is to indicate the current state of knowledge on the presence of BMAA in aquatic ecosystems. Some studies have convincingly shown that BMAA can be present in aquatic samples at the µg/g dry weight level, which is around the detection limit of some equally credible studies in which no BMAA was detected. However, for the majority of the reviewed articles, it was unclear whether BMAA was correctly identified, either because inadequate analytical methods were used, or because poor reporting of analyses made it impossible to verify the results. Poor analysis, reporting and prolific errors have shaken the foundations of BMAA research. First steps towards estimation of human BMAA exposure are to develop and use selective, inter-laboratory validated methods and to correctly report the analytical work.

  1. Presence of the Neurotoxin BMAA in Aquatic Ecosystems: What Do We Really Know?

    PubMed Central

    Faassen, Elisabeth J.

    2014-01-01

    The neurotoxin β-N-methylamino-l-alanine (BMAA) is suspected to play a role in the neurological diseases amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease. BMAA production by cyanobacteria has been reported and contact with cyanobacteria infested waters or consumption of aquatic organisms are possible pathways to human exposure. However, there is little consensus regarding whether BMAA is present in cyanobacteria or not, and if so, at what concentrations. The aim of this review is to indicate the current state of knowledge on the presence of BMAA in aquatic ecosystems. Some studies have convincingly shown that BMAA can be present in aquatic samples at the µg/g dry weight level, which is around the detection limit of some equally credible studies in which no BMAA was detected. However, for the majority of the reviewed articles, it was unclear whether BMAA was correctly identified, either because inadequate analytical methods were used, or because poor reporting of analyses made it impossible to verify the results. Poor analysis, reporting and prolific errors have shaken the foundations of BMAA research. First steps towards estimation of human BMAA exposure are to develop and use selective, inter-laboratory validated methods and to correctly report the analytical work. PMID:24662480

  2. The basis for ecotoxicological concern in aquatic ecosystems contaminated by historical mercury mining.

    PubMed

    Wiener, James G; Suchanek, Thomas H

    2008-12-01

    The Coast Range of California is one of five global regions that dominated historical production of mercury (Hg) until declining demand led to the economic collapse of the Hg-mining industry in the United States. Calcines, waste rock, and contaminated alluvium from inactive mine sites can release Hg (including methylmercury, MeHg) to the environment for decades to centuries after mining has ceased. Soils, water, and sediment near mines often contain high concentrations of total Hg (TotHg), and an understanding of the biogeochemical transformations, transport, and bioaccumulation of this toxic metal is needed to assess effects of these contaminated environments on humans and wildlife. We briefly review the environmental behavior and effects of Hg, providing a prelude to the subsequent papers in this Special Issue. Clear Lake is a northern California lake contaminated by wastes from the abandoned Sulphur Bank Mercury Mine, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Superfund Site. The primary toxicological problem with Hg in aquatic ecosystems is biotic exposure to MeHg, a highly toxic compound that readily bioaccumulates. Processes that affect the abundance of MeHg (including methylation and demethylation) strongly affect its concentration in all trophic levels of aquatic food webs. MeHg can biomagnify to high concentrations in aquatic food webs, and consumption of fish is the primary pathway for human exposure. Fish consumption advisories have been issued for many North American waters, including Clear Lake and other mine-impacted waters in California, as a means of decreasing MeHg exposure. Concerns about MeHg exposure in humans focus largely on developmental neurotoxicity to the fetus and children. Aquatic food webs are also an important pathway for MeHg exposure of wildlife, which can accumulate high, sometimes harmful, concentrations. In birds, wild mammals, and humans, MeHg readily passes to the developing egg, embryo, or fetus, life stages that are much more

  3. Black spots for aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems: impact of a perennial cormorant colony on the environment.

    PubMed

    Klimaszyk, Piotr; Brzeg, Andrzej; Rzymski, Piotr; Piotrowicz, Ryszard

    2015-06-01

    The global growth of populations of different cormorant species has raised concern on the consequences of their presence in the environment. This study examined the impact of a perennial colony (160 breeding pairs) of great cormorants on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. The deposition of bird-originating nutrients within the area of colony, their accumulation in soils and the fluxed of chemical substances to a nearby lake were investigated. The impact of cormorants on terrestrial vegetation and microbial pollution of the lake were also studied. The soils beneath the colony were found to contain extremely high concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus. The overgrowing vegetation was largely limited with nitrophilous and invasive species being more abundant. Increased loads of organic matter, nitrogen and phosphorus were also found in groundwater and particularly, surface runoff. The colony area delivered significant amounts of nutrients to the lake also when the birds were absent. The lake water near colony was also characterized by increased nutrient content and additionally higher number of faecal bacteria. The present results demonstrate the complexity through which the effect of cormorant colonies can be manifested simultaneously in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem.

  4. Characteristics of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems of two locations in Deaf Smith and Swisher Counties, Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-11-01

    According to the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management Program and the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (P.L. 97-425), a potential nuclear waste repository site must be chosen with consideration of potential impacts on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. This report is a preliminary environmental characterization of two locations in the Texas Panhandle, one in Deaf Smith County and the other in Swisher County, that have been recommended for further study. A description of important natural areas is offered as a basis for comparative studies of the two locations and for the identification and screening of potential repository sites. Information on current land uses, potential habitats, and expected plant and wildlife species is provided to assist field investigators in the collection of baseline data in support of further siting activities. The results of limited field surveys are also included. The report is in two parts. Part I contains a characterization of terrestrial ecological resources based upon limited field surveys aimed at verifying the presence of plant communities and wildlife habitats. It also presents inventories of species with special status, species with recreational and economic importance, and species of ecological value to important or special-status species. Part II presents information on aquatic ecosystems and resources derived primarily from a review of the literature, interviews, and limited field surveys. 21 figures, 18 tables.

  5. Direct and indirect effects of temperature on the population dynamics and ecosystem functioning of aquatic microbial ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Beveridge, Oliver S; Petchey, Owen L; Humphries, Stuart

    2010-11-01

    1. While much is known about the direct effect that temperature can have on aquatic communities, less is known about its indirect effect via the temperature dependence of viscosity and temperature-dependent trophic interactions. 2. We manipulated the temperature (5-20 °C) and the viscosity (equivalent to 5-20 °C) of water in laboratory-based bacteria-protist communities. Communities contained food chains with one, two or three trophic levels. Responses measured were population dynamics (consumer carrying capacity and growth rate, average species population density, and the coefficient of variation of population density through time) and ecosystem function (decomposition). 3. Temperature, viscosity and food chain length produced significant responses in population dynamics. Temperature-dependent viscosity had a significant effect on the carrying capacity and growth rates of consumers, as well as the average density of the top predator. Overall, indirect effects of temperature via changes in viscosity were subtle in comparison to the indirect effect of temperature via trophic interactions. 4. Our results highlight the importance of direct and indirect effects of temperature, mediated through trophic interactions and physical changes in the environment, both for population dynamics and ecosystem processes. Future mechanistic modelling of effects of environmental change on species will benefit from distinguishing the different mechanisms of the overall effect of temperature.

  6. Life cycle impacts of topsoil erosion on aquatic ecosystems: case study on Eucalyptus globulus forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinteiro, Paula; Van de Broek, Marijn; Cláudia Dias, Ana; Ridoutt, Bradley; Arroja, Luís

    2016-04-01

    High concentrations of suspended solids (SS), particularly in the clay and silt size fractions, reaching lotic environments and remaining in suspension can be a significant stressors to the biodiversity of these aquatic systems, degrading the water quality and directly affecting the aquatic biota, namely macroinvertebrates, algae and macrophytes. This damage is presently not considered in Life Cycle Assessment studies. This study is devoted to the effects of SS into freshwater systems due to topsoil erosion by water (environmental mechanism), translated into damage to aquatic ecosystem diversity (endpoint impact category), namely to macroinvertebrates, algae and macrophytes. For this, we have developed a framework to conduct an erosion inventory using the WaTEM/SEDEM model and linked this with, a method to derive regional characterisation for endpoint damage on aquatic ecosystem diversity. A case study was performed for Eucalyptus globulus stands in Portugal, with a functional unit of one hectare of land under production forestry management. To demonstrate how this newly SS ecosystem method can help to improve the environmental assessment in forestry, results were compared with the earlier commonly used impact categories from ReCiPe method. The relevance of the impact from SS delivery to freshwater streams is shown, providing a more comprehensive assessment of the SS impact from land use systems on aquatic environments. The SS impacts ranged from 15.5 to 1234.9 PDF.m3.yr.ha-1.revolution-1 for macroinvertebrates, and from 5.2 to 411.9 PDF.m3.yr.ha-1.revolution-1 for algae and macrophytes. For some stands, SS potential impacts on macroinvertebrates have the same order of magnitude than freshwater eutrophication, freshwater ecotoxicity, terrestrial ecotoxicity and terrestrial acidification impacts. For algae and macrophytes, most of the stands present SS impacts of the same order of magnitude as terrestrial ecotoxicity, one order of magnitude higher than freshwater

  7. Dynamic exchanges between DOM and POM pools in coastal and inland aquatic ecosystems: A review.

    PubMed

    He, Wei; Chen, Meilian; Schlautman, Mark A; Hur, Jin

    2016-05-01

    Dynamic exchanges between dissolved organic matter (DOM) and particulate organic matter (POM) plays a critical role in organic carbon cycling in coastal and inland aquatic ecosystems, interactions with aquatic organisms, mobility and bioavailability of pollutants, among many other ecological and geochemical phenomena. Although DOM-POM exchange processes have been widely studied from different aspects, little to no effort has been made to date to provide a comprehensive, mechanistic, and micro-spatial schema for understanding various exchange processes occurring in different aquatic ecosystems in a unified way. The phenomena occurring between DOM and POM were explained here with the homogeneous and heterogeneous mechanisms. In the homogeneous mechanism, the participating components are only organic matter (OM) constituents themselves with aggregation and dissolution involved, whereas OM is associated with other components such as minerals and particulate colloids in the heterogeneous counterpart. Besides the generally concerned processes of aggregation/dissolution and adsorption/desorption, other ecological factors such as sunlight and organisms can also participate in DOM-POM exchanges through altering the chemical nature of OM. Despite the limitation of current analytical technologies, many unknown and/or unquantified processes need to be identified to unravel the complicated exchanges of OM between its dissolved and particulate states. Based on the review of several previous mathematical models, we proposed a unified conceptual model to describe all major dynamic exchange mechanisms on the basis of exergy theory. More knowledge of dynamic DOM-POM exchanges is warranted to overcome the potential problems arising from a simple division of OM into dissolved versus particulate states and to further develop more sophisticated mathematic models.

  8. Cascading effects of induced terrestrial plant defences on aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem function

    PubMed Central

    Jackrel, Sara L.; Wootton, J. Timothy

    2015-01-01

    Herbivores induce plants to undergo diverse processes that minimize costs to the plant, such as producing defences to deter herbivory or reallocating limited resources to inaccessible portions of the plant. Yet most plant tissue is consumed by decomposers, not herbivores, and these defensive processes aimed to deter herbivores may alter plant tissue even after detachment from the plant. All consumers value nutrients, but plants also require these nutrients for primary functions and defensive processes. We experimentally simulated herbivory with and without nutrient additions on red alder (Alnus rubra), which supplies the majority of leaf litter for many rivers in western North America. Simulated herbivory induced a defence response with cascading effects: terrestrial herbivores and aquatic decomposers fed less on leaves from stressed trees. This effect was context dependent: leaves from fertilized-only trees decomposed most rapidly while leaves from fertilized trees receiving the herbivory treatment decomposed least, suggesting plants funnelled a nutritionally valuable resource into enhanced defence. One component of the defence response was a decrease in leaf nitrogen leading to elevated carbon : nitrogen. Aquatic decomposers prefer leaves naturally low in C : N and this altered nutrient profile largely explains the lower rate of aquatic decomposition. Furthermore, terrestrial soil decomposers were unaffected by either treatment but did show a preference for local and nitrogen-rich leaves. Our study illustrates the ecological implications of terrestrial herbivory and these findings demonstrate that the effects of selection caused by terrestrial herbivory in one ecosystem can indirectly shape the structure of other ecosystems through ecological fluxes across boundaries. PMID:25788602

  9. After the Storm: Assessing the carbon and nitrogen leaching potential from sediments deposited in aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, E. R.; Krieg, C.; Canning, C.; Inamdar, S. P.; Rowland, R. D.

    2015-12-01

    The erosive energy of large storms can mobilize, and subsequently deposit large amounts of sediment in receiving aquatic ecosystems. Depending on the character of the sediments there is potential for leaching or sequestration of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) from the sediments. This could have significant implications for water quality, aquatic metabolism, and global cycling of C and N. This study examines the fate of these sediments by: (1) determining the amount and quality of organic matter that can be leached into the surrounding water from coarse, medium and fine particle classes (2) assessing the C and N contents of various particles classes and the sources of the sediment through isotopic composition. Bed sediment samples were collected along a 1-2nd order stream (eight locations) in a forested catchment in the Piedmont region of Maryland following a large storm event. Samples were sieved into three particle classes - coarse (2mm-1mm), medium (1mm-250µm) and fine (<250µm). Extractions were performed for each of three particle class sizes by leaching with DI water. Organic matter composition for the extracts was characterized using fluorescence. Stable isotopes of 13C and 15N were determined for bed sediment classes and upland source sediments to identify the origins of the eroded sediments. Extracts with low C:N ratios that also exhibit a higher percent protein and lower percent humic carbon content are considered most labile. Within the bed sediment deposits, differences were found in the distribution of labile compounds between each particle class size. Generally, course particle size exhibited the most labile characteristics, closely followed by medium particle size. Fine particle size exhibited the most refractory characteristics in all locations. These results are critical since climate-change predictions reveal more intense and large storms for the northeast US, with potentially greater impacts on aquatic ecosystems from eroded upland sediments.

  10. Effects of UV radiation on aquatic ecosystems and interactions with other environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Häder, Donat-P; Williamson, Craig E; Wängberg, Sten-Åke; Rautio, Milla; Rose, Kevin C; Gao, Kunshan; Helbling, E Walter; Sinha, Rajeshwar P; Worrest, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Interactions between climate change and UV radiation are having strong effects on aquatic ecosystems due to feedback between temperature, UV radiation, and greenhouse gas concentration. Higher air temperatures and incoming solar radiation are increasing the surface water temperatures of lakes and oceans, with many large lakes warming at twice the rate of regional air temperatures. Warmer oceans are changing habitats and the species composition of many marine ecosystems. For some, such as corals, the temperatures may become too high. Temperature differences between surface and deep waters are becoming greater. This increase in thermal stratification makes the surface layers shallower and leads to stronger barriers to upward mixing of nutrients necessary for photosynthesis. This also results in exposure to higher levels of UV radiation of surface-dwelling organisms. In polar and alpine regions decreases in the duration and amount of snow and ice cover on lakes and oceans are also increasing exposure to UV radiation. In contrast, in lakes and coastal oceans the concentration and colour of UV-absorbing dissolved organic matter (DOM) from terrestrial ecosystems is increasing with greater runoff from higher precipitation and more frequent extreme storms. DOM thus creates a refuge from UV radiation that can enable UV-sensitive species to become established. At the same time, decreased UV radiation in such surface waters reduces the capacity of solar UV radiation to inactivate viruses and other pathogens and parasites, and increases the difficulty and price of purifying drinking water for municipal supplies. Solar UV radiation breaks down the DOM, making it more available for microbial processing, resulting in the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. In addition to screening solar irradiance, DOM, when sunlit in surface water, can lead to the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Increases in carbon dioxide are in turn acidifying the oceans and inhibiting

  11. Aquatic bird disease and mortality as an indicator of changing ecosystem health

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Newman, S.H.; Chmura, A.; Converse, K.; Kilpatrick, A.M.; Patel, N.; Lammers, E.; Daszak, P.

    2007-01-01

    We analyzed data from pathologic investigations in the United States, collected by the USGS National Wildlife Health Center between 1971 and 2005, into aquatic bird mortality events. A total of 3619 mortality events was documented for aquatic birds, involving at least 633 708 dead birds from 158 species belonging to 23 families. Environmental causes accounted for the largest proportion of mortality events (1737 or 48%) and dead birds (437 258 or 69%); these numbers increased between 1971 and 2000, with biotoxin mortalities due to botulinum intoxication (Types C and E) being the leading cause of death. Infectious diseases were the second leading cause of mortality events (20%) and dead birds (20 %), with both viral diseases, including duck plague (Herpes virus), paramyxovirus of cormorants (Paramyxovirus PMV1) and West Nile virus (Flavivirus), and bacterial diseases, including avian cholera (Pasteurella multocida), chlamydiosis (Chalmydia psittici), and salmonellosis (Salmonella sp.), contributing. Pelagic, coastal marine birds and species that use marine and freshwater habitats were impacted most frequently by environmental causes of death, with biotoxin exposure, primarily botulinum toxin, resulting in mortalities of both coastal and freshwater species. Pelagic birds were impacted most severely by emaciation and starvation, which may reflect increased anthropogenic pressure on the marine habitat from over-fishing, pollution, and other factors. Our study provides important information on broad trends in aquatic bird mortality and highlights how long-term wildlife disease studies can be used to identify anthropogenic threats to wildlife conservation and ecosystem health. In particular, mortality data for the past 30 yr suggest that biotoxins, viral, and bacterial diseases could have impacted >5 million aquatic birds. ?? Inter-Research 2007.

  12. Aquatic bird disease and mortality as an indicator of changing ecosystem health

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Newman, Scott H.; Chmura, Aleksei; Converse, Kathy; Kilpatrick, A. Marm; Patel, Nikkita; Lammers, Emily; Daszak, Peter

    2007-01-01

    We analyzed data from pathologic investigations in the United States, collected by the USGS National Wildlife Health Center between 1971 and 2005, into aquatic bird mortality events. A total of 3619 mortality events was documented for aquatic birds, involving at least 633 708 dead birds from 158 species belonging to 23 families. Environmental causes accounted for the largest proportion of mortality events (1737 or 48%) and dead birds (437 258 or 69%); these numbers increased between 1971 and 2000, with biotoxin mortalities due to botulinum intoxication (Types C and E) being the leading cause of death. Infectious diseases were the second leading cause of mortality events (20%) and dead birds (20%), with both viral diseases, including duck plague (Herpes virus), paramyxovirus of cormorants (Paramyxovirus PMV1) and West Nile virus (Flavivirus), and bacterial diseases, including avian cholera (Pasteurella multocida), chlamydiosis (Chalmydia psittici), and salmonellosis (Salmonella sp.), contributing. Pelagic, coastal marine birds and species that use marine and freshwater habitats were impacted most frequently by environmental causes of death, with biotoxin exposure, primarily botulinum toxin, resulting in mortalities of both coastal and freshwater species. Pelagic birds were impacted most severely by emaciation and starvation, which may reflect increased anthropogenic pressure on the marine habitat from over-fishing, pollution, and other factors. Our study provides important information on broad trends in aquatic bird mortality and highlights how long-term wildlife disease studies can be used to identify anthropogenic threats to wildlife conservation and ecosystem health. In particular, mortality data for the past 30 yr suggest that biotoxins, viral, and bacterial diseases could have impacted >5 million aquatic birds.

  13. Linking the evolution of habitat choice to ecosystem functioning: direct and indirect effects of pond-reproducing fire salamanders on aquatic-terrestrial subsidies.

    PubMed

    Reinhardt, Timm; Steinfartz, Sebastian; Paetzold, Achim; Weitere, Markus

    2013-09-01

    Shifts in life history traits and in the behaviour of species can potentially alter ecosystem functioning. The reproduction of the central European fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra), which usually deposits its larvae in first-order streams, in small pool and pond-like habitats, is an example of a recent local adaptation in this species. Here we aimed to quantify the direct and indirect effects of the predatory larvae on the aquatic food webs in the ponds and on the flux of matter between the ponds and adjacent terrestrial habitats. Our estimates are based on biomass data of the present pond fauna as well as on the analysis of stomach content data, growth rates and population dynamics of the salamander larvae in pond habitats. By their deposition of larvae in early spring, female fire salamanders import between 0.07 and 2.86 g dry mass m(-2) larval biomass into the ponds. Due to high mortality rates in the larval phase and the relatively small size at metamorphosis of the pond-adapted salamanders compared to stream-adapted ones, the biomass export of the metamorphosed salamanders clearly falls below the initial biomass import. Catastrophic events such as high water temperatures and low oxygen levels may even occasionally result in mass mortalities of salamander larvae and thus in a net 100 % import of the salamander biomass into the pond food webs. Indirect effects further accelerate this net import of matter into the aquatic habitat, e.g. the feeding of salamanders on aquatic insect larvae with the emergence of terrestrial adults-thus preventing export-and on terrestrial organisms that fall on the water surface (supporting import). This study demonstrates that the adaptation of salamanders to pond reproduction can alter food web linkages across ecosystem boundaries by enhancing the flux of materials and energy from terrestrial (i.e. forest) to the aquatic (i.e. pond) habitat.

  14. A Synthesis of the Effects of Pesticides on Microbial Persistence in Aquatic Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Staley, Zachery R.; Harwood, Valerie J.; Rohr, Jason R.

    2016-01-01

    Pesticides are a pervasive presence in aquatic ecosystems throughout the world. While pesticides are intended to control fungi, insects, and other pests, their mechanisms of action are often not specific enough to prevent unintended effects, such as on non-target microbial populations. Microorganisms, including algae and cyanobacteria, protozoa, aquatic fungi, and bacteria, form the basis of many food webs and are responsible for crucial aspects of biogeochemical cycling; therefore, the potential for pesticides to alter microbial community structures must be understood to preserve ecosystem services. This review examines studies that focused on direct population-level effects and indirect community-level effects of pesticides on microorganisms. Generally, insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides were found to have adverse direct effects on algal and fungal species. Insecticides and fungicides also had deleterious direct effects in the majority of studies examining protozoa species, although herbicides were found to have inconsistent direct effects on protozoans. Our synthesis revealed mixed or no direct effects on bacterial species among all pesticide categories, with results highly dependent on the target species, chemical, and concentration used in the study. Examination of community-level, indirect effects revealed that all pesticide categories had a tendency to reduce higher trophic levels, thereby diminishing top-down pressures and favoring lower trophic levels. Often, indirect effects exerted greater influence than direct effects. However, few studies have been conducted to specifically address community-level effects of pesticides on microorganisms and further research is necessary to better understand and predict the net effects of pesticides on ecosystem health. PMID:26565685

  15. Diets of aquatic birds reflect changes in the Lake Huron ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hebert, Craig E.; Weseloh, D.V. Chip; Idrissi, Abode; Arts, Michael T.; Roseman, Edward F.

    2009-01-01

    Human activities have affected the Lake Huron ecosystem, in part, through alterations in the structure and function of its food webs. Insights into the nature of food web change and its ecological ramifications can be obtained through the monitoring of high trophic level predators such as aquatic birds. Often, food web change involves alterations in the relative abundance of constituent species and/or the introduction of new species (exotic invaders). Diet composition of aquatic birds is influenced, in part, by relative prey availability and therefore is a sensitive measure of food web structure. Using bird diet data to make inferences regarding food web change requires consistent measures of diet composition through time. This can be accomplished by measuring stable chemical and/or biochemical “ecological tracers” in archived avian samples. Such tracers provide insights into pathways of energy and nutrient transfer. In this study, we examine the utility of two groups of naturally-occurring intrinsic tracers (stable isotopes and fatty acids) to provide such information in a predatory seabird, the herring gull (Larus argentatus). Retrospective stable nitrogen and carbon isotope analysis of archived herring gull eggs identified declines in gull trophic position and shifts in food sources in Lake Huron over the last 25 years and changes in gull diet composition were inferred from egg fatty acid patterns. These independent groups of ecological tracers provided corroborating evidence of dietary change in this high trophic level predator. Gull dietary shifts were related to declines in prey fish abundance which suggests large-scale alterations to the Lake Huron ecosystem. Dietary shifts in herring gulls may be contributing to reductions in resources available for egg formation. Further research is required to evaluate how changes in resource availability may affect population sustainability in herring gulls and other waterbird species. Long-term biological monitoring

  16. Using Remotely Sensed Data and Watershed and Hydrodynamic Models to Evaluate the Effects of Land Cover Land Use Change on Aquatic Ecosystems in Mobile Bay, AL

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Al-Hamdan, Mohammad Z.; Estes, Maurice G., Jr.; Judd, Chaeli; Thom, Ron; Woodruff, Dana; Ellis, Jean T.; Quattrochi, Dale; Watson, Brian; Rodriquez, Hugo; Johnson, Hoyt

    2012-01-01

    Alabama coastal systems have been subjected to increasing pressure from a variety of activities including urban and rural development, shoreline modifications, industrial activities, and dredging of shipping and navigation channels. The impacts on coastal ecosystems are often observed through the use of indicator species. One such indicator species for aquatic ecosystem health is submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV). Watershed and hydrodynamic modeling has been performed to evaluate the impact of land cover land use (LCLU) change in the two counties surrounding Mobile Bay (Mobile and Baldwin) on SAV stressors and controlling factors (temperature, salinity, and sediment) in the Mobile Bay estuary. Watershed modeling using the Loading Simulation Package in C++ (LSPC) was performed for all watersheds contiguous to Mobile Bay for LCLU scenarios in 1948, 1992, 2001, and 2030. Remotely sensed Landsat-derived National Land Cover Data (NLCD) were used in the 1992 and 2001 simulations after having been reclassified to a common classification scheme. The Prescott Spatial Growth Model was used to project the 2030 LCLU scenario based on current trends. The LSPC model simulations provided output on changes in flow, temperature, and sediment for 22 discharge points into the estuary. These results were inputted in the Environmental Fluid Dynamics Computer Code (EFDC) hydrodynamic model to generate data on changes in temperature, salinity, and sediment on a grid throughout Mobile Bay and adjacent estuaries. The changes in the aquatic ecosystem were used to perform an ecological analysis to evaluate the impact on SAV habitat suitability. This is the key product benefiting the Mobile Bay coastal environmental managers that integrates the influences of temperature, salinity, and sediment due to LCLU driven flow changes with the restoration potential of SAVs. Data products and results are being integrated into NOAA s EcoWatch and Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas online systems for

  17. Fluxes of terrestrial and aquatic carbon by emergent mosquitoes: a test of controls and implications for cross-ecosystem linkages.

    PubMed

    Kraus, Johanna M; Vonesh, James R

    2012-12-01

    Adult aquatic insects are a common resource for many terrestrial predators, often considered to subsidize terrestrial food webs. However, larval aquatic insects themselves consume both aquatic primary producers and allochthonous terrestrial detritus, suggesting that adults could provide aquatic subsidy and/or recycled terrestrial energy to terrestrial consumers. Understanding the source of carbon (aquatic vs. terrestrial) driving aquatic insect emergence is important for predicting magnitude of emergence and effects on recipient food web dynamics; yet direct experimental tests of factors determining source are lacking. Here, we use Culex mosquitoes in experimental pools as an exemplar to test how variation in general factors common to aquatic systems (terrestrial plant inputs and light) may alter the source and amount of energy exported to terrestrial ecosystems in adult aquatic insects that rely on terrestrial resources as larvae. We found strong sequential effects of terrestrial plant inputs and light on aquatic insect oviposition, diet, and emergence of Culex mosquitoes. Ovipositing mosquitoes laid ~3 times more egg masses in high terrestrial input pools under low light conditions. This behavior increased adult emergence from pools under low light conditions; however, high input pools (which had the highest mosquito densities) showed low emergence rates due to density-dependent mortality. Mosquito diets consisted mainly of terrestrial resources (~70-90 %). As a result, the amount of aquatic carbon exported from pools by mosquitoes during the experiment was ~18 times higher from low versus high light pools, while exports of terrestrial carbon peaked from pools receiving intermediate levels of inputs (3-6 times higher) and low light (~6 times higher). Our results suggest that understanding the interplay among terrestrial plant inputs, light availability and biotic responses of aquatic insects may be key in predicting source and magnitude of emergence, and thus

  18. [Aquatic ecosystem modelling approach: temperature and water quality models applied to Oualidia and Nador lagoons].

    PubMed

    Idrissi, J Lakhdar; Orbi, A; Hilmi, K; Zidane, F; Moncef, M

    2005-07-01

    The objective of this work is to develop an aquatic ecosystem and apply it on Moroccan lagoon systems. This model will keep us abreast of the yearly development of the main parameters that characterize these ecosystems while integrating all the data that have so far been acquired. Within this framework, a simulation model of the thermal system and a model of the water quality have been elaborated. These models, which have been simulated on the lagoon of Oualidia (North of Morocco) and validated on the lagoon of Nador (North West Mediterranean), permit to foresee the cycles of temperature of the surface and the parameters of the water quality (dissolved oxygen and biomass phytoplankton) by using meteorological information, specific features and in situ measurements in the studied sites. The elaborated model, called Zero-Dimensional, simulates the average conduct of the site during the time of variable states that are representatives of the studied ecosystem. This model will provide answers for the studied phenomena and is a work tool adequate for numerical simplicity.

  19. Invisible invaders: non-pathogenic invasive microbes in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Litchman, Elena

    2010-12-01

    Although the number of studies on invasive plants and animals has risen exponentially, little is known about invasive microbes, especially non-pathogenic ones. Microbial invasions by viruses, bacteria, fungi and protists occur worldwide but are much harder to detect than invasions by macroorganisms. Invasive microbes have the potential to significantly alter community structure and ecosystem functioning in diverse terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Consequently, increased attention is needed on non-pathogenic invasive microbes, both free-living and symbiotic, and their impacts on communities and ecosystems. Major unknowns include the characteristics that make microbes invasive and properties of the resident communities and the environment that facilitate invasions. A comparison of microbial invasions with invasions of macroorganisms should provide valuable insights into general principles that apply to invasions across all domains of life and to taxon-specific invasion patterns. Invasive microbes appear to possess traits thought to be common in many invasive macroorganisms: high growth rate and resource utilization efficiency, and superior competitive abilities. Invading microorganisms are often similar to native species, but with enhanced performance traits, and tend to spread in lower diversity communities. Global change can exacerbate microbial invasions; therefore, they will likely increase in the future.

  20. Microsatellite markers for Nuphar japonica (Nymphaeaceae), an aquatic plant in the agricultural ecosystem of Japan1

    PubMed Central

    Kondo, Toshiaki; Watanabe, Sonoko; Shiga, Takashi; Isagi, Yuji

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Nuphar species (Nymphaeaceae) are representative aquatic plants in irrigation ponds in Japanese agricultural ecosystems. We developed 15 polymorphic microsatellite markers for N. japonica and confirmed their utility for its close relatives N. oguraensis var. akiensis and N. ×saijoensis, which originated from natural hybridization between N. japonica and N. oguraensis. Methods and Results: Genetic variation was characterized in 15 polymorphic loci in three populations of N. japonica. The average number of alleles per locus was 3.47 (range = 2−9; n = 32), and the average expected heterozygosity per locus was 0.84 (range = 0.5–1.0); 11 loci were amplified in N. oguraensis var. akiensis and 15 in N. ×saijoensis. Conclusions: The polymorphic microsatellite markers developed in this study will be useful for investigating the levels of genetic diversity within remnant populations of Nuphar taxa and could provide a valuable tool for conservation genetics of these taxa. PMID:28101435

  1. Effects of wildfire on source-water quality and aquatic ecosystems, Colorado Front Range

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Writer, Jeffrey H.; McClelskey, R. Blaine; Murphy, Sheila F.

    2012-01-01

    Watershed erosion can dramatically increase after wildfire, but limited research has evaluated the corresponding influence on source-water quality. This study evaluated the effects of the Fourmile Canyon wildfire (Colorado Front Range, USA) on source-water quality and aquatic ecosystems using high-frequency sampling. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and nutrient loads in stream water were evaluated for a one-year period during different types of runoff events, including spring snowmelt, and both frontal and summer convective storms. DOC export from the burned watershed did not increase relative to the unburned watershed during spring snowmelt, but substantial increases in DOC export were observed during summer convective storms. Elevated nutrient export from the burned watershed was observed during spring snowmelt and summer convective storms, which increased the primary productivity of stream biofilms. Wildfire effects on source-water quality were shown to be substantial following high-intensity storms, with the potential to affect drinking-water treatment processes.

  2. Mapping critical loads of nitrogen deposition for aquatic ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nanus, Leora; Clow, David W.; Saros, Jasmine E.; Stephens, Verlin C.; Campbell, Donald H.

    2012-01-01

    Spatially explicit estimates of critical loads of nitrogen (N) deposition (CLNdep) for nutrient enrichment in aquatic ecosystems were developed for the Rocky Mountains, USA, using a geostatistical approach. The lowest CLNdep estimates (-1 yr-1) occurred in high-elevation basins with steep slopes, sparse vegetation, and abundance of exposed bedrock and talus. These areas often correspond with areas of high N deposition (>3 kg N ha-1 yr-1), resulting in CLNdep exceedances ≥1.5 ± 1 kg N ha-1 yr-1. CLNdep and CLNdep exceedances exhibit substantial spatial variability related to basin characteristics and are highly sensitive to the NO3- threshold at which ecological effects are thought to occur. Based on an NO3- threshold of 0.5 μmol L-1, N deposition exceeds CLNdep in 21 ± 8% of the study area; thus, broad areas of the Rocky Mountains may be impacted by excess N deposition, with greatest impacts at high elevations.

  3. Introduction to the effects of wildland fire on aquatic ecosystems in the Western USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rieman, B.; Gresswell, Robert E.; Young, M.; Luce, C.

    2003-01-01

    The management of wildfire has long been controversial. The role of fire and fire-related management in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems has become an important focus in recent years, but the general debate is not new. In his recent book, Stephen Pyne (2001)describes the political and scientific debate surrounding the creation of the U.S. Forest Service and the emergence of fire suppression as a central tenet of wildland management. Essentially, views in the first decade of the 20th century focused on fire as good or evil: a tool that might benefit other resources or interests (e.g. Indian burning) and mitigate larger more destructive fires, or a threat to the recruitment and productivity of newly designated forest reserves. The “great fires” in the Western USA in 1910 and the associated loss of human life and property largely forged the public and political will to suppress fire on a massive scale.

  4. Managing wastewater effluent to enhance aquatic receiving ecosystem productivity: a coastal lagoon in Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Machado, Daniel A; Imberger, Jörg

    2012-05-30

    Large amounts of waste are generated in urban centers that if properly managed could promote ecological services. In order to promote nutrient cycling and productivity without endangering aquatic ecosystems, management of wastewater treatment and effluent discharges to receiving waters must be assessed on a case-by-case basis. We applied this premise to examine a municipal wastewater treated effluent discharge in a shallow oligotrophic coastal lagoon in Western Australia. Three-dimensional hydrodynamic-ecological modeling (ELCOM-CAEDYM) was used to assess the reaction of ecosystem for effluent quality. Two scenarios were evaluated for the summer 2000-2001 period, the actual or "current" (conventional secondary treatment) and an "alternative" (involving substitution of biological nutrient removal by advanced treatment). The residence time of the simulated numerical domain averaged 8.4 ± 1.3 days. For the current scenario the model successfully estimated phytoplankton biomass, as chlorophyll-a concentration (Chl-a), that is within field-measured ranges and previously recorded levels. The model was able to reproduce nitrogen as the main limiting nutrient for primary production in the coastal ecosystem. Simulated surface Chl-a means were 0.26 (range 0.19-0.38) μg Chl-a/L for the current scenario and 0.37 (range 0.19-0.67) μg Chl-a/L for the alternative one. Comparison of the alternative scenario with field-measured Chl-a levels suggests moderate primary production increase (16-42%), within local historical variability. These results, suggest that such a scenario could be used, as part of a comprehensive wastewater management optimization strategy, to foster receiving ecosystem's productivity and related ecological services maintaining its oligotrophic state.

  5. Trophic interactions determine the effects of drought on an aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Amundrud, Sarah L; Srivastava, Diane S

    2016-06-01

    Species interactions can be important mediators of community and ecosystem responses to environmental stressors. However, we still lack a mechanistic understanding of the indirect ecological effects of stress that arise via altered species interactions. To understand how species interactions will be altered by environmental stressors, we need to know if the species that are vulnerable to such stressors also have large impacts on the ecosystem. As predators often exhibit certain traits that are linked to a high vulnerability to stress (e.g., large body size, long generation time), as well as having large effects on communities (e.g., top-down trophic effects), predators may be particularly likely to mediate ecological effects of environmental stress. Other functional groups, like facilitators, are known to have large impacts on communities, but their vulnerability to perturbations remains undocumented. Here, we use aquatic insect communities in bromeliads to examine the indirect effects of an important stressor (drought) on community and ecosystem responses. In a microcosm experiment, we manipulated predatory and facilitative taxa under a range of experimental droughts, and quantified effects on community structure and ecosystem function. Drought, by adversely affecting the top predator, had indirect cascading effects on the entire food web, altering community composition and decomposition. We identified the likely pathway of how drought cascaded through the food web from the top-down as drought -->predator --> shredder --> decomposition. This stress-induced cascade depended on predators exhibiting both a strong vulnerability to drought and large impacts on prey (especially shredders), as well as shredders exhibiting high functional importance as decomposers.

  6. Bioaccumulation of heavy metals in Mbaa River and the impact on aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Ajima, M N O; Nnodi, P C; Ogo, O A; Adaka, G S; Osuigwe, D I; Njoku, D C

    2015-12-01

    The bioaccumulation and toxic effects of heavy metals have caused ecological damage to aquatic ecosystem. In this study, concentration of heavy metals including zinc, lead, cadmium, iron, and copper were determined in the sediment and water as well as in the muscle, gill, and intestine of two fish species (Pelmatochromis guentheri and Pelmatochromis pulcher) of Mbaa River in Southeastern Nigeria. Samples were collected at three different spots from the river, and the level of heavy metals specified above were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS) after a modified wet digestion process. The results indicated that sediment had the highest concentration of the heavy metals investigated while water had the lowest concentration. Fish tissues showed appreciable bioaccumulation of these metals as evidenced by a higher concentration profile when compared with that of water. Furthermore, the concentration of these heavy metals in water and their bioconcentration factor in the fish were above the recommended limit by WHO and FEPA, indicating that Mbaa River along Inyishi may not be suitable for drinking nor the fish safe for human consumption. The study also reveals the use of fish as bioindicator of aquatic environment.

  7. Ecotoxic heavy metals transformation by bacteria and fungi in aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Chaturvedi, Amiy Dutt; Pal, Dharm; Penta, Santhosh; Kumar, Awanish

    2015-10-01

    Water is the most important and vital molecule of our planet and covers 75% of earth surface. But it is getting polluted due to high industrial growth. The heavy metals produced by industrial activities are recurrently added to it and considered as dangerous pollutants. Increasing concentration of toxic heavy metals (Pb(2+), Cd(2+), Hg(2+), Ni(2+)) in water is a severe threat for human. Heavy metal contaminated water is highly carcinogenic and poisonous at even relatively low concentrations. When they discharged in water bodies, they dissolve in the water and are distributed in the food chain. Bacteria and fungi are efficient microbes that frequently transform heavy metals and remove toxicity. The application of bacteria and fungi may offer cost benefit in water treatment plants for heavy metal transformation and directly related to public health and environmental safety issues. The heavy metals transformation rate in water is also dependent on the enzymatic capability of microorganisms. By transforming toxic heavy metals microbes sustain aquatic and terrestrial life. Therefore the application of microbiological biomass for heavy metal transformation and removal from aquatic ecosystem is highly significant and striking. This paper reviews the microbial transformation of heavy metal, microbe metal interaction and different approaches for microbial heavy metal remediation from water bodies.

  8. PCB Food Web Dynamics Quantify Nutrient and Energy Flow in Aquatic Ecosystems.

    PubMed

    McLeod, Anne M; Paterson, Gordon; Drouillard, Ken G; Haffner, G Douglas

    2015-11-03

    Measuring in situ nutrient and energy flows in spatially and temporally complex aquatic ecosystems represents a major ecological challenge. Food web structure, energy and nutrient budgets are difficult to measure, and it is becoming more important to quantify both energy and nutrient flow to determine how food web processes and structure are being modified by multiple stressors. We propose that polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners represent an ideal tracer to quantify in situ energy and nutrient flow between trophic levels. Here, we demonstrate how an understanding of PCB congener bioaccumulation dynamics provides multiple direct measurements of energy and nutrient flow in aquatic food webs. To demonstrate this novel approach, we quantified nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and caloric turnover rates for Lake Huron lake trout, and reveal how these processes are regulated by both growth rate and fish life history. Although minimal nutrient recycling was observed in young growing fish, slow growing, older lake trout (>5 yr) recycled an average of 482 Tonnes·yr(-1) of N, 45 Tonnes·yr(-1) of P and assimilated 22 TJ yr(-1) of energy. Compared to total P loading rates of 590 Tonnes·yr(-1), the recycling of primarily bioavailable nutrients by fish plays an important role regulating the nutrient states of oligotrophic lakes.

  9. Comparative floc-bed sediment trace element partitioning across variably contaminated aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Elliott, Amy V C; Plach, Janina M; Droppo, Ian G; Warren, Lesley A

    2012-01-03

    Significantly higher concentrations of Ag, As, Cu, Ni and Co are found in floc compared to bed sediments across six variably impacted aquatic ecosystems. In contrast to the observed element and site-specific bed sediment trace element (TE) partitioning patterns, floc TE sequestration is consistently dominated by amorphous oxyhydroxides (FeOOH), which account for 30-79% of floc total TE concentrations, irrespective of system physico-chemistry or elements involved. FeOOH consistently occur in significantly higher concentrations in floc than within bed sediments. Further, comparative concentration factors indicate significantly higher TE reactivity of floc-FeOOH relative to sediment-FeOOH in all systems investigated, indicating that both the greater abundance and higher reactivity of floc-FeOOH contribute to enhanced floc TE uptake. Results indicate that floc-organics (live cells and exopolymeric substances, EPS) directly predict floc-FeOOH concentrations, suggesting an organic structural role in the collection/templating of FeOOH. This, in turn, facilitates the sequestration of TEs associated with floc-FeOOH formation, imparting the conserved FeOOH "signature" on floc TE geochemistry across sites. Results demonstrate that the organic rich nature of floc exerts an important control over TE geochemistry in aquatic environments, ultimately creating a distinct solid with differing controls over TE behavior than bed sediments in close proximity (<0.5 m).

  10. Characterizing the oxygen isotopic composition of phosphate sources to aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Young, M.B.; McLaughlin, K.; Kendall, C.; Stringfellow, W.; Rollog, M.; Elsbury, K.; Donald, E.; Paytan, A.

    2009-01-01

    The oxygen isotopic composition of dissolved inorganic phosphate (δ18Op) in many aquatic ecosystems is not in isotopic equilibrium with ambient water and, therefore, may reflect the source δ18Op. Identification of phosphate sources to water bodies is critical for designing best management practices for phosphate load reduction to control eutrophication. In order for δ18O p to be a useful tool for source tracking, the δ18Op of phosphate sources must be distinguishable from one another; however, the δ18Op of potential sources has not been well characterized. We measured the δ18O p of a variety of known phosphate sources, including fertilizers, semiprocessed phosphorite ore, particulate aerosols, detergents, leachates of vegetation, soil, animal feces, and wastewater treatment plant effluent. We found a considerable range of δ18Op values (from +8.4 to +24.9‰) for the various sources, and statistically significant differences were found between several of the source types. δ18Op measured in three different fresh water systems was generally not in equilibrium with ambient water. Although there is overlap in δ18Op values among the groups of samples, our results indicate that some sources are isotopically distinct and δ18Op can be used for identifying phosphate sources to aquatic systems.

  11. Biological effects of wood ash application to forest and aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Aronsson, K Andreas; Ekelund, Nils G A

    2004-01-01

    The present review aims to summarize current knowledge in the topic of wood ash application to boreal forest and aquatic ecosystems, and the different effects derived from these actions. Much research has been conducted regarding the effects of wood ash application on forest growth. Present studies show that, generally speaking, forest growth can be increased on wood ash-ameliorated peatland rich in nitrogen. On mineral soils, however, no change or even decreased growth have been reported. The effects on ground vegetation are not very clear, as well as the effects on fungi, soil microbes, and soil-decomposing animals. The discrepancies between different studies are for the most part explained by abiotic factors such as variation in fertility among sites, different degrees of stabilization, and wood ash dosage used, and different time scales among different studies. The lack of knowledge in the field of aquatic ecosystems and their response to ash application is an important issue for future research. The few studies conducted have mainly considered changes in water chemistry. The biotoxic effects of ash application can roughly be divided into two categories: primary and secondary. Among the primary effects is toxicity deriving from compounds in the wood ash and cadmium is probably the worst among these. The secondary effects of wood ash are generally due to its alkaline capacity and a release of ions into the soil and soil water, and finally, watercourses and lakes. Given current knowledge, we would recommend site- and wood ash-specific application practices, rather than broad and general guidelines for wood ash application to forests.

  12. Scaling hyporheic exchange and its influence on biogeochemical reactions in aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Connor, B.L.; Harvey, J.W.

    2008-01-01

    Hyporheic exchange and biogeochemical reactions are difficult to quantify because of the range in fluid-flow and sediment conditions inherent to streams, wetlands, and nearshore marine ecosystems. Field measurements of biogeochemical reactions in aquatic systems are impeded by the difficulty of measuring hyporheic flow simultaneously with chemical gradients in sediments. Simplified models of hyporheic exchange have been developed using Darcy's law generated by flow and bed topography at the sediment-water interface. However, many modes of transport are potentially involved (molecular diffusion, bioturbation, advection, shear, bed mobility, and turbulence) with even simple models being difficult to apply in complex natural systems characterized by variable sediment sizes and irregular bed geometries. In this study, we synthesize information from published hyporheic exchange investigations to develop a scaling relationship for estimating mass transfer in near-surface sediments across a range in fluid-flow and sediment conditions. Net hyporheic exchange was quantified using an effective diffusion coefficient (De) that integrates all of the various transport processes that occur simultaneously in sediments, and dimensional analysis was used to scale De to shear stress velocity, roughness height, and permeability that describe fluid-flow and sediment characteristics. We demonstrated the value of the derived scaling relationship by using it to quantify dissolved oxygen (DO) uptake rates on the basis of DO profiles in sediments and compared them to independent flux measurements. The results support a broad application of the De scaling relationship for quantifying coupled hyporheic exchange and biogeochemical reaction rates in streams and other aquatic ecosystems characterized by complex fluid-flow and sediment conditions.

  13. The use of Chironomus riparius larvae to assess effects of pesticides from rice fields in adjacent freshwater ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Faria, Mafalda S; Nogueira, António J A; Soares, Amadeu M V M

    2007-06-01

    A bioassay with Chironomus riparius larvae, using larval development and growth as endpoints, was carried out inside a rice field and in the adjacent wetland channel in Portugal, during pesticide treatments (molinate, endosulfan and propanil) to determine impact caused by pesticide contamination in freshwater ecosystems. The bioassay was also performed under laboratory conditions, to assess whether in situ and laboratory bioassays demonstrated comparable results. Growth was inhibited by concentrations of endosulfan (2.3 and 1.9 microgL(-1) averages) in water from rice field in both the field and laboratory, and by concentrations of endosulfan (0.55 and 0.76 microgL(-1) averages) in water from the wetland channel in the laboratory bioassay, while development was not affected. C. riparius larvae were not affected by molinate and propanil concentrations. The results indicate that endosulfan treatments in rice fields may cause an ecological impairment in adjacent freshwater ecosystems. The results also indicate that laboratory testing can be used to assess in situ toxicity caused by pesticide contamination.

  14. Solar energy development and aquatic ecosystems in the southwestern United States: potential impacts, mitigation, and research needs.

    PubMed

    Grippo, Mark; Hayse, John W; O'Connor, Ben L

    2015-01-01

    The cumulative impacts of utility-scale solar energy facilities on aquatic ecosystems in the Southwestern United States are of concern, considering the many existing regional anthropogenic stressors. We review the potential impacts of solar energy development on aquatic habitat and biota. The greatest potential for impacts is related to the loss, fragmentation, or prolonged drying of ephemeral water bodies and drainage networks resulting from the loss of desert washes within the construction footprint of the facility. Groundwater-dependent aquatic habitat may also be affected by operational groundwater withdrawal in the case of water-intensive solar technologies. Solar panels have also been found to attract aquatic insects and waterbirds, potentially resulting in mortality. Avoiding construction activity near perennial and intermittent surface waters is the primary means of reducing impacts on aquatic habitats, followed by measures to minimize erosion, sedimentation, and contaminant inputs into waterways. Currently, significant data gaps make solar facility impact assessment and mitigation more difficult. Examples include the need for more regional and site-specific studies of surface-groundwater connectivity, more detailed maps of regional stream networks and riparian vegetation corridors, as well as surveys of the aquatic communities inhabiting ephemeral streams. In addition, because they often lack regulatory protection, there is also a need to develop valuation criteria for ephemeral waters based on their ecological and hydrologic function within the landscape. By addressing these research needs, we can achieve the goal of greater reliance on solar energy, while at the same time minimizing impacts on desert ecosystems.

  15. [Assessment of ecosystem energy flow and carrying capacity of swimming crab enhancement in the Yellow River estuary and adjacent waters].

    PubMed

    Lin Qun; Wang, Jun; Li, Zhong-yi; Wu, Qiang

    2015-11-01

    Stock enhancement is increasingly proved to be an important measure of the fishery resources conservation, and the assessment of carrying capacity is the decisive factor of the effects of stock enhancement. Meanwhile, the variations in the energy flow patterns of releasing species and ecosystem were the basis for assessing carrying capacity of stock enhancement. So, in the present study, based on the survey data collected from the Yellow River estuary and adjacent waters during 2012-2013, three Ecopath mass-balance models were established in June, August and October, and the variations in ecosystem energy flow in these months were analyzed, as well as the assessment of carrying capacity of swimming crab enhancement. The energy flow mainly concentrated on trophic level I-III in Yellow River estuary and adjacent waters, and was relatively less on trophic level IV or above. The system flow proportion on the trophic level I was the highest in June, and was the lowest in August. The highest system flow proportion on the trophic level II was found in August, and the lowest in June. The relative and absolute energy flow of swimming crab mainly concentrated on the trophic level III, and the mean trophic level of swimming crab among June, August and October were 3.28. Surplus production was relatively higher in Yellow River estuary and adjacent waters, the highest value was found in June, and the lowest value in August. The ratios of total primary production/total respiration (TPP/TR) were 5.49, 2.47 and 3.01 in June, August and October, respectively, and the ratios of total primary production/total biomass (TPP/B) were 47.61, 33.30 and 29.78, respectively. Combined with the low Finn' s cycling index (FCI: 0.03-0.06), these changes indicated that the Yellow River estuary ecosystem was at an early development stage with higher vulnerability. The energy conversion efficiency of system was from 7.3% to 11.5%, the mean trophic levels of the catch were 3.23, 2.97 and 2.82 in

  16. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields (2011 Final)

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA announced the availability of the final report, The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields. This report assesses the state of the science on the environmental impacts of mountaintop mines and valley ...

  17. Aquatic Ecosystems, Water Quality, and Global Change: Challenges of Conducting Multi-Stressor Vulnerability Assessments (Final Report)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report investigates the issues and challenges associated with identifying, calculating, and mapping indicators of the relative vulnerability of water quality and aquatic ecosystems, across the United States, to the potential impacts of global change. Using a large set of en...

  18. Derivation of guideline values for gold (III) ion toxicity limits to protect aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Nam, Sun-Hwa; Lee, Woo-Mi; Shin, Yu-Jin; Yoon, Sung-Ji; Kim, Shin Woong; Kwak, Jin Il; An, Youn-Joo

    2014-01-01

    This study focused on estimating the toxicity values of various aquatic organisms exposed to gold (III) ion (Au(3+)), and to propose maximum guideline values for Au(3+) toxicity that protect the aquatic ecosystem. A comparative assessment of methods developed in Australia and New Zealand versus the European Community (EC) was conducted. The test species used in this study included two bacteria (Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis), one alga (Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata), one euglena (Euglena gracilis), three cladocerans (Daphnia magna, Moina macrocopa, and Simocephalus mixtus), and two fish (Danio rerio and Oryzias latipes). Au(3+) induced growth inhibition, mortality, immobilization, and/or developmental malformations in all test species, with responses being concentration-dependent. According to the moderate reliability method of Australia and New Zealand, 0.006 and 0.075 mg/L of guideline values for Au(3+) were obtained by dividing 0.33 and 4.46 mg/L of HC5 and HC50 species sensitivity distributions (SSD) with an FACR (Final Acute to Chronic Ratio) of 59.09. In contrast, the EC method uses an assessment factor (AF), with the 0.0006 mg/L guideline value for Au(3+) being divided with the 48-h EC50 value for 0.60 mg/L (the lowest toxicity value obtained from short term results) by an AF of 1000. The Au(3+) guideline value derived using an AF was more stringent than the SSD. We recommend that more toxicity data using various bioassays are required to develop more accurate ecological risk assessments. More chronic/long-term exposure studies on sensitive endpoints using additional fish species and invertebrates not included in the current dataset will be needed to use other derivation methods (e.g., US EPA and Canadian Type A) or the "High Reliability Method" from Australia/New Zealand. Such research would facilitate the establishment of guideline values for various pollutants that reflect the universal effects of various pollutants in aquatic ecosystems. To

  19. Effects of anthropogenic nitrogen input on the aquatic food webs of river ecosystem in central Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohte, N.; Togashi, H.; Tokuchi, N.; Yoshimura, M.; Kato, Y.; Ishikawa, N. F.; Osaka, K.; Kondo, M.; Tayasu, I.

    2014-12-01

    To evaluate the impact of the anthropogenic nitrogen input to the river ecosystem, we conducted the monitoring on nutrient status of river waters and food web structures of aquatic organisms. Especially, changes of sources and concentration of nitrate (NO3-) in river water were focused to evaluate the impact of anthropogenic nitrogen loadings from agricultural and residential areas. Stable nitrogen isotope ratio (δ15N) of aquatic organisms has also intensively been monitored not only to describe their food web structure, but also to detect the influences of extraneous nitrogen inputs. Field samplings an observation campaigns were conducted in the Arida river watershed located in central part of Japan at four different seasons from September 2011 to October 2012. Five observation points were set from headwaters to the point just above the brackish waters starts. Water samples for chemical analysis were taken at the observation points for each campaign. Organisms including leaf litters, benthic algae, aquatic insects, crustacean, and fishes were sampled at each point quantitatively. Results of the riverine survey utilizing 5 regular sampling points showed that δ15N of nitrate (NO3-) increased from forested upstream (˜2 ‰) to the downstream (˜7 ‰) due to the sewage loads and fertilizer effluents from agricultural area. Correspondingly the δ15N of benthic algae and aquatic insects increased toward the downstream. This indicates that primary producers of each reach strongly relied on the local N sources and it was utilized effectively in their food web. Simulation using a GIS based mixing model considering the spatial distributions of human population density and fertilizer effluents revealed that strongest impacts of N inputs was originated from organic fertilizers applied to orchards in the middle to lower parts of catchment. Differences in δ15N between primary producers and predators were 6-7 ‰ similarly at all sampling points. Food web structural

  20. Bioassessment of contaminant transport and distribution in aquatic ecosystems by chemical analysis of burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steingraeber, M.T.; Wiener, J.G.

    1995-01-01

    Burrowing mayfly nymphs (Ephemeroptera) inhabit and ingest fine-grained sediments and detritus that may be enriched with metals and persistent organic compounds. The burrowing nymphs can externally adsorb and internally assimilate these contaminants, providing a link for the food chain transfer of potentially toxic substances from sediments to organisms in higher trophic levels. The emergent adults are short-lived and do not feed, thus their gut contents do not contribute greatly to their total contaminant burden. These characteristics make Hexagenia spp. And certain other burrowing mayflies useful for assessing ecosystem contamination. General protocols are presented for the collection, processing and analysis of emergent mayflies to assess the spatial distribution and bioaccumulation of sediment-associated contaminants in aquatic ecosystems. Two essential components of this bioassessment approach are a network of on-site volunteers with the materials and instructions needed to correctly collect and store samples and quality assurance procedures to estimate the accuracy of chemical analyses. The utility of this approach is demonstrated with an example of its application to the Upper Mississippi River (USA). Determination of cadmium, mercury and polychlorinated biphenyl congeners in emergent Hexagenia bilineata from a 1250 km reach of this river revealed (1) several source areas of contaminants and (2) distinct patterns in the bioaccumulation (and apparent sediment-associated transport) of each residue on both small and large spatial scales.

  1. Climate regulates alpine lake ice cover phenology and aquatic ecosystem structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Preston, Daniel L.; Caine, Nel; McKnight, Diane M.; Williams, Mark W.; Hell, Katherina; Miller, Matthew P.; Hart, Sarah J.; Johnson, Pieter T. J.

    2016-05-01

    High-elevation aquatic ecosystems are highly vulnerable to climate change, yet relatively few records are available to characterize shifts in ecosystem structure or their underlying mechanisms. Using a long-term data set on seven alpine lakes (3126 to 3620 m) in Colorado, USA, we show that ice-off dates have shifted 7 days earlier over the past 33 years and that spring weather conditions—especially snowfall—drive yearly variation in ice-off timing. In the most well studied lake, earlier ice-off associated with increases in water residence times, thermal stratification, ion concentrations, dissolved nitrogen, pH, and chlorophyll a. Mechanistically, low spring snowfall and warm temperatures reduce summer stream flow (increasing lake residence times) but enhance melting of glacial and permafrost ice (increasing lake solute inputs). The observed links among hydrological, chemical, and biological responses to climate factors highlight the potential for major shifts in the functioning of alpine lakes due to forecasted climate change.

  2. Stable isotope analysis of energy dynamics in aquatic ecosystems suggests trophic shifts following severe wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martens, A. M.; Silins, U.; Bladon, K. D.; Williams, C.; Wagner, M. J.; Luchkow, E.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfire alters landscapes and can have significant impacts on stream ecosystems. The 2003 Lost Creek wildfire was one of the most severe on Alberta's eastern rocky mountain slopes, resulting in elevated sediment production and nutrient (phosphorus, nitrogen, and carbon) export in impacted streams. These resulted in increased algal productivity and macroinvertebrate abundance and diversity, and as a result, fish in watersheds draining wildfire affected catchments were larger than those in the same age class from reference (unburned) watersheds. In the present investigation, stable isotope analysis of C and N was utilized to evaluate ecosystem energy dynamics and describe trophic relationships in those watersheds. Aquatic invertebrates from burned catchments showed enrichment in δ13C and δ15N relative to algae suggesting a reliance on algae (autochthony) as a primary source of energy. Invertebrates from unburned systems were depleted in δ13C relative to algae indicating reliance on allochthonous or terrestrial primary energy sources. Preliminary analysis of δ15N in macroinvertebrates showed slight enrichment in burned catchments suggesting a trophic shift. More comprehensive macroinvertebrate sampling and identification has been conducted; isotopic analysis will provide greater resolution of how specific families within feeding guilds have been affected by wildfire. This will provide more robust insights into how wildfires may impact stream ecology in mountain environments.

  3. Climate regulates alpine lake ice cover phenology and aquatic ecosystem structure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Preston, Daniel L.; Caine, Nel; McKnight, Diane M.; Williams, Mark W.; Hell, Katherina; Miller, Matthew P.; Hart, Sarah J.; Johnson, Pieter T.J.

    2016-01-01

    High-elevation aquatic ecosystems are highly vulnerable to climate change, yet relatively few records are available to characterize shifts in ecosystem structure or their underlying mechanisms. Using a long-term dataset on seven alpine lakes (3126 to 3620 m) in Colorado, USA, we show that ice-off dates have shifted seven days earlier over the past 33 years and that spring weather conditions – especially snowfall – drive yearly variation in ice-off timing. In the most well-studied lake, earlier ice-off associated with increases in water residence times, thermal stratification, ion concentrations, dissolved nitrogen, pH, and chlorophyll-a. Mechanistically, low spring snowfall and warm temperatures reduce summer stream flow (increasing lake residence times) but enhance melting of glacial and permafrost ice (increasing lake solute inputs). The observed links among hydrological, chemical, and biological responses to climate factors highlight the potential for major shifts in the functioning of alpine lakes due to forecasted climate change.

  4. Reviews and syntheses: Effects of permafrost thaw on Arctic aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Bowden, W. B.; Laurion, I.; Vincent, W. F.; Alekseychik, P.; Amyot, M.; Billet, M. F.; Canário, J.; Cory, R. M.; Deshpande, B. N.; Helbig, M.; Jammet, M.; Karlsson, J.; Larouche, J.; MacMillan, G.; Rautio, M.; Anthony, K. M. Walter; Wickland, K. P.

    2015-12-01

    of dissolved vs. particulate organic matter, coupled with the composition of that organic matter and the morphology and stratification characteristics of recipient systems will play an important role in determining the balance between the release of organic matter as greenhouse gases (CO2 and CH4), its burial in sediments, and its loss downstream. The magnitude of thaw impacts on northern aquatic ecosystems is increasing, as is the prevalence of thaw-impacted lakes and streams. There is therefore an urgent need to quantify how permafrost thaw is affecting aquatic ecosystems across diverse Arctic landscapes, and the implications of this change for further climate warming.

  5. Reviews and Syntheses: Effects of permafrost thaw on arctic aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Bowden, W. B.; Laurion, I.; Vincent, W. F.; Alekseychik, P.; Amyot, M.; Billet, M. F.; Canário, J.; Cory, R. M.; Deshpande, B. N.; Helbig, M.; Jammet, M.; Karlsson, J.; Larouche, J.; MacMillan, G.; Rautio, M.; Anthony, K. M. Walter; Wickland, K. P.

    2015-07-01

    dissolved vs. particulate organic matter, coupled with the composition of that organic matter and the morphology and stratification characteristics of recipient systems will play an important role in determining the balance between the release of organic matter as greenhouse gases (CO2 and CH4), its burial in sediments, and its loss downstream. The magnitude of thaw impacts on northern aquatic ecosystems is increasing, as is the prevalence of thaw-impacted lakes and streams. There is therefore an urgent need to address the key gaps in understanding in order to predict the full effects of permafrost thaw on aquatic ecosystems throughout the Arctic, and their consequential feedbacks to climate.

  6. Carbon Sequestration and Energy Balance of Turf in the Denver Urban Ecosystem and Adjacent Tallgrass Prairie

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thienelt, T.; Anderson, D. E.; Powell, K. M.

    2012-12-01

    Urban ecosystems are currently characterized by rapid growth and are expected to continually expand. They represent an important driver of land use change. A significant component of urban ecosystems is lawns, potentially the single largest irrigated "crop" in the U.S. Between March and October of 2011 and 2012, eddy covariance measurements of net carbon dioxide exchange and evapotranspiration along with energy balance fluxes were conducted for an irrigated, fertilized lawn (rye-bluegrass-mix) in metropolitan Denver and for a nearby tallgrass prairie (big bluestem, switchgrass, cheatgrass, blue grama). Due to the semi-arid climate conditions of the Denver region, differences in management (i.e., irrigation and fertilization) are expected to have a discernible impact on ecosystem productivity and thus on carbon sequestration rates, evapotranspiration, and the partitioning of sensible and latent heat. Data for the 2011 season showed that cumulative evapotranspiration was approximately 600 mm for the urban lawn and 305 mm for the tallgrass prairie; cumulative carbon sequestration was calculated to be 172 and 85 g C/m2, respectively. Also, patterns of carbon exchange differed between the grasslands. In 2011, both sites showed daily net uptake of carbon starting in late May, but the urban lawn displayed greater diurnal variability as well as greater uptake rates in general, especially following fertilization in mid-June. In contrast, the trend of carbon uptake at the prairie site was occasionally reversed following strong convective precipitation events, resulting in a temporary net release of carbon. Preliminary data for the 2012 season (up to early July) indicated an earlier start of net carbon uptake and higher cumulative evapotranspiration for both locations, likely due to a warm spring. The continuing acquisition of data and investigation of these relations will help assess the potential impact of urban growth on regional carbon sequestration.

  7. Transfer, transformation, and impacts of ceria nanomaterials in aquatic mesocosms simulating a pond ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Marie, Tella; Mélanie, Auffan; Lenka, Brousset; Julien, Issartel; Isabelle, Kieffer; Christine, Pailles; Elise, Morel; Catherine, Santaella; Bernard, Angeletti; Ester, Artells; Jérôme, Rose; Alain, Thiéry; Jean-Yves, Bottero

    2014-08-19

    Mesocosms are an invaluable tool for addressing the complex issue of exposure during nanoecotoxicological testing. This experimental strategy was used to take into account parameters as the interactions between the NPs and naturally occurring (in)organic colloids (heteroaggregation), or the flux between compartments of the ecosystems (aqueous phase, sediments, biota) when assessing the impacts of CeO2 NPs in aquatic ecosystems. In this study, we determine the transfer, redox transformation, and impacts of 1 mg L(-1) of bare and citrate coated CeO2-NPs toward an ecologically relevant organism (snail, Planorbarius corneus) exposed 4 weeks in a complex experimental system mimicking a pond ecosystem. Over time, CeO2-NPs tend to homo- and heteroaggregate and to accumulate on the surficial sediment. The kinetic of settling down was coating-dependent and related to the coating degradation. After 4 weeks, Ce was observed in the digestive gland of benthic organisms and associated with 65-80% of Ce(IV) reduction into Ce(III) for both bare and coated CeO2 NPs. A transitory oxidative stress was observed for bare CeO2-NPs. Coated-NPs exposed snails did not undergo any lipid peroxidation nor change in the antioxidant contents, while Ce content and reduction in the digestive gland were identical to bare CeO2-NPs. We hypothesized that the presence of citrate coating enhanced the defense capacity of the cells toward the oxidative stress induced by the CeO2 core.

  8. Managing aquatic ecosystems and water resources under multiple stress--an introduction to the MARS project.

    PubMed

    Hering, Daniel; Carvalho, Laurence; Argillier, Christine; Beklioglu, Meryem; Borja, Angel; Cardoso, Ana Cristina; Duel, Harm; Ferreira, Teresa; Globevnik, Lidija; Hanganu, Jenica; Hellsten, Seppo; Jeppesen, Erik; Kodeš, Vit; Solheim, Anne Lyche; Nõges, Tiina; Ormerod, Steve; Panagopoulos, Yiannis; Schmutz, Stefan; Venohr, Markus; Birk, Sebastian

    2015-01-15

    Water resources globally are affected by a complex mixture of stressors resulting from a range of drivers, including urban and agricultural land use, hydropower generation and climate change. Understanding how stressors interfere and impact upon ecological status and ecosystem services is essential for developing effective River Basin Management Plans and shaping future environmental policy. This paper details the nature of these problems for Europe's water resources and the need to find solutions at a range of spatial scales. In terms of the latter, we describe the aims and approaches of the EU-funded project MARS (Managing Aquatic ecosystems and water Resources under multiple Stress) and the conceptual and analytical framework that it is adopting to provide this knowledge, understanding and tools needed to address multiple stressors. MARS is operating at three scales: At the water body scale, the mechanistic understanding of stressor interactions and their impact upon water resources, ecological status and ecosystem services will be examined through multi-factorial experiments and the analysis of long time-series. At the river basin scale, modelling and empirical approaches will be adopted to characterise relationships between multiple stressors and ecological responses, functions, services and water resources. The effects of future land use and mitigation scenarios in 16 European river basins will be assessed. At the European scale, large-scale spatial analysis will be carried out to identify the relationships amongst stress intensity, ecological status and service provision, with a special focus on large transboundary rivers, lakes and fish. The project will support managers and policy makers in the practical implementation of the Water Framework Directive (WFD), of related legislation and of the Blueprint to Safeguard Europe's Water Resources by advising the 3rd River Basin Management Planning cycle, the revision of the WFD and by developing new tools for

  9. Effects of water scarcity and chemical pollution in aquatic ecosystems: State of the art.

    PubMed

    Arenas-Sánchez, Alba; Rico, Andreu; Vighi, Marco

    2016-12-01

    Water scarcity is an expanding climate and human related condition, which drives and interacts with other stressors in freshwater ecosystems such as chemical pollution. In this study we provide an overview of the existing knowledge regarding the chemical fate, biological dynamics and the ecological risks of chemicals under water scarcity conditions. We evaluated a total of 15 studies dealing with the combined effects of chemicals and water scarcity under laboratory conditions and in the field. The results of these studies have been elaborated in order to evaluate additive, synergistic or antagonistic responses of the studied endpoints. As a general rule, it can be concluded that, in situations of water scarcity, the impacts of extreme water fluctuations are much more relevant than those of an additional chemical stressor. Nevertheless, the presence of chemical pollution may result in exacerbated ecological risks in some particular cases. We conclude that further investigations on this topic would take advantage on the focus on some specific issues. Experimental (laboratory and model ecosystem) studies should be performed on different biota groups and life stages (diapausing eggs, immature stages), with particular attention to those including traits relevant for the adaptation to water scarcity. More knowledge on species adaptations and recovery capacity is essential to predict community responses to multiple stressors and to assess the community vulnerability. Field studies should be performed at different scales, particularly in lotic systems, in order to integrate different functional dynamics of the river ecosystem. Combining field monitoring and experimental studies would be the best option to reach more conclusive, causal relationships on the effects of co-occurring stressors. Contribution of these studies to develop ecological models and scenarios is also suggested as an improvement for the prospective aquatic risk assessment of chemicals in (semi-)arid areas.

  10. Preservation of natural aquatic ecosystems by application of bottom coal ash based bioreactor for in situ treatment of anthropogenic effluents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anker, Y.; Nisnevitch, M.; Tal, M.; Cahan, R.; Michael, E.

    2012-12-01

    operating with initial horizontal flow and continuous vertical circulation through aeration apparatus. Along the flow path several different bio-modules are applied, the sequence consists of aerobic and anaerobic stages, as well as biomass preservation section and fine grain filtration. The pilot biofilter facility was built during the summer of 2009; the influent consisted of domestic wastewater (of the adjacent Ariel University dormitories) and also synthetic aquatic solutions equivalent to urban, industrial, and roads runoff effluents. The biofilter operation evaluation demonstrated significant decrease in pollution loads, including organic, salts and pathogens. The facility's efficiency reached approximately 90% reduction or more, allowing the release of treated runoff without limitation to natural fluvial ecosystems (according to the required regulations). The present stage in the project is implementation of the method and process by application of a full scale pilot facility at a joint between an anthropogenic drainage network, consisting of urban, industrial and motorway runoff collection systems and a typical natural Samaritan fluvial ecosystem. The purpose of the system is to treat these anthropogenic effluents prior to their release into the stream and by that to prevent the negative environmental above mentioned effects.

  11. A multi-stable isotope framework to understand eutrophication in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Gooddy, Daren C; Lapworth, Dan J; Bennett, Sarah A; Heaton, Tim H E; Williams, Peter J; Surridge, Ben W J

    2016-01-01

    Eutrophication is a globally significant challenge facing aquatic ecosystems, associated with human induced enrichment of these ecosystems with nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P). However, the limited availability of inherent labels for P and N has constrained understanding of the triggers for eutrophication in natural ecosystems and appropriate targeting of management responses. This paper proposes and evaluates a new multi-stable isotope framework that offers inherent labels to track biogeochemical reactions governing both P and N in natural ecosystems. The framework couples highly novel analysis of the oxygen isotope composition of phosphate (δ(18)OPO4) with dual isotope analysis of oxygen and N within nitrate (δ(15)NNO3, δ(18)ONO3) and with stable N isotope analysis in ammonium (δ(15)NNH4). The River Beult in England is used as an exemplar system for initial evaluation of this framework. Our data demonstrate the potential to use stable isotope labels to track the input and downstream fate of nutrients from point sources, on the basis of isotopic differentiation for both P and N between river water and waste water treatment work effluent (mean difference = +1.7‰ for δ(18)OPO4; +15.5‰ for δ(15)NNH4 (under high flow); +7.3‰ for δ(18)ONO3 and +4.4‰ for δ(15)NNO3). Stable isotope data reveal nutrient inputs to the river upstream of the waste water treatment works that are consistent with partially denitrified sewage or livestock sources of nitrate (δ(15)NNO3 range = +11.5 to +13.1‰) and with agricultural sources of phosphate (δ(18)OPO4 range = +16.6 to +19.0‰). The importance of abiotic and metabolic processes for the in-river fate of N and P are also explored through the stable isotope framework. Microbial uptake of ammonium to meet metabolic demand for N is suggested by substantial enrichment of δ(15)NNH4 (by 10.2‰ over a 100 m reach) under summer low flow conditions. Whilst the concentration of both nitrate and phosphate

  12. Assessing Sources of Stress to Aquatic Ecosystems: Using Biomarkers and Bioindicators to Characterize Exodure-Response Profiles of Anthropogenic Activities

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, S.M.

    1999-03-29

    Establishing causal relationships between sources of environmental stressors and aquatic ecosystem health if difficult because of the many biotic and abiotic factors which can influence or modify responses of biological systems to stress, the orders of magnitude involved in extrapolation over both spatial and temporal scales, and compensatory mechanisms such as density-dependent responses that operate in populations. To address the problem of establishing causality between stressors and effects on aquatic systems, a diagnostic approach, based on exposure-response profiles for various anthropogenic activities, was developed to help identify sources of stress responsible for effects on aquatic systems at ecological significant levels of biological organization (individual, population, community). To generate these exposure-effects profiles, biomarkers of exposure were plotted against bioindicators of corresponding effects for several major anthropogenic activities including petrochemical , pulp and paper, domestic sewage, mining operations, land-development activities, and agricultural activities. Biomarkers of exposure to environmental stressors varied depending on the type of anthropogenic activity involved. Bioindicator effects, however, including histopathological lesions, bioenergetic status, individual growth, reproductive impairment, and community-level responses were similar among many of the major anthropogenic activities. This approach is valuable to help identify and diagnose sources of stressors in environments impacted by multiple stressors. By identifying the types and sources of environmental stressors, aquatic ecosystems can be more effectively protected and managed to maintain acceptable levels of environmental quality and ecosystem fitness.

  13. Land use Controls on Water Quality and Aquatic Ecosystems in the Andean Amazon, Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waggoner, L. A.; McClain, M. E.

    2007-05-01

    Agro-pastoral systems are replacing many of the tropical forests in the world, and much of this deforestation occurs in watersheds where people's livelihoods rely directly on water and aquatic resources in local streams and rivers. We examined relationships between land use and aquatic ecosystems in 34 catchments exhibiting a gradient of land use disturbance and human settlement in the Andean Amazon of Peru. Our research objectives were to 1) classify and characterize watershed land use and physical properties using remotely sensed data, 2) characterize the physical, biological and chemical conditions of streams 3) examine relationships between land use and water quality parameters at 3 scales: watershed, riparian and reach habitat and 4) translate research findings into management strategies that minimize disturbance and maximize ecosystem services. Primary forest was the dominant cover (68%) across the catchments, and the remaining study area was composed of: mixed forest (11.5%), grassland (10.75%) cropland (9.17%) and bare rock (0.02%). Among watersheds, forest cover ranged from 14% to 100%, mixed forest ranged from 0% to 26%, grassland ranged from 0% to 45% and cropland ranged from 0% to 26%. Physical habitat index scores ranged from 12.80 (very impaired) to 29.50 (reference conditions). Although nitrogen, phosphorous, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), pH, electric conductivity, and dissolved oxygen (DO), varied across sites, total concentrations remained within acceptable levels. Simpson's diversity and Family Biotic Index (FBI) were calculated for macroinvertebrates collected at each site; Simpson's diversity ranged from 0.24 to 0.95 and FBI ranged from 1.97 (excellent) to 7.49 (fairly poor). Forest cover at the watershed scale was the best explanatory variable and was positively correlated with inorganic phosphate (0.50), DO (0.90) and Simpson's diversity (0.46) and negatively correlated with organic phosphate (- 0.64), DOC (-0.75), water temperature (-0

  14. Spatial variation of atmospheric nitrogen deposition and critical loads for aquatic ecosystems in the Greater Yellowstone Area.

    PubMed

    Nanus, L; McMurray, J A; Clow, D W; Saros, J E; Blett, T; Gurdak, J J

    2017-04-01

    Current and historic atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition has impacted aquatic ecosystems in the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA). Understanding the spatial variation in total atmospheric deposition (wet + dry) of N is needed to estimate air pollution deposition critical loads for sensitive aquatic ecosystems. This is particularly important for areas that have an increasing contribution of ammonia dry deposition to total N (TN), such as the GYA. High resolution geostatistical models and maps of TN deposition (wet + dry) were developed using a variety of techniques including ordinary kriging in a geographic information system, to evaluate spatial variability and identify areas of elevated loading of pollutants for the GYA. TN deposition estimates in the GYA range from <1.4 to 7.5 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) and show greater variability than wet inorganic N deposition. Critical loads of TN deposition (CLTNdep) for nutrient enrichment in aquatic ecosystems range from less than 1.5 ± 1.0 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) to over 4.0 ± 1.0 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) and variability is controlled by differences in basin characteristics. The lowest CLTNdep estimates occurred in high elevation basins within GYA Wilderness boundaries. TN deposition maps were used to identify critical load exceedances for aquatic ecosystems. Estimated CLTNdep exceedances for the GYA range from 17% to 48% depending on the surface water nitrate (NO3(-)) threshold. Based on a NO3(-) threshold of 1.0 μmol L(-1), TN deposition exceeds CLTNdep in approximately 30% of the GYA. These predictive models and maps can be used to help identify and protect sensitive ecosystems that may be impacted by excess atmospheric N deposition.

  15. Observations of tidal flux between a submersed aquatic plant stand and the adjacent channel in the Potomac River near Washington, D.C.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rybicki, N.B.; Jenter, H.L.; Carter, V.; Baltzer, R.A.; Turtora, M.

    1997-01-01

    Dye injection studies and direct velocity and water-level measurements were made in macrophyte stands and adjacent channels in order to observe the effects of the macrophyte stand on flow and mass exchange in the tidal Potomac River. During the summer, dense stands of submersed aquatic plants cover most shoals <2 m deep. Continuous summertime water-level records within a submersed aquatic plant stand and in the adjacent channel revealed time-varying gradients in water-surface elevation between the two areas. Water-level gradients are created by differing rates of tidal water-level change in vegetated and unvegetated areas. Results were consistent with the idea that on a rising tide the water was slower to enter a macrophyte stand, and on a falling tide it was slower to leave it. Differences in water elevation between the stand and the open channel generated components of velocity in the stand that were at right angles to the line of flow in the channel. Seasonal differences in flow speed and direction over the shoals indicate substantial differences in resistance to flow as a result of the vegetation.

  16. Transgenic Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) rice is safer to aquatic ecosystems than its non-transgenic counterpart.

    PubMed

    Li, Guangsheng; Wang, Yongmo; Liu, Biao; Zhang, Guoan

    2014-01-01

    Rice lines genetically modified with the crystal toxin genes from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) have experienced rapid development, with biosafety certificates for two Bt rice lines issued in 2009. There has still been no commercial release of these lines yet due to public concerns about human health and environmental risks. Some studies confirmed that Bt rice was as safe as conventional rice to non-target organisms when pesticides were not applied, however, pesticides are still required in Bt rice to control non-lepidopteran pests. In this study, we assessed the environmental effects of two Bt rice lines expressing either the cry1Ab/1Ac or cry2A genes, respectively, by using zooplanktons as indicator species under normal field management practices using pesticides when required. In the whole rice growing season, non-Bt rice was sprayed 5 times while Bt rice was sprayed 2 times, which ensured both rice achieved a normal yield. Field investigations showed that rice type (Bt and non-Bt) significantly influenced zooplankton abundance and diversity, which were up to 95% and 80% lower in non-Bt rice fields than Bt rice fields. Laboratory rearing showed that water from non-Bt rice fields was significantly less suitable for the survival and reproduction of Daphnia magna and Paramecium caudatum in comparison with water from Bt rice fields. Higher pesticide residues were detected in the water from non-Bt than Bt rice fields, accounting for the bad performance of zooplankton in non-Bt field water. Our results demonstrate that Bt rice is safer to aquatic ecosystems than non-Bt rice, and its commercialization will be beneficial for biodiversity restoration in rice-based ecosystems.

  17. Transgenic Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Rice Is Safer to Aquatic Ecosystems than Its Non-Transgenic Counterpart

    PubMed Central

    Li, Guangsheng; Wang, Yongmo; Liu, Biao; Zhang, Guoan

    2014-01-01

    Rice lines genetically modified with the crystal toxin genes from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) have experienced rapid development, with biosafety certificates for two Bt rice lines issued in 2009. There has still been no commercial release of these lines yet due to public concerns about human health and environmental risks. Some studies confirmed that Bt rice was as safe as conventional rice to non-target organisms when pesticides were not applied, however, pesticides are still required in Bt rice to control non-lepidopteran pests. In this study, we assessed the environmental effects of two Bt rice lines expressing either the cry1Ab/1Ac or cry2A genes, respectively, by using zooplanktons as indicator species under normal field management practices using pesticides when required. In the whole rice growing season, non-Bt rice was sprayed 5 times while Bt rice was sprayed 2 times, which ensured both rice achieved a normal yield. Field investigations showed that rice type (Bt and non-Bt) significantly influenced zooplankton abundance and diversity, which were up to 95% and 80% lower in non-Bt rice fields than Bt rice fields. Laboratory rearing showed that water from non-Bt rice fields was significantly less suitable for the survival and reproduction of Daphnia magna and Paramecium caudatum in comparison with water from Bt rice fields. Higher pesticide residues were detected in the water from non-Bt than Bt rice fields, accounting for the bad performance of zooplankton in non-Bt field water. Our results demonstrate that Bt rice is safer to aquatic ecosystems than non-Bt rice, and its commercialization will be beneficial for biodiversity restoration in rice-based ecosystems. PMID:25105299

  18. Structural and functional effects of herbicides on non-target organisms in aquatic ecosystems with an emphasis on atrazine

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fairchild, James; Kortekamp, Andreas

    2011-01-01

    Agricultural production accounts for approximately 90% of herbicide use in the U.S. (Kiely et al., 2004). Gianessi and Reigner (2007) indicated that herbicides are routinely used on more than 90% of the area designated for large commercial crops including corn, soybeans, cotton, sugar beets, peanuts, and rice. Increased farm mechanization, technological advancements in production of inexpensive sources of inorganic nitrogen fertilizer (e.g., anhydrous ammonia), and conversion of forest, grassland, and wetland habitats to cropland has led to a tremendous increase in global food production over the past half-century. Herbicides have augmented advances in large-scale agricultural systems and have largely replaced mechanical and hand-weeding control mechanisms (Gianessi and Reigner, 2007). The wide-spread use of herbicides in agriculture has resulted in frequent chemical detections in surface and groundwaters (Gilliom, 2007). The majority of herbicides used are highly water soluble and are therefore prone to runoff from terrestrial environments. In additon, spray drift and atmospheric deposition can contribute to herbicide contamination of aquatic environments. Lastly, selected herbicides are deliberately applied to aquatic environments for controlling nuisance aquatic vegetation. Although aquatic herbicide exposure has been widely documented, these exposures are not necessarily related to adverse non-target ecological effects on natural communities in aquatic environments. This chapter evaluates the potential for effects of herbicides on the structure and function of aquatic envrionments at the population, community, and ecosystem levels of biological organization. In this manuscript I examine several critical aspects of the subject matter area: primary herbicides in use and chemical modes of action; the regulatory process used for registration and risk assessment of herbicides; data regarding non-target risks and the relative sensitivity of aquatic plants

  19. Phytoplankton chytridiomycosis: community structure and infectivity of fungal parasites in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rasconi, Serena; Niquil, Nathalie; Sime-Ngando, Télesphore

    2012-08-01

    Fungal parasitism is recurrent in plankton communities, especially in the form of parasitic chytrids. However, few attempts have been made to study the community structure and activity of parasites at the natural community level. To analyse the dynamics of zoosporic fungal parasites (i.e. chytrids) of phytoplankton, samples were collected from February to December 2007 in two freshwater lakes. Infective chytrids were omnipresent in lakes, with higher diversity of parasites and infected phytoplankton than in previous studies. The abundance and biomass of parasites were significantly higher in the productive Lake Aydat than in the oligomesotrophic Lake Pavin, while the infection prevalence in both lakes were similar and averaged about 20%. The host species composition and their size appeared as critical for chytrid infectivity, the larger hosts being more vulnerable, including pennate diatoms and desmids in both lakes. The highest prevalence (98%) was noted for the autumn bloom of the cyanobacterium Anabaena flosaquae facing the parasite Rhizosiphon crassum in Lake Aydat. Because parasites killed their hosts, this implies that cyanobacterial blooms, and other large size inedible phytoplankton blooms as well, may not totally represent trophic bottlenecks because their zoosporic parasites can release dissolved substrates for microbial processes through host destruction, and provide energetic particles as zoospores for grazers. Overall, we conclude that the parasitism by zoosporic fungi represents an important ecological driving force in the food web dynamics of aquatic ecosystems, and infer general empirical models on chytrid seasonality and trophodynamics in lakes.

  20. A methodology for assessing the impact of mutagens on aquatic ecosystems. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Knezovich, J.P.; Martinelli, R.E.

    1995-03-01

    Assessments of impacts of hazardous agents (i.e., chemical and physical mutagens) on human health have focused on defining the effects of chronic exposure on individuals, with cancer being the main effect of concern. In contrast, impacts on ecosystems have traditionally been gauged by the assessment of near-term organism mortality, which is clearly not a useful endpoint for assessing the long-term effects of chronic exposures. Impacts on individual organisms that affect the long-term survival of populations are much more important but are also more difficult to define. Therefore, methods that provide accurate measures of sub-lethal effects that are linked to population survival are required so that accurate assessments of environmental damage can be made and remediation efforts, if required, can be initiated. Radioactive substances have entered aquatic environments as a result of research and production activities, intentional disposal, and accidental discharges. At several DOE sites, surface waters and sediments are contaminated with radioactive and mutagenic materials. The accident at the Chernobyl power station in the former Soviet Union (FSU) has resulted in the contamination of biota present in the Kiev Reservoir. This documents presents a methodology which addresses the effects of a direct-acting mutagen (radiation) on aquantic organisms by applying sensitive techniques for assessing damage to genetic material.

  1. Impact of external forces on cyanophage-host interactions in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Jassim, Sabah A A; Limoges, Richard G

    2013-10-01

    Cyanobacterial (algal) blooms have by convention been attributed to the excessive level of nutrients from pollution and runoff, which promotes the rapid growth and multiplication of cyanobacteria or algae. The cyanophage (virus) is the natural predator of cyanobacteria (the host). The aim of this review is to unveil certain pressures that disrupt cyanophage-host interactions and the formation of cyanobacterial blooms. This review focuses principally on the impact of greenhouse gases, ozone depletion, solar ultraviolet radiation (SUR) and the role of recently discovered virophages, which coexist with and in turn are the natural predator of phages. The key findings are that the increase in SUR, the mutation of cyanophages and cyanobacteria, along with changing nutrient levels, have combined with virophages to impede cyanophage-host interactions and the resultant viral infection and killing of the cyanobacterial cell, which is a necessary step in controlling cyanobacterial blooms. Consider this a 'call to action' for researchers interested in corrective action aimed at evolving aquatic ecosystems.

  2. Mapping critical loads of nitrogen deposition for aquatic ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nanus, Leora; Clow, David W.; Saros, Jasmine E.; Stephens, Verlin C.; Campbell, Donald H.

    2012-01-01

    Spatially explicit estimates of critical loads of nitrogen (N) deposition (CLNdep) for nutrient enrichment in aquatic ecosystems were developed for the Rocky Mountains, USA, using a geostatistical approach. The lowest CLNdep estimates (−1 yr−1) occurred in high-elevation basins with steep slopes, sparse vegetation, and abundance of exposed bedrock and talus. These areas often correspond with areas of high N deposition (>3 kg N ha−1 yr−1), resulting in CLNdep exceedances ≥1.5 ± 1 kg N ha−1 yr−1. CLNdep and CLNdep exceedances exhibit substantial spatial variability related to basin characteristics and are highly sensitive to the NO3− threshold at which ecological effects are thought to occur. Based on an NO3− threshold of 0.5 μmol L−1, N deposition exceeds CLNdep in 21 ± 8% of the study area; thus, broad areas of the Rocky Mountains may be impacted by excess N deposition, with greatest impacts at high elevations.

  3. Mycological monitoring of selected aquatic ecosystems in the context of epidemiological hazards. Drinking water.

    PubMed

    Biedunkiewicz, Anna; Kowalska, Katarzyna; Schulz, Lukasz; Stojek, Kamila; Dynowska, Maria; Ejdys, Elżbieta; Sucharzewska, Ewa; Kubiak, Dariusz

    2014-01-01

    Many species of microfungi are reported in aquatic ecosystems with different frequency. Their number constantly fluctuates depending on the concentration of environmental and anthropogenic factors. Drinking water, tap and bottled, is essential for the proper functioning of the human body. It is also the main component of food and hence it should be safe for human health and free of contaminants. The mycological purity of tap water in two large cities in the region (Olsztyn and Ostrołęka) and a small village (Gągławki) as well as bottled, medium-mineralized and curative water stored under different conditions were tested. The laboratory investigations followed a pathway applied in diagnostic mycological laboratories. The conducted tests demonstrated that microfungi were found in tap water originating from the cities and in bottled water. The rural water supply system was free from contaminations. Eighteen species of microfungi were identified in tap water from Olsztyn and 9 species in tap water from Ostrołęka. In bottled water, 13 fungal species were detected. Exophiala spinifera and Debaryomyces hansenii were recorded in the water supply systems of both cities, while one common species, i.e. Aspergillus fumigatus, was identified in tap water fromOstrołęka and in bottled water. The conducted studies have significant practical implications, for instance in sanitary and epidemiological water evaluation and in medicine in the context of analysing the quality of drinking water in reference to health resorts and nosocomial infections.

  4. Assessment of the impact of chlorophyll derivatives to control parasites in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Erzinger, Gilmar Sidnei; Souza, Suellen Carolina; Pinto, Luciano Henrique; Hoppe, Roberto; Del Ciampo, Lineu Fernando; Souza, Ozair; Correia, Cláudia Hack Gumz; Häder, Donat-Peter

    2015-05-01

    Several research groups have studied new biopesticides which are less toxic to the environment and capable of controlling the vectors of parasitic diseases, especially in aquatic ecosystems. Pest control by photodynamic substances is an alternative to chemical or other measures, with chlorophyll and its derivatives as the most studied substances supported by their easy availability and low production costs. The impact of chlorophyll derivatives on four different species, a small crustacean (Daphnia similis), a unicellular alga (Euglena gracilis) and two species of fish (Astyanax bimaculatus and Cyprynus carpio) were tested under short-term conditions. In addition, the effects of long-term exposure were evaluated in D. similis and E. gracilis. In short-term tests, mortality of D. similis (EC50 = 7.75 mg/L) was most strongly affected by chlorophyllin, followed by E. gracilis (EC50 = 12.73 mg/L). The fish species showed a greater resistance documented by their EC50 values of 17.58 and 29.96 mg/L in C. carpio and A. bimaculatus, respectively. A risk quotient is calculated by dividing an estimate of exposure by an estimate of effect. It indicated that chlorophyll derivatives can be applied in nature to control the vectors of parasitic diseases under short-term conditions, but long-term exposure requires new formulations.

  5. Aquatic ecotoxicology: from the ecosystem to the cellular and molecular levels.

    PubMed

    Boudou, A; Ribeyre, F

    1997-02-01

    This review of aquatic ecotoxicology is presented in three parts. First, we discuss the fundamental concepts and stress the importance of its ecological basis and the complexity and diversity of the field of investigation, which result from actions and interactions between the physicochemical characteristics of the biotopes, the structural and functional properties of the living organisms, and the contamination modalities. Ecotoxicological mechanisms, regardless of the level of biological complexity, primarily depend on the bioavailability of the toxic products. Numerous processes control the chemical fate of contaminants in the water column and/or sediment compartments; accessibility to the biological barriers that separate the organisms from their surrounding medium depends directly on bioavailability. Second, we review the principal methodologies of the field, from in situ studies at the ecosystem/ecocomplex level to bioassays or single species tests. Third, we focus on mercury, selected as a reference contaminant, in order to illustrate the main ecotoxicological concepts, the complementarity between field and laboratory studies, and the indispensable multidisciplinarity of the approaches.

  6. Aquatic ecotoxicology: from the ecosystem to the cellular and molecular levels.

    PubMed Central

    Boudou, A; Ribeyre, F

    1997-01-01

    This review of aquatic ecotoxicology is presented in three parts. First, we discuss the fundamental concepts and stress the importance of its ecological basis and the complexity and diversity of the field of investigation, which result from actions and interactions between the physicochemical characteristics of the biotopes, the structural and functional properties of the living organisms, and the contamination modalities. Ecotoxicological mechanisms, regardless of the level of biological complexity, primarily depend on the bioavailability of the toxic products. Numerous processes control the chemical fate of contaminants in the water column and/or sediment compartments; accessibility to the biological barriers that separate the organisms from their surrounding medium depends directly on bioavailability. Second, we review the principal methodologies of the field, from in situ studies at the ecosystem/ecocomplex level to bioassays or single species tests. Third, we focus on mercury, selected as a reference contaminant, in order to illustrate the main ecotoxicological concepts, the complementarity between field and laboratory studies, and the indispensable multidisciplinarity of the approaches. PMID:9114275

  7. Scaling relationships among drivers of aquatic respiration from the smallest to the largest freshwater ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hall, Ed K; Schoolmaster, Donald; Amado, A.M; Stets, Edward G.; Lennon, J.T.; Domaine, L.; Cotner, J.B.

    2016-01-01

    To address how various environmental parameters control or constrain planktonic respiration (PR), we used geometric scaling relationships and established biological scaling laws to derive quantitative predictions for the relationships among key drivers of PR. We then used empirical measurements of PR and environmental (soluble reactive phosphate [SRP], carbon [DOC], chlorophyll a [Chl-a)], and temperature) and landscape parameters (lake area [LA] and watershed area [WA]) from a set of 44 lakes that varied in size and trophic status to test our hypotheses. We found that landscape-level processes affected PR through direct effects on DOC and temperature and indirectly via SRP. In accordance with predictions made from known relationships and scaling laws, scale coefficients (the parameter that describes the shape of a relationship between 2 variables) were found to be negative and have an absolute value 1, others <1). We also found evidence of a significant relationship between temperature and SRP. Because our dataset included measurements of respiration from small pond catchments to the largest body of freshwater on the planet, Lake Superior, these findings should be applicable to controls of PR for the great majority of temperate aquatic ecosystems.

  8. Ecological risk assessment of zinc from stormwater runoff to an aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Brix, Kevin V; Keithly, James; Santore, Robert C; DeForest, David K; Tobiason, Scott

    2010-03-15

    Zinc (Zn) risks from stormwater runoff to an aquatic ecosystem were studied. Monitoring data on waterborne, porewater, and sediment Zn concentrations collected at 20 stations throughout a stormwater collection/detention facility consisting of forested wetlands, a retention pond and first order stream were used to conduct the assessment. Bioavailability in the water column was estimated using biotic ligand models for invertebrates and fish while bioavailability in the sediment was assessed using acid volatile sulfide-simultaneously extracted metal (AVS-SEM). The screening level assessment indicated no significant risks were posed to benthic organisms from Zn concentrations in sediments and pore water. As would be expected for stormwater, Zn concentrations were temporally quite variable within a storm event, varying by factors of 2 to 4. Overall, probabilistic assessment indicated low (5-10% of species affected) to negligible risks in the system, especially at the discharge to the first order stream. Moderate to high risks (10-50% of species affected) were identified at sampling locations most upgradient in the collection system. The largest uncertainty with the assessment is associated with how best to estimate chronic exposure/risks from time-varying exposure concentrations. Further research on pulse exposure metal toxicity is clearly needed to assess stormwater impacts on the environment.

  9. Large Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Monitoring for Decision Makers: Monitoring to Target and Evaluate Success of Ecosystem Restoration

    EPA Science Inventory

    Monitoring ecosystem restoration at various scales in LAEs can be challenging, frustrating and rewarding. Some of the major ecosystem restoration monitoring occurring in LAEs include: seagrass expansion/contraction; dead zone sizes; oyster reefs; sea turtle nesting; toxic and nu...

  10. Complex trajectories of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem shifts caused by multiple human-induced environmental stresses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Long; Yu, Zicheng; Moeller, Robert E.; Bebout, Gray E.

    2008-09-01

    accumulation rates of OM, carbonate and silicate, and the δ 13C of OM and calcite all decreased significantly, corresponding to stabilization of the uplands. However, over the last 70 years, an intensifying aquatic stress from the deposition of 15N-enriched industrial pollutants has resulted in a steady increase of 1.9‰ in δ 15N. Proxy records for lake (δ 13C and δ 15N of OM) and upland conditions (pollen and silicates) at White Lake show complex trajectories of the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in response to past human disturbances.

  11. Floods, fish, and people: Connecting biogeochemical fluxes to aquatic ecosystem functions and people (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holtgrieve, G. W.; Arias, M. E.; Chheng, P.

    2013-12-01

    The Lower Mekong River basin, including Tonle Sap Lake (TSL), is the largest inland fishery in the world and a dominant source of protein and income for much of Southeast Asia. Maintaining ecosystem productivity in the face of large-scale environmental change from hydroelectric dams and climate change is critical for economic and social well-being in the region. Yet, we currently lack the most basic understanding of how hydrologic variation relates to fisheries production, nutritional quality, and ultimately livelihoods of people. We will describe past, present, and future research to establish mechanistic connections between the hydrology, ecology, and sustainability of the Mekong ecosystem. Past research includes application of a state-space oxygen mass balance model and continuous dissolved oxygen measurements from four locations to provide the first estimates of gross primary productivity (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (ER) for the Tonle Sap. GPP averaged 4.1 × 2.3 g O2 m-3 d-1 with minimal differences among sites, while ER averaged 24.9 × 20.0 g O2 m-3 d-1, but had greater than six-fold variation among sites. Using our measurements of GPP, we calibrated a hydrodynamic-productivity model and predicted aquatic net primary production of 2.0 × 0.2 g C m-2 d-1 (2.4 × 0.2 million tonnes C y-1). Present research is using stable isotope and fatty acid methyl ester biomarkers to investigate basal carbon sources to the fishery, focusing specifically on the role of biogenic methane oxidation in supporting the food web. Individuals a wide variety of taxa had tissue carbon isotope values (δ13C) ranging from -36 to -57 per mil. These extremely depleted values are best explained by utilization of biogenic methane by methane oxidizing bacteria (MOB) and subsequent grazing of these bacterial by benthic insects and ultimately fishes. The presence of MOB in the food web was confirmed by identifying 16:1ω8 and 18:1ω8 FAME biomarkers specific to these bacteria in fish

  12. Old river beds under urbanization pressure. Can we protect valuable aquatic ecosystems within the cities?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sikorska, Daria; Sikorski, Piotr

    2016-04-01

    Old river channels are valuable ecosystems in the scale of whole Europe. Protected as Natura 2000 habitats they are characterized by high biodiversity and provide various ecosystem services. River regulation, eutrophication or lack of annual flooding result in an impoverishment and disappearance of these habitats. Moreover they are subjected to severe pressure from uncontrolled expansion of the cities. The aim of this study was to determine factors associated with urbanization mostly contributing to impoverishment of the vegetation associated with the old channels and to identify landscape characteristics favouring high diversity and naturalness. We were seeking for indices that could be implemented in spatial management for preservation of these ecosystems. Vegetation inventory of 28 lakes, being former river Vistula beds near Warsaw was held. The lakes were located in an urban-rural gradient from the city centre, suburban zone to rural areas. Mapping of vegetation was performed for aquatic vegetation, rushes and vegetation of the shores (321 relevés). Human pressure was assessed on the basis of landscape composition of the lakes neighbourhood, characteristic features of the reservoir and water physio-chemical properties. High diversity and naturalness of the vegetation associated with former Vistula River beds was proved. Effects of the human pressure in the vegetation composition were recognized in high share of alien species and impoverishment of native plants. Composition was dependant on the intensity of human pressure in the neighbourhood and was mostly related to percentage of built-up areas and road density. Selected measures allowed to explain not more than 30% of plants composition variation which implies strong effect of local factors. Vegetation composition of former river beds changed significantly along urban-rural gradient, though the trend could be noted only to the city border. Several protection activities were proposed favouring high

  13. Springs as Model Systems for Aquatic Ecosystems Ecology: Stoichiometry, Metabolism and Nutrient Limitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, M. J.; Nifong, R. L.; Kurz, M. J.; Martin, J. B.; Cropper, W. P.; Korhnak, L. V.

    2013-12-01

    Springs have been called nature's chemostats, where low variation in discharge, temperature and chemistry creates a natural laboratory in which to address basic questions about aquatic ecosystems. Ecological stoichiometry posits that patterns of metabolism, trophic energy transfer and community structure arise in response to coupled elemental cycles. In this work we synthesize several recent studies in Florida's iconic springs to explore the overarching hypothesis that stoichiometry can be used to indicate the nutrient limitation status of autotrophs and ecosystem metabolism. Of foremost importance is that the chemically stable conditions observed in springs ensures that autotroph tissue elemental composition, which is thought to vary with environmental supply, is near steady state. Moreover, the elemental ratios of discharging water vary dramatically across our study springs (for example, molar N:P ranges from 0.4:1 to 400:1), subjecting the communities of autotrophs, which are largely conserved across systems, to dramatically different nutrient supply. At the scale of whole ecosystem metabolism, we show that C:N:P ratios are strongly conserved across a wide gradient of environmental supplies, counter to the prediction of stoichiometric plasticity. Moreover, the absence of a relationship between gross primary production and nutrient concentrations or stoichiometry suggests that metabolic homeostasis may be a diagnostic symptom of nutrient saturation. At the scale of individual autotrophs, both submerged vascular plants and filamentous algae, this finding is strongly reinforced, with remarkable within-species tissue C:N:P homeostasis over large gradients, and no statistically significant evidence that gradients in nutrient supply affect autotroph composition. Expanding the suite of elements for which contemporaneous environment and tissue measurements are available to include 19 metals and micronutrients revealed that, while plants were homeostatic across large N

  14. The interactive effects of excess reactive nitrogen and climate change on aquatic ecosystems and water resources of the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baron, J.S.; Hall, E.K.; Nolan, B.T.; Finlay, J.C.; Bernhardt, E.S.; Harrison, J.A.; Chan, F.; Boyer, E.W.

    2012-01-01

    Nearly all freshwaters and coastal zones of the US are degraded from inputs of excess reactive nitrogen (Nr), sources of which are runoff, atmospheric N deposition, and imported food and feed. Some major adverse effects include harmful algal blooms, hypoxia of fresh and coastal waters, ocean acidification, long-term harm to human health, and increased emissions of greenhouse gases. Nitrogen fluxes to coastal areas and emissions of nitrous oxide from waters have increased in response to N inputs. Denitrification and sedimentation of organic N to sediments are important processes that divert N from downstream transport. Aquatic ecosystems are particularly important denitrification hotspots. Carbon storage in sediments is enhanced by Nr, but whether carbon is permanently buried is unknown. The effect of climate change on N transport and processing in fresh and coastal waters will be felt most strongly through changes to the hydrologic cycle, whereas N loading is mostly climate-independent. Alterations in precipitation amount and dynamics will alter runoff, thereby influencing both rates of Nr inputs to aquatic ecosystems and groundwater and the water residence times that affect Nr removal within aquatic systems. Both infrastructure and climate change alter the landscape connectivity and hydrologic residence time that are essential to denitrification. While Nr inputs to and removal rates from aquatic systems are influenced by climate and management, reduction of N inputs from their source will be the most effective means to prevent or to minimize environmental and economic impacts of excess Nr to the nation’s water resources.

  15. Hydrologic Connectivity as a Window into Pattern Conditions and Formation Processes in Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larsen, L. G.; Choi, J.; Nungesser, M. K.; Harvey, J. W.

    2011-12-01

    Patterned aquatic ecosystems exhibit different types and degrees of hydrologic connectivity, from isolated open-water patches in some inland marshes, to cross-slope strings and flarks of striped fens, to along-slope ridges and sloughs of low-gradient subtropical wetlands, to dendritic channels of coastal marshes. The nature and degree of this connectivity are closely linked to landscape function. For example, hydrologic connectivity perpendicular to river channel thalwegs relates to the exchange of sediment and nutrients between channels and floodplains, whereas connectivity parallel to a dominant flow direction affects fish migration or the likelihood of contaminant transport. Characteristics of hydrologic connectivity reflect not only the results of landscape pattern but also the mechanisms responsible for pattern creation. Quantifying those connectivity characteristics provides a robust means to identify landscapes likely formed under a consistent set of processes or to compare the output of landscape simulation models to actual landscapes in order to determine whether the models capture the most relevant landscape formation processes. However, established methods for quantifying isotropic patch connectivity are often ill suited for strongly patterned landscapes or hydroscapes in which directional flow is important. Using graph theory principles, we developed two alternative indices of directional hydrologic connectivity: the maximum flow index (MFI) and directional connectivity index (DCI), which quantify the connectivity of flow paths along a particular axis of interest. The MFI is sensitive to the existence of any hydrologic connection along the direction of interest, whereas the DCI is sensitive to the linearity of connections along that direction. Curves of directional connectivity over a range of angular bearings provide a quantitative, information-dense representation of landscape structure that can be related to subtle differences in the physical

  16. Using Remotely Sensed Data and Watershed and Hydrodynamic Models to Evaluate the Effects of Land Cover Land Use Change on Aquatic Ecosystems in Mobile Bay, AL

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Al-Hamdan, Mohammad; Estes, Maurice G., Jr.; Judd, Chaeli; Woodruff, Dana; Ellis, Jean; Quattrochi, Dale; Watson, Brian; Rodriquez, Hugo; Johnson, Hoyt

    2012-01-01

    Alabama coastal systems have been subjected to increasing pressure from a variety of activities including urban and rural development, shoreline modifications, industrial activities, and dredging of shipping and navigation channels. The impacts on coastal ecosystems are often observed through the use of indicator species. One such indicator species for aquatic ecosystem health is submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV). Watershed and hydrodynamic modeling has been performed to evaluate the impact of land cover land use (LCLU) change in the two counties surrounding Mobile Bay (Mobile and Baldwin) on SAV stressors and controlling factors (temperature, salinity, and sediment) in the Mobile Bay estuary. Watershed modeling using the Loading Simulation Package in C++ (LSPC) was performed for all watersheds contiguous to Mobile Bay for LCLU scenarios in 1948, 1992, 2001, and 2030. Remotely sensed Landsat-derived National Land Cover Data (NLCD) were used in the 1992 and 2001 simulations after having been reclassified to a common classification scheme. The Prescott Spatial Growth Model was used to project the 2030 LCLU scenario based on current trends. The LSPC model simulations provided output on changes in flow, temperature, and sediment for 22 discharge points into the estuary. These results were inputted in the Environmental Fluid Dynamics Computer Code (EFDC) hydrodynamic model to generate data on changes in temperature, salinity, and sediment on a grid throughout Mobile Bay and adjacent estuaries. The changes in the aquatic ecosystem were used to perform an ecological analysis to evaluate the impact on SAV habitat suitability. This is the key product benefiting the Mobile Bay coastal environmental managers that integrates the influences of temperature, salinity, and sediment due to LCLU driven flow changes with the restoration potential of SAVs. Data products and results are being integrated into NOAA s EcoWatch and Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas online systems for

  17. Effect of pesticides used in banana and pineapple plantations on aquatic ecosystems in Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Diepens, Noël J; Pfennig, Sascha; Van den Brink, Paul J; Gunnarsson, Jonas S; Ruepert, Clemens; Castillo, Luisa E

    2014-01-01

    Current knowledge on fate and effect of agricultural pesticides comes is mainly from temperate ecosystems. More studies are needed in tropical systems in order to assess contamination risks to nontarget endemic tropical species from the extensive use of pesticides e.g. in banana and pineapple plantations. In this study, acute laboratory toxicity tests with organophosphate pesticides ethoprophos and chlorpyrifos were conducted on two Costa Rican species, cladoceran Daphnia ambigua and fish Parachromis dovii. Tests showed that chlorpyrifos was more toxic than ethoprophos to D. ambigua and P. dovii and that D. ambigua was also more sensitive than P. dovii to both pesticides. Additionally, bioassays were performed by exposing D. magna and P. dovii to contaminated water collected from the field. Chemical analyses of field water revealed that fungicides were generally the most frequent pesticide group found, followed by insecticides/nematicides and herbicides. The bioassays and values obtained from the literature confirmed that D. magna was more sensitive to pesticide contamination than P. dovii and that D. ambigua was more sensitive than D. magna, suggesting that the native cladoceran is a more suitable test species than its temperate counterpart. Species sensitivity distributions showed no significant difference in sensitivity between tropical and temperate fish and the arthropod species exposed to chlorpyrifos in this study. Choline esterase activity (ChE) was measured in P. dovii in laboratory tests in order to assess the applicability of this biomarker. ChE inhibition in P. dovii was observed in the laboratory at levels below the LC10 of both ethoprophos and chlorpyrifos, confirming that ChE is an efficient biomarker of exposure. Both indigenous Costa Rican species used in this study were found to be suitable standard tropical test species. Further studies are needed to investigate how protective the safe environmental concentrations, derived from LC50 of native

  18. Ecotoxicological monitoring for the evaluation of environmental recovery of aquatic ecosystems using Poecilia reticulata

    SciTech Connect

    DaSilva, E.M.; Navarro, M.F.T.; Mota, M.F.; Chastinet, C.B.A.

    1995-12-31

    Groundwater contamination has led to a considerable environmental impact on the humic acid-rich lake systems of Jaua and Interiagos (Camagari-BA). This was caused by the seepage of rainwater through a dune, which was used for some time as a dumping ground of a titanium dioxide plant. The pH fall in the water has conducted to a precipitation of the humic acids and the disappearance of the local fish fauna. The plant (TIBRAS S/A) initiated a recovery program in 1992 to seal up the contaminated dune, thus avoiding further contamination of the groundwater. During the last two years, ecotoxicity tests have been carried out with lake water, employing young individual of the guppy (Poecilia reticulate), an endemic species, as a test organism. Results for 1993 indicated and confined the contamination of five water stations from a total of eight sampled nearby. The LT{sub 50} were in some cases lower than 60 min. In the end of 1993, a severe drought caused the total disappearance of the surface water in the whole aquatic ecosystem. In May 1994, the testing series restarted and some considerable changes have been detected: the return of the water color for the whole system, an increase in pH and a considerable decrease of toxicity in two other stations. LT{sub 50} values for five stations were above 96 hours. These results are not yet an indicative that the dune sealing has been carried out properly, but are able to show and follow improvements in the biological quality of water bodies.

  19. Biogeochemistry of the Amazon River Basin: the role of aquatic ecosystems in the Amazon functioning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Victoria, R. L.; Ballester, V. R.; Krushe, A. V.; Richey, J. E.; Aufdenkampe, A. K.; Kavaguishi, N. L.; Gomes, B. M.; Victoria, D. D.; Montebello, A. A.; Niell, C.; Deegan, L.

    2004-12-01

    In this study we present the results of an integrated analysis of physical and anthropogenic controls of river biogeochemistry in Amazônia. At the meso-scale level, our results show that both soil properties and land use are the main drivers of river biogeochemistry and metabolism, with pasture cover and soil exchange cation capacity explaining 99% (p < 0.01) of the variability observed in surface water ions and nutrients concentrations. In small rivers, forest clearing can increase cations, P and C inputs. P and light are the main PPL limiting factors in forested streams, while in pasture streams N becomes limiting. P export to streams may increase or remain nearly undetectable after forest-to-pasture conversion, depending on soil type. Pasture streams on Oxisols have very low P export, while on Ultisols P export is increased. Conversions of forest to pasture leads to extensive growth of in channel Paspalum resulting in higher DOC concentrations and respiration rates. Pasture streams have higher DOC fluxes when compared to the forest ones. In pasture areas the soil are compacted, there is less infiltration and higher surface run off, leaching soil superficial layers and caring more DOC to the streams. In forest areas infiltration is deeper into the soils and canopy interaction is higher. Mineralogy and soil properties are key factors determining exports of nutrients to streams. Therefore, land use change effects on nutrient export from terrestrial to aquatic ecosystems and the atmosphere must be understood within the context of varying soil properties across the Amazon Basin.

  20. Quantification and Composition Analysis of Small Mobile Colloids from Different Aquatic Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Jing; Lazouskaya, Volha; Jin, Yan

    2014-05-01

    Natural colloids, often defined as entities with sizes < 1.0 μm, have attracted much attention due to their small size and large surface area, leading to their high reactivity with and ability to facilitate the transport of contaminants in the subsurface environment. However, the role of mobile colloids in carbon and phosphorus cycling is largely unknown, especially on the role of smaller colloids (< 0.45 μm), which are operationally considered as "dissolved" species in most studies. Our special focus is on smaller colloids in different size fractions. Colloids are sampled from different aquatic ecosystems, such as freshwater, wetland and estuary area, and include soil solution, stream water and groundwater samples. Colloids of various size fractions are separated using centrifugation or membrane filters and quantified gravimetrically and characterized using SEM or TEM with XEDs to analyze the morphology and compositions of colloidal organo-mineral associations. Preliminary results based on stream water at base flow, during storm event and wetland soil water showed that, in general, small natural colloids (0.1 - 0.45 µm or 0.2 - 0.4 µm) contribute significantly to the whole colloidal pools (< 0.7 or 1.2 µm), and even dominant in some samples and play an important role in carbon and phosphorus mobilization. However, colloid concentrations varied with many factors such as stream order, precipitation time and intensity, and redox conditions. In this presentation, we will present results on quantification and characterization of mobile colloids from field samples and factors that control their mobilization and stabilization, and their role in carbon and phosphorus fate and transport.

  1. Advances in management and utilization of invasive water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) in aquatic ecosystems - a review.

    PubMed

    Yan, Shao-Hua; Song, Wei; Guo, Jun-Yao

    2017-03-01

    The objective of this review is to provide a concise summary of literature in the Chinese language since late 1970s and focuses on recent development in global scenarios. This work will replenish the FAO summary of water hyacinth utilization from 1917 to 1979 and review ecological and socioeconomic impacts of the water hyacinth from 1980 to 2010. This review also discusses the debate on whether the growth of the water hyacinth is a problem, a challenge or an opportunity. Literature suggested that integrated technologies and good management may be an effective solution and the perception of water hyacinth could change from that of a notorious aquatic weed to a valuable resource, including its utilization as a biological agent for the application in bioremediation for removing excess nutrients from eutrophic water bodies at low cost. Key aspects on system integration and innovation may focus on low-cost and efficient equipment and the creation of value-added goods from water hyacinth biomass. In the socioeconomic and ecological domain of global development, all the successful and sustainable management inputs for the water hyacinth must generate some sort of social and economic benefit simultaneously, as well as benefiting the ecosystem. Potential challenges exist in linkages between the management of water hyacinth on the large scale to the sustainable development of agriculture based on recycling nutrients, bio-energy production or silage and feed production. Further research and development may focus on more detailed biology of water hyacinth related with its utilization, cost-benefit analysis of middle to large-scale application of the technologies and innovation of the equipment used for harvesting and dehydrating the plant.

  2. Transport and fate of radionuclides in aquatic environments--the use of ecosystem modelling for exposure assessments of nuclear facilities.

    PubMed

    Kumblad, L; Kautsky, U; Naeslund, B

    2006-01-01

    In safety assessments of nuclear facilities, a wide range of radioactive isotopes and their potential hazard to a large assortment of organisms and ecosystem types over long time scales need to be considered. Models used for these purposes have typically employed approaches based on generic reference organisms, stylised environments and transfer functions for biological uptake exclusively based on bioconcentration factors (BCFs). These models are of non-mechanistic nature and involve no understanding of uptake and transport processes in the environment, which is a severe limitation when assessing real ecosystems. In this paper, ecosystem models are suggested as a method to include site-specific data and to facilitate the modelling of dynamic systems. An aquatic ecosystem model for the environmental transport of radionuclides is presented and discussed. With this model, driven and constrained by site-specific carbon dynamics and three radionuclide specific mechanisms: (i) radionuclide uptake by plants, (ii) excretion by animals, and (iii) adsorption to organic surfaces, it was possible to estimate the radionuclide concentrations in all components of the modelled ecosystem with only two radionuclide specific input parameters (BCF for plants and Kd). The importance of radionuclide specific mechanisms for the exposure to organisms was examined, and probabilistic and sensitivity analyses to assess the uncertainties related to ecosystem input parameters were performed. Verification of the model suggests that this model produces analogous results to empirically derived data for more than 20 different radionuclides.

  3. Propagation and Establishment of Native Plants for Vegetative Restoration of Aquatic Ecosystems

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-06-01

    Vicksburg, MS: U S Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station. Lodge, D. M. 1991. Herbivory on freshwater macrophytes. Aquatic Botany 41:195–224. ERDC...on natural sediments. Aquatic Botany 21:251–263. Smart, R. M., J. W. Barko and D. G. McFarland. 1994. Competition between Hydrilla verticillata and

  4. Mycobacterium ulcerans dynamics in aquatic ecosystems are driven by a complex interplay of abiotic and biotic factors.

    PubMed

    Garchitorena, Andrés; Guégan, Jean-François; Léger, Lucas; Eyangoh, Sara; Marsollier, Laurent; Roche, Benjamin

    2015-07-28

    Host-parasite interactions are often embedded within complex host communities and can be influenced by a variety of environmental factors, such as seasonal variations in climate or abiotic conditions in water and soil, which confounds our understanding of the main drivers of many multi-host pathogens. Here, we take advantage of a combination of large environmental data sets on Mycobacterium ulcerans (MU), an environmentally persistent microorganism associated to freshwater ecosystems and present in a large variety of aquatic hosts, to characterize abiotic and biotic factors driving the dynamics of this pathogen in two regions of Cameroon. We find that MU dynamics are largely driven by seasonal climatic factors and certain physico-chemical conditions in stagnant and slow-flowing ecosystems, with an important role of pH as limiting factor. Furthermore, water conditions can modify the effect of abundance and diversity of aquatic organisms on MU dynamics, which suggests a different contribution of two MU transmission routes for aquatic hosts (trophic vs environmental transmission) depending on local abiotic factors.

  5. Effects of impervious cover on the surface water quality and aquatic ecosystem of the Kyeongan stream in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Bum-Yeon; Park, Shin-Jeong; Paule, Ma Cristina; Jun, Woosong; Lee, Chang-Hee

    2012-08-01

    The extent of impervious cover in a watershed has been linked to the quality of an urban aquatic environment. The Kyeongan watershed in South Korea was investigated to evaluate the relationship between the total impervious area (TIA) and the aquatic ecosystem of the watershed, including water quality and aquatic life using a relatively high-resolution (0.4 m) image. The TIA was found to be approximately 12% of the watershed, which indicates that the quality of its environment was being adversely affected by it. For water quality, Pearson correlation analyses showed that all water quality parameters studied were found to be positively correlated with TIA at p < 0.01, except for nitrate (NO3-). In addition, the zone with a higher TIA was found to have worse water quality. Some water quality parameters, such as nitrite (NO2-), total phosphorus, and phosphate (PO4(3-)) were highly affected by discharges from wastewater treatment plants. Water quality data suggest that TIA could be used to predict the water quality of streams. For ecological parameters, the diatom index for organic pollution and trophic diatom index were found to be highly correlated with TIA, whereas physical habitat and benthic macroinvertebrates were poorly correlated with TIA. However, the results indicate that the extent of impervious cover can be a useful indicator for predicting the status of specific ecosystem of streams.

  6. Think before you flush! A sustainable aquatic eco-system's relation to human health.

    PubMed

    McKeown, Elaine; Pawloski, Judith

    2012-12-18

    What we do every day at work and in our home lives can make a difference in the quality of our environment. Consider, for example, the flushing of pharmaceuticals into the sewer system can lead to water pollution resulting in a threat to aquatic and human life. In contrast, keeping aquatic life healthy may contribute to human health. Some aquatic-based medications are currently on the market. Others are in various stages of development. In this article the authors argue that, for the benefit of both human and marine life, it is time to implement safer disposal methods for unwanted medications. The authors begin by sharing nursing's guiding principles for environmental health; after which they review research related to pharmaceutical pollution of water resources; describe health care treatments derived from marine life; and discuss suggestions for promoting aquatic health. They conclude that by taking care to preserve aquatic life, we contribute to the quality of our own human lives.

  7. Toxicological effects of pyrethroids on non-target aquatic insects.

    PubMed

    Antwi, Frank B; Reddy, Gadi V P

    2015-11-01

    The toxicological effects of pyrethroids on non-target aquatic insects are mediated by several modes of entry of pyrethroids into aquatic ecosystems, as well as the toxicological characteristics of particular pyrethroids under field conditions. Toxicokinetics, movement across the integument of aquatic insects, and the toxicodynamics of pyrethroids are discussed, and their physiological, symptomatic and ecological effects evaluated. The relationship between pyrethroid toxicity and insecticide uptake is not fully defined. Based on laboratory and field data, it is likely that the susceptibility of aquatic insects (vector and non-vector) is related to biochemical and physiological constraints associated with life in aquatic ecosystems. Understanding factors that influence aquatic insects susceptibility to pyrethroids is critical for the effective and safe use of these compounds in areas adjacent to aquatic environments.

  8. Managing riverine landscapes as meta-ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tockner, K.

    2014-12-01

    Aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems are tightly linked through energy, material, information, and organism flows. At the landscape scale, these reciprocal flows are controlled by the composition, configuration, boundary conditions and linkage of individual ecosystem types, thereby forming so-called meta-ecosystems. The relative importance of individual ecosystem types depends on the intrinsic properties (so-called "ecosystem traits"), the setting within the landscape, and the characteristics of interfaces that control cross-system fluxes. For example, the juxtaposition of particular ecosystem types (i.e. their composition and configuration) may alter the magnitude of landscape processes as well as the directions of flow among ecosystem types. Therefore, the meta-ecosystem concept provides a framework to quantify ecosystem diversity, a neglected component of biodiversity, and to test its effects on genetic and species diversity as well as the functional performance in coupled ecosystems. Given their topographic position at the lowest point in the landscape, aquatic ecosystems are particularly susceptible to influences exerted by their surrounding terrestrial environment, both the immediately adjacent riparian zones and the entire catchment that they drain. Questions that need to be tackled may include: What are the consequences of exchange pulses between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems on the functional performance of individual ecosystems? What are the mechanisms and processes underlying structural and functional biodiversity at aquatic-terrestrial interfaces? In this respect, the meta-ecosystem concept might be very helpful in landscape management and in ecosystem design and engineering.

  9. The Life Cycle of Mercury Within the Clear Lake Aquatic Ecosystem: From Ore to Organism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suchanek, T. H.; Suchanek, T. H.; Nelson, D. C.; Nelson, D. C.; Zierenberg, R. A.; King, P.; King, P.; McElroy, K.; McElroy, K.

    2001-12-01

    Clear Lake (Lake County) is located in the geologically active Clear Lake volcanics mercury (Hg) bearing Franciscan formation within the Coast Range of California, which includes over 300 abandoned Hg mines and prospects. Intermittent mining at the Sulphur Bank Mercury Mine (from 1872-1957), now a USEPA SuperFund site, has resulted in approximately 100 metric tonnes of Hg being deposited into the aquatic ecosystem of Clear Lake, with sediment concentrations of total-Hg as high as 650 mg/kg (parts per million = ppm) near the mine, making Clear Lake one of the most Hg contaminated lakes in the world. As a result, largemouth bass and other top predatory fish species often exceed both the Federal USFDA recommended maximum recommended concentrations of 1.0 ppm and the State of California level of 0.5 ppm. Acid rock drainage leaches Hg and high concentrations of sulfate from the mine site through wasterock and subsurface conduits through subsediment advection and eventually upward diffusion into lake sediments and water. When mineral-laden pH 3 fluids from the mine mix with Clear Lake water (pH 8), an alumino-silicate precipitate (floc) is produced that promotes the localized production of toxic methyl Hg. Floc "hot spots" in sediments near the mine exhibit low pH, high sulfate, anoxia and high organic loading which create conditions that promote Hg methylation by microbial activity, especially in late summer and fall. Wind-driven currents transport methyl-Hg laden floc particles throughout Clear Lake, where they are consumed by plankton and benthic invertebrates and bioaccumulated throughout the food web. While Clear Lake biota have elevated concentrations of methyl-Hg, they are not as elevated as might be expected based on the total Hg loading into the lake. A science-based management approach, utilizing over 10 years of data collected on Hg cycling within the physical and biological compartments of Clear Lake, is necessary to affect a sensible remediation plan.

  10. Placement of buffer strips to protect aquatic ecosystems - do we need to go outside?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hösl, Rosemarie; Strauss, Peter

    2010-05-01

    In intensively agriculturally used regions, surface runoff often contains sediments, pollutants and nutrients which may badly influence the stream water quality. One possibility to reduce nutrient and sediment input into surface waters is by installing buffer strips which are supposed to retain these pollutants. In Austria, buffer strips obtain funding within the Austrian agri-environmental programme (ÖPUL) when placed alongside permanent streams. However, flow convergence may take place in ditches or channels long before approaching the river system. Under these circumstances, buffer strips may not contribute effectively to reduce pollutant input. To assess the dimension of such a scenario we carried out a detailed field survey in the Weinviertel area of Lower Austria, a region which is known to be highly affected by soil erosion and pollutant input into aquatic ecosystems. Ditches, channels and comparable linear structures known to concentrate convergent flow paths were mapped in five small subcatchments (size between 1 and 4 km2) of the Weinviertel region. Surface flow paths were modelled either automatically or by integrating these linear structures. The critical catchment areas which drained unprotected into the streams were identified for both cases. Automatic calculation of surface flow paths was not able to identify critical unprotected areas compared to integrating the mapped linear structures which were obtained by field inspection. In three out of five subcatchments such critical areas were found. The size of these unprotected areas within the test subcatchments varied between 10 and 40% of the total area. We also tested the impact of grid resolution and the implementation of different runoff algorithms. Three different DEM's (resolution 10m by aerial photograph evaluation, 1m by laserscan and 10m generated from 1m laserscan) and two different runoff algorithms were used for both the automatic and the mapped convergent flow situation. Application of a D

  11. A National Pilot Study of Mercury Contamination of Aquatic Ecosystems Along Multiple Gradients: Bioaccumulation in Fish

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brumbaugh, William G.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Helsel, Dennis R.; Wiener, James G.; Echols, Kathy R.

    2001-01-01

    Water, sediment, and fish were sampled in the summer and fall of 1998 at 106 sites from 20 U.S. watershed basins to examine relations of mercury (Hg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in aquatic ecosystems. Bioaccumulation of Hg in fish from these basins was evaluated in relation to species, Hg and MeHg in surficial sediment and water, and watershed characteristics. Bioaccumulation was strongly (positively) correlated with MeHg in water (r = 0.63, p < 0.001) but only moderately with the MeHg in sediment (r = 0.33, p < 0.001) or total Hg in water (r = 0.28, p < 0.01). Of the other significantly measured parameters, pH, DOC, sulfate, sediment LOI, and the percent wetlands of each basin were also significantly correlated with Hg bioaccumulation in fish. The best model for predicting Hg bioaccumulation included Me Hg in water, PH of the water, % wetlands in the basin, and the AVS content of the sediment. These four variables accounted for 45% of the variability of the fish fillet Hg concentration normalized (divided) by total length; however, the majority was described by MeHg in water. A MeHg water concentration 0.12 ng/L was on average, associated with a fish fillet Hg concentration of 0.3 mg/kg wet weight for an age-3 fish when all species were considered. For age-3 largemouth bass, a MeHg water concentration of 0.058 ng/L was associated with the 0.3 mg/kg fillet concentration. Based on rankings for Hg in sediment, water, and fish, sampling sites from the following five study basins had the greatest Hg contamination: Nevada Basin and Range, South Florida Basin, Sacramento River Basin (California), Santee River Basin and Caostal Drainages (South Carolina), and the Long Island and New Jersey Coastal DRainags. A sampling and analysis strategy based on this pilot study is planned for all USGS/NAWQA study units over the next decade.

  12. Interactions of carbon nanotubes with aqueous/aquatic media containing organic/inorganic contaminants and selected organisms of aquatic ecosystems--A review.

    PubMed

    Boncel, Sławomir; Kyzioł-Komosińska, Joanna; Krzyżewska, Iwona; Czupioł, Justyna

    2015-10-01

    Due to their unique molecular architecture translating into numerous every-day applications, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) will be ultimately an increasingly significant environmental contaminant. This work reviews qualitative/quantitative analyses of interactions of various types of CNTs and their chemically modified analogues with aqueous/aquatic media containing organic and inorganic contaminants and selected organisms of aquatic ecosystems. A special emphasis was placed on physicochemical interactions between CNTs as adsorbents of heavy metal cations and aromatic compounds (dyes) with its environmental consequences. The studies revealed CNTs as more powerful adsorbents of aromatic compounds (an order of magnitude higher adsorption capacity) than metal cations. Depending on the presence of natural organic matter (NOM) and/or co-contaminants, CNTs may act as Trojan horse while passing through biological membranes (in the absence of NOM coordinating metal ions). Nanotubes, depending on flow conditions and their morphology/surface chemistry, may travel with natural waters or sediment with immobilized PAHs or metals and/or increase cyto- and ecotoxicity of PAHs/metal ions by their release via competitive complexation, or cause synergic ecotoxicity while adsorbing nutrients. Additionally, toxicity of CNTs against exemplary aquatic microorganisms was reviewed. It was found for Daphnia magna that longer exposures to CNTs led to higher ecotoxicity with a prolonged CNTs excretion. SWCNTs were more toxic than MWCNTs, while hydrophilization of CNTs via oxidation or anchoring thereto polar/positively charged polymer chains enhanced stability of nanotubes dispersion in aqueous media. On the other hand, bioavailability of functionalized CNTs was improved leading to more complex both mechanisms of uptake and cytotoxic effects.

  13. Trace metal mobility and microbial community structure in tropical soils: examples from adjacent forest and grassland ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, A. D.; Roberts, J. A.; MacPherson, G. L.; Mauck, B. S.; Stallard, R. F.

    2004-12-01

    Many factors determine the quality and sustainability of a soil environment and changes in land use can impact significantly soil geochemistry and the associated soil microbial communities. Native tropical forests and human-constructed grasslands on Barro Colorado Island provide an excellent setting for comparing changes in soil ecosystems in undisturbed and altered landscapes. The goals of this study were to examine biological, chemical, and mineralogical changes in soil properties as a function of land use changes during the wet and dry seasons. Soil pits were excavated at two study sites, a tropical forest and an adjacent plot that has been converted to grassland, during March 2002 and August 2003. The 1 meter deep pits were sampled at 5 cm intervals and characterized for soil organic matter content, soil moisture, community structure and total lipid biomass of the soil microbial community, mineralogy, and trace metal distribution using a sequential extraction method. Results demonstrate that forested soils exhibit higher organic matter content than grassland soils regardless of soil moisture content. Total lipid biomass of the active soil microbial population decreases with depth in both soils, but is elevated in the forested soil, likely correlating with the organic matter content in this system. Diversity of the soil microbial community, determined by PLFA analysis, decreases sharply at the base of the root zone and general trends in community structure are similar in both soils. XRD analysis of the soils reveal that the weathering profile in the forest has extended to a greater depth, but these differences in the mineralogy profile do not exert significant control on trace element mobility. Vanadium, copper, zinc, and aluminum show strong affinities for the organically bound fraction in both soils.

  14. Aquatic ecosystem responses to Holocene climate change and biome development in boreal, central Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, Anson W.; Bezrukova, Elena V.; Leng, Melanie J.; Meaney, Miriam; Nunes, Ana; Piotrowska, Natalia; Self, Angela; Shchetnikov, Alexander; Shilland, Ewan; Tarasov, Pavel; Wang, Luo; White, Dustin

    2012-05-01

    were also significant, but considerably less important. The potential importance of climate and biome development (tundra, steppe, cold deciduous forest and taiga) on different trophic levels (i.e. chironomid and diatom communities) in lake ESM-1 was also assessed using RDA. Climate predictors had a more significant influence on Holocene chironomid assemblages, especially July insolation at 60 °N, estimates of regional precipitation and estimates of northern hemisphere temperature, while only the development of the taiga biome had a significant impact on these primary consumers. Diatom communities also had a small, but significant influence on Holocene chironomid populations, perhaps linked to variation in faunal feeding strategies. In contrast, climatic and biome predictors explained similar amounts of variation in the Holocene diatom assemblage (approximately 20% each), while chironomids themselves as predictors explained just under 7% of diatom variation. Lake acidity was inferred using a diatom inference model. Results suggest that after deglaciation, the lake did not undergo a process of gradual acidification, most likely due to the presence of continuous permafrost and low levels of precipitation, preventing base cations and dissolved organic carbon entering the lake (except for the period between 1.7 and 0.7 ka BP). We conclude that lakes in continental, boreal regions undergo different models of lake ontogeny than oceanic boreal regions. Unlike other regions discussed, climate is a more important driver of ecosystem change than catchment changes. We also demonstrate that the start of the period coincident with the onset of the Little Ice Age resulted in important thresholds crossed in catchment vegetation and aquatic communities.

  15. A METHODOLOGY FOR INFERRING THE CAUSES OF OBSERVED IMPAIRMENTS IN AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biological surveys have become a common technique for determining whether aquatic communities have been injured. However, their results are not useful for identifying management options until the causes of apparent injuries have been identified. Techniques for determining causa...

  16. Burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia) as indicators of aquatic ecosystem health at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Edsall, T.A.; Phillips, W.E.

    2004-01-01

    With concern running high for the ecological effects of nutrient introductions in waters near the park, researchers document baseline conditions of aquatic park resources, applying a method that can be fine-tuned for future trend monitoring.

  17. Relevance of risk predictions derived from a chronic species sensitivity distribution with cadmium to aquatic populations and ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mebane, C.A.

    2010-01-01

    Criteria to protect aquatic life are intended to protect diverse ecosystems, but in practice are usually developed from compilations of single-species toxicity tests using standard test organisms that were tested in laboratory environments. Species sensitivity distributions (SSDs) developed from these compilations are extrapolated to set aquatic ecosystem criteria. The protectiveness of the approach was critically reviewed with a chronic SSD for cadmium comprising 27 species within 21 genera. Within the data set, one genus had lower cadmium effects concentrations than the SSD fifth percentile-based criterion, so in theory this genus, the amphipod Hyalella, could be lost or at least allowed some level of harm by this criteria approach. However, population matrix modeling projected only slightly increased extinction risks for a temperate Hyalella population under scenarios similar to the SSD fifth percentile criterion. The criterion value was further compared to cadmium effects concentrations in ecosystem experiments and field studies. Generally, few adverse effects were inferred from ecosystem experiments at concentrations less than the SSD fifth percentile criterion. Exceptions were behavioral impairments in simplified food web studies. No adverse effects were apparent in field studies under conditions that seldom exceeded the criterion. At concentrations greater than the SSD fifth percentile, the magnitudes of adverse effects in the field studies were roughly proportional to the laboratory-based fraction of species with adverse effects in the SSD. Overall, the modeling and field validation comparisons of the chronic criterion values generally supported the relevance and protectiveness of the SSD fifth percentile approach with cadmium. ?? 2009 Society for Risk Analysis.

  18. WATER-ROCK INTERACTIONS INFLUENCING MERCURY FATE AND TRANSPORT FROM AN ABANDONED MINE SITE TO AN ADJACENT AQUATIC ECOSYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    Clear Lake, located 150 km north of San Francisco, is one of the largest fresh water lakes in California and is an important economic resource for the region. Elevated mercury levels in fish in Clear Lake were identified in the late 1970s, resulting in a fish consumption advisor...

  19. Wetland-stream ecosystems of the western Kentucky coalfield: environmental disturbance and the shaping of aquatic community structure

    SciTech Connect

    Hill, P.L. Jr.

    1983-01-01

    The effects of surface mining effluents of the shaping of aquatic community structure in wetland-stream ecosystems of the western Kentucky coalfield were examined. Three variously impacted drainage systems were utilized for the investigation of cause-and-effect relationships. Clear Creek wetland-stream ecosystem had a uniformly low pH, high conductivity and high dissolved minerals load linked to the oozing of old, unreclaimed surface mine spoils. Cypress Creek wetland-stream ecosystem exhibited a slug-pulsing of mine drainage effluents tied to active surface mining limited to the headwaters region. Henderson Sloughs-Pond Creek wetland-stream ecosystem had no mining impact and was utilized as a comparison site. Macroinvertebrate taxa and diversity were considerably lowered in the systems receiving mine drainage. The Shannon-Weaver diversity index (H) was 0.61 for Clear Creek, 1.80 for Cypress Creek and 2.01 for Henderson Sloughs. Large numbers of chironomid larvae dominated the benthic community of Clear Creek while mayflies, caddisflies and crustaceans were the major components of the Cypress Creek community. Henderson Sloughs-Pond Creek had an even more diverse community of mayflies, caddisflies, crustaceans, molluscs and odonates. Fishes followed the same general trend, being almost absent in Clear Creek (H - 0.47), slightly depressed in Cypress Creek (H = 1.74) and generally diverse in Henderson Sloughs (H = 2.37).

  20. Optical properties of natural dissolved organic matter (DOM) in aquatic ecosystems: Applications in ecosystem studies from headwater streams to the deep ocean. (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaffe, R.

    2010-12-01

    The study of natural dissolved organic material (DOM) contributes to the better understanding of ecosystem function as the carbon flux between environmental compartments represents an important linkage between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Within freshwater and marine ecosystems, DOM typically represents the largest pool of detrital organic carbon and greatly exceeds the organic carbon present in living biomass. Thus, the sources and fate of DOM are important terms in carbon budgets. DOM can also influence ecosystem function by controlling microbial food webs, act as a means of nutrient transport, buffer pH and influence toxicity and bioavailability of pollutants, among others. DOM composition influences its ‘quality’ and thus its photo- and bio-reactivity, both of which exert a strong control of the diagenetic reworking of this carbon pool. However, the molecular composition of DOM is highly complex and diverse, and its characterization is a serious challenge to analytical chemists. In recent years, several novel analytical approaches to the characterization of DOM have evolved, including those that are highly structure specific and others that provide information on broader molecular characteristics. Whilst the former are usually expensive and time consuming, the latter, often based on optical properties measurements, feature high sample throughput at a reduced cost but at the expense of structural specificity. While both approaches are complementary under ideal conditions, the latter are best suited for studies involving large spatial and temporal scales. The analysis of DOM optical properties, in particular excitation emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence combined with parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC), has emerged as a practical tool for the broad characterization of DOM quality. This presentation will provide examples for the application of EEM-PARAFAC in assessing environmental dynamics of DOM on both spatial and temporal scales, and in both

  1. Testing the stress-gradient hypothesis with aquatic detritivorous invertebrates: insights for biodiversity-ecosystem functioning research.

    PubMed

    Fugère, V; Andino, P; Espinosa, R; Anthelme, F; Jacobsen, D; Dangles, O

    2012-11-01

    1. The stress-gradient hypothesis (SGH) states that environmental stress modulates species interactions, causing a shift from negative interactions to net positive interactions with increasing stress. 2. Potentially, this modulation of species interactions could in turn influence biodiversity-ecosystem function (B-EF) relationships along stress gradients. Although the SGH has been extensively discussed in plant community ecology in the past two decades, it has received little attention from animal ecologists. 3. To explore whether the SGH could be applied to animal communities, we conducted a litter decomposition experiment with aquatic detritivorous invertebrates in which we manipulated litter quality and measured species interactions along this resource quality gradient. Litter quality was manipulated by presenting detritivores with leaves of plant species varying in specific leaf area and decomposition rate in streams. 4. We found a switch from negative to neutral interactions with increasing resource quality stress, in line with the SGH. However, by re-examining other published results with aquatic detritivores from the perspective of the SGH, we found that a diversity of patterns seem to characterize detritivore interactions along stress gradients. 5. Although the basic pattern proposed by the SGH may not apply to animal systems in general, we show that aquatic detritivore interactions do change along stress gradients, which underlines the importance of incorporating environmental stressors more explicitly in B-EF research.

  2. Marcellus and mercury: Assessing potential impacts of unconventional natural gas extraction on aquatic ecosystems in northwestern Pennsylvania.

    PubMed

    Grant, Christopher J; Weimer, Alexander B; Marks, Nicole K; Perow, Elliott S; Oster, Jacob M; Brubaker, Kristen M; Trexler, Ryan V; Solomon, Caroline M; Lamendella, Regina

    2015-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a persistent element in the environment that has the ability to bioaccumulate and biomagnify up the food chain with potentially harmful effects on ecosystems and human health. Twenty-four streams remotely located in forested watersheds in northwestern PA containing naturally reproducing Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout), were targeted to gain a better understanding of how Marcellus shale natural gas exploration may be impacting water quality, aquatic biodiversity, and Hg bioaccumulation in aquatic ecosystems. During the summer of 2012, stream water, stream bed sediments, aquatic mosses, macroinvertebrates, crayfish, brook trout, and microbial samples were collected. All streams either had experienced hydraulic fracturing (fracked, n = 14) or not yet experienced hydraulic fracturing (non-fracked, n = 10) within their watersheds at the time of sampling. Analysis of watershed characteristics (GIS) for fracked vs non-fracked sites showed no significant differences (P > 0.05), justifying comparisons between groups. Results showed significantly higher dissolved total mercury (FTHg) in stream water (P = 0.007), lower pH (P = 0.033), and higher dissolved organic matter (P = 0.001) at fracked sites. Total mercury (THg) concentrations in crayfish (P = 0.01), macroinvertebrates (P = 0.089), and predatory macroinvertebrates (P = 0.039) were observed to be higher for fracked sites. A number of positive correlations between amount of well pads within a watershed and THg in crayfish (r = 0.76, P < 0.001), THg in predatory macroinvertebrates (r = 0.71, P < 0.001), and THg in brook trout (r = 0.52, P < 0.01) were observed. Stream-water microbial communities within the Deltaproteobacteria also shared a positive correlation with FTHg and to the number of well pads, while stream pH (r = -0.71, P < 0.001), fish biodiversity (r = -0.60, P = 0.02), and macroinvertebrate taxa richness (r = -0.60, P = 0.01) were negatively correlated with the number of well pads within a

  3. Exploring new Routes for Identifying Phosphorus Species in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems with 31P NMR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vestergren, Johan; Persson, Per; Sundman, Annelie; Ilstedt, Ulrik; Giesler, Reiner; Schleucher, Jürgen; Gröbner, Gerhard

    2014-05-01

    Phosphorus (P) is the primary growth-limiting nutrient in some of the world's biomes. Rock phosphate is a non-renewable resource and the major source of agricultural fertilizers. Predictions of P consumption indicate that rock phosphate mining may peak within 35 years, with severe impacts on worldwide food production1. Organic P compounds constitute a major fraction of soil P, but little is known about the dynamics and bioavailability of organic P species. Our aim is to develop new liquid and solid state 31P-NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) techniques to identify P-species in water and soils; information required for correlating P speciation with plant and soil processes2, and eventually to improve P use. Soil organic P is frequently extracted using NaOH/EDTA, followed by characterization of the extract by solution 31P-NMR. However, the obtained NMR spectra usually have poor resolution due to line broadening caused by the presence of paramagnetic ions. Therefore, we successfully developed an approach to avoid paramagnetic line broadening by precipitation of metal sulfides. Sulfide precipitation dramatically reduces NMR line widths for soil extracts, without affecting P-composition. The resulting highly improved resolution allowed us to apply for the first time 2D 1H,31P-NMR methods to identify different P monoesters in spectral regions which are extremely crowded in 1D NMR spectra.3 By exploiting 2D 1H-31P NMR spectra of soil extracts we were able to unambiguously identify individual organic P species by combining 31P and 1H chemical shifts and coupling constants. This approach is even suitable for a structural characterization of unknown P-components and for tracing degradation pathways between diesters and monoesters3,4.Currently we apply our approach on boreal4 and tropical soils with focus on Burkina Faso. In addition we also monitor P-species in aqueos ecosystems. For this purpose stream water from the Krycklan catchment in northern Sweden5 has been used to

  4. From a microcosm to the catchment scale: studying the fate of organic runoff pollutants in aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böttcher, T.; Schroll, R.

    2009-04-01

    Spray-drift, drainage, erosion and runoff events are the major causes responsible for deportation of agrochemicals as micropollutants to aquatic non-target sites. These processes can lead to the contamination of nearby freshwater ecosystems with considerably high concentrations of xenobiotics. Thus, it is important to unravel the fate of these pollutants and to evaluate their ecological effects. A novel approach to address this goal was established by the development of a microcosm with multiple sampling abilities enabling quantitative assessment of organic volatilisation, mineralization, metabolization and distribution within the aquatic ecosystem. This microcosm system was designed to support modelling approaches of the catchment scale and gain insights into the fate of pesticides simulating a large scale water body. The potential of this microcosm was exemplified for Isoproturon (IPU), a phenylurea derived systemic herbicide, which is frequently found as contaminant in water samples and with the free-floating macrophyte Lemna minor as non-target species, that is common to occur in rural water bodies. During 21 days exposure time, only a small amount of 14C labeled IPU was removed from the aquatic medium. The major portion (about 5%) was accumulated by Lemna minor resulting in a BCF of 15.8. IPU-volatilisation was very low with 0.13% of the initially applied herbicide. Only a minor amount of IPU was completely metabolized, presumably by rhizosphere microorganisms and released as 14CO2. The novel experimental system allowed to quantitatively investigate the fate of IPU and showed a high reproducibility with a mean average 14C-recovery rate of 97.1

  5. Concentration of 129I in aquatic biota collected from a lake adjacent to the spent nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Rokkasho, Japan.

    PubMed

    Ueda, Shinji; Kakiuchi, Hideki; Hasegawa, Hidenao; Kawamura, Hidehisa; Hisamatsu, Shun'ichi

    2015-11-01

    The spent nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Rokkasho, Japan, has been undergoing final testing since March 2006. During April 2006-October 2008, that spent fuel was cut and chemically processed, the plant discharged (129)I into the atmosphere and coastal waters. To study (129)I behaviour in brackish Lake Obuchi, which is adjacent to the plant, (129)I concentrations in aquatic biota were measured by accelerator mass spectrometry. Owing to (129)I discharge from the plant, the (129)I concentration in the biota started to rise from the background concentration in 2006 and was high during 2007-08. The (129)I concentration has been rapidly decreasing after the fuel cutting and chemically processing were finished. The (129)I concentration factors in the biota were higher than those reported by IAEA for marine organisms and similar to those reported for freshwater biota. The estimated annual committed effective dose due to ingestion of foods with the maximum (129)I concentration in the biota samples was 2.8 nSv y(-1).

  6. Development of a dynamic model for estimating the food web transfer of chemicals in small aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Nfon, Erick; Armitage, James M; Cousins, Ian T

    2011-11-15

    A dynamic combined fate and food web model was developed to estimate the food web transfer of chemicals in small aquatic ecosystems (i.e. ponds). A novel feature of the modeling approach is that aquatic macrophytes (submerged aquatic vegetation) were included in the fate model and were also a food item in the food web model. The paper aims to investigate whether macrophytes are effective at mitigating chemical exposure and to compare the modeling approach developed here with previous modeling approaches recommended in the European Union (EU) guideline for risk assessment of pesticides. The model was used to estimate bioaccumulation of three hypothetical chemicals of varying hydrophobicity in a pond food web comprising 11 species. Three different macrophyte biomass densities were simulated in the model experiments to determine the influence of macrophytes on fate and bioaccumulation. Macrophytes were shown to have a significant effect on the fate and food web transfer of highly hydrophobic compounds with log KOW>=5. Modeled peak concentrations in biota were highest for the scenarios with the lowest macrophyte biomass density. The distribution and food web transfer of the hypothetical compound with the lowest hydrophobicity (log KOW=3) was not affected by the inclusion of aquatic macrophytes in the pond environment. For the three different hypothetical chemicals and at all macrophyte biomass densities, the maximum predicted concentrations in the top predator in the food web model were at least one order of magnitude lower than the values estimated using methods suggested in EU guidelines. The EU guideline thus provides a highly conservative estimate of risk. In our opinion, and subject to further model evaluation, a realistic assessment of dynamic food web transfer and risk can be obtained using the model presented here.

  7. Patterns of Life in the Water. Student Field Studies of Two of Franklin County's Aquatic Ecosystems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Toole, Kathleen P.

    Described in this manual are two field investigations which utilize the natural environment to teach ecological principles to high school students. In groups of five to ten, students study two aquatic environments and then prepare a booklet which summarizes their work. The manual is divided into four parts: (1) teacher's guide; (2) student's…

  8. Aquatic Ecosystem Services in the 21st Century Northeast Corridor: Assessment Using a Regional Earth System Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenzweig, B.; Miara, A.; Stewart, R. J.; Wollheim, W. M.; Vorosmarty, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    Aquatic ecosystems of the Northeast United States will be significantly impacted by both global climate change and the regional-scale strategic management decisions made in the next few years. We have developed a Regional Earth System Model for the Northeast Corridor (NE-RESM) that simulates the impacts of climate, land use, and development policy on the interacting cycles of energy, water, carbon and nutrients. The NE-RESM will provide a unique and critically needed tool for policymakers to understand how their current decisions will impact ecosystem services over the 21st Century. To test our modeling framework, we conducted a retrospective experiment focusing on the water-energy-economy nexus during the period 2000-2010. Component models were developed to 'translate' physical outputs from the NE-RESM - such as stream discharge and water temperature - into ecosystem services including water regulation for thermoelectric cooling and the ability for streams to serve as a refugia for wildlife. Simulations were performed both with and without Clean Water Act limits on thermal pollution. Through this work, we were able to obtain spatially distributed information on how these laws impact power generation by the thermoelectric sector but also enable Northeast streams to serve as habitat for temperature-sensitive aquatic species (Brook Trout, Atlantic Salmon, River Herring and the American Eel). Our ongoing research examines future climate and policy scenarios through 2100. We are considering the impact of changing land cover patterns (a return to agriculture vs. suburban sprawl) and various strategies to meet energy and municipal water needs under different Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) developed for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC AR5).

  9. Project AProWa: a national view on managing trade-offs between agricultural production and conservation of aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietzel, Anne; Rahn, Eric; Stamm, Christian

    2014-05-01

    Swiss agriculture is legally committed to fulfill several, partially conflicting goals such as agricultural production on the one hand and the conservation of natural resources on the other hand. In the context of the research project AProWa ("Agricultural Production and Water"), the relationships between the production aspect and the conservation of aquatic ecosystems is analyzed with a holistic approach. Agricultural production and the protection of water resources have high potential for conflicts: Farmers use ground and surface water to irrigate their fields. On the other hand, drainage systems enable the production on otherwise unfavorably wet soils. These in turn often affect ground water recharge and divert precipitation directly into surface waters, which changes their hydrological regime. Typically, drainage systems also elevate the input of nutrients and pesticides into the water bodies. In general, applied fertilizers, plant protection products, veterinary drugs and phytohormones of cultivated plants are introduced into the ground and surface waters through different processes such as drift, leaching, runoff, preferential flow or erosion. They influence the nutrient cycles and ecological health of aquatic systems. The nutrient and pesticide loss processes themselves can be altered by tillage operations and other agricultural practices. Furthermore, the competition for space can lead to additional conflicts between agriculture and the protection of aquatic ecosystems. For example, channelized or otherwise morphologically changed rivers do not have a natural discharge pattern and are often not suitable for the local flora and fauna; but naturally meandering rivers need space that cannot be used for agriculture. In a highly industrialized and densely populated country like Switzerland, all these potential conflicts are of importance. Although it is typically seen as a water-rich country, local and seasonal overexploitation of rivers through water extraction

  10. The remote sensing of aquatic macrophytes Part 1: Color-infrared aerial photography as a tool for identification and mapping of littoral vegetation. Part 2: Aerial photography as a quantitative tool for the investigation of aquatic ecosystems. [Lake Wingra, Wisconsin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gustafson, T. D.; Adams, M. S.

    1973-01-01

    Research was initiated to use aerial photography as an investigative tool in studies that are part of an intensive aquatic ecosystem research effort at Lake Wingra, Madison, Wisconsin. It is anticipated that photographic techniques would supply information about the growth and distribution of littoral macrophytes with efficiency and accuracy greater than conventional methods.

  11. 76 FR 55060 - Aquatic Ecosystems, Water Quality, and Global Change: Challenges of Conducting Multi-Stressor...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-06

    ... resilience of ecosystems and human systems to a variety of existing stresses and mal- adaptations. DATES: The... a result of existing global change stresses and mal-adaptations. The work described in this...

  12. ARE AIRBORNE CONTAMINANTS A RISK FACTOR TO AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS IN REMOTE WESTERN NATIONAL PARKS (USA)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Western Airborne Contaminants Assessment Project (WACAP) was initiated in 2002 by the National Park Service to determine if airborne contaminants were having an impact on remote western ecosystems. Multiple sample media (snow, water, sediment, fish and terrestrial vegetation...

  13. Cyanobacterial toxins: modes of actions, fate in aquatic and soil ecosystems, phytotoxicity and bioaccumulation in agricultural crops.

    PubMed

    Corbel, Sylvain; Mougin, Christian; Bouaïcha, Noureddine

    2014-02-01

    The occurrence of harmful cyanobacterial blooms in surface waters is often accompanied by the production of a variety of cyanotoxins. These toxins are designed to target in humans and animals specific organs on which they act: hepatotoxins (liver), neurotoxins (nervous system), cytotoxic alkaloids, and dermatotoxins (skin), but they often have important side effects too. When introduced into the soil ecosystem by spray irrigation of crops they may affect the same molecular pathways in plants having identical or similar target organs, tissues, cells or biomolecules. There are also several indications that terrestrial plants, including food crop plants, can bioaccumulate cyanotoxins and present, therefore, potential health hazards for human and animals. The number of publications concerned with phytotoxic effects of cyanotoxins on agricultural plants has increased recently. In this review, we first examine different cyanotoxins and their modes of actions in humans and mammals and occurrence of target biomolecules in vegetable organisms. Then we present environmental concentrations of cyanotoxins in freshwaters and their fate in aquatic and soil ecosystems. Finally, we highlight bioaccumulation of cyanotoxins in plants used for feed and food and its consequences on animals and human health. Overall, our review shows that the information on the effects of cyanotoxins on non-target organisms in the terrestrial environment is particularly scarce, and that there are still serious gaps in the knowledge about the fate in the soil ecosystems and phytotoxicity of these toxins.

  14. Mycobacterium ulcerans Ecological Dynamics and Its Association with Freshwater Ecosystems and Aquatic Communities: Results from a 12-Month Environmental Survey in Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    Garchitorena, Andrés; Roche, Benjamin; Kamgang, Roger; Ossomba, Joachim; Babonneau, Jérémie; Landier, Jordi; Fontanet, Arnaud; Flahault, Antoine

    2014-01-01

    Background Mycobacterium ulcerans (MU) is the agent responsible for Buruli Ulcer (BU), an emerging skin disease with dramatic socioeconomic and health outcomes, especially in rural settings. BU emergence and distribution is linked to aquatic ecosystems in tropical and subtropical countries, especially to swampy and flooded areas. Aquatic animal organisms are likely to play a role either as host reservoirs or vectors of the bacilli. However, information on MU ecological dynamics, both in space and time, is dramatically lacking. As a result, the ecology of the disease agent, and consequently its mode of transmission, remains largely unknown, which jeopardizes public health attempts for its control. The objective of this study was to gain insight on MU environmental distribution and colonization of aquatic organisms through time. Methodology/Principal Findings Longitudinal sampling of 32 communities of aquatic macro-invertebrates and vertebrates was conducted from different environments in two BU endemic regions in Cameroon during 12 months. As a result, 238,496 individuals were classified and MU presence was assessed by qPCR in 3,084 sample-pools containing these aquatic organisms. Our study showed a broad distribution of MU in all ecosystems and taxonomic groups, with important regional differences in its occurrence. Colonization dynamics fluctuated along the year, with the highest peaks in August and October. The large variations observed in the colonization dynamics of different taxonomic groups and aquatic ecosystems suggest that the trends shown here are the result of complex ecological processes that need further investigation. Conclusion/Perspectives This is the largest field study on MU ecology to date, providing the first detailed description of its spatio-temporal dynamics in different aquatic ecosystems within BU endemic regions. We argue that coupling this data with fine-scale epidemiological data through statistical and mathematical models will provide a

  15. The mysteriously variable half-life of dissolved organic matter in aquatic ecosystems: artefact or insight?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Chris; Fovet, Ophelie; Jones, Tim; Jones, Davey; Moldan, Filip; Futter, Martyn

    2016-04-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) fluxes from land to water represent an important loss term in the terrestrial carbon balance, a major pathway in the global carbon cycle, a significant influence on aquatic light, nutrient and energy regimes, and an important concern for drinking water production. Although freshwaters are now recognised as zones of active carbon cycling, rather than passive conduits for carbon transport, evidence regarding the magnitude of, and controls on, DOM cycling in aquatic systems is incomplete and in some cases seemingly contradictory, with DOM 'half-lives' ranging from a few days to many years. Bringing together experimental, isotopic, catchment mass balance and modelling data, we suggest that apparently conflicting results can be reconciled through understanding of differences in: i) the terrestrial sources of DOM within heterogeneous landscapes, and consequent differences in its reactivity and stoichiometry; ii) experimental methodologies (i.e. which reactions are actually being measured), and iii) the extent of prior transformation of DOM upstream of the point of study. We argue that rapid photo-degradation, particularly of peat-derived DOM, is a key process in headwaters, whilst apparently slow DOM turnover in downstream, agriculturally-influenced lakes and rivers can partly be explained by the offsetting effect of in situ DOM production. This production appears to be strongly constrained by nutrient supply, thus linking DOM turnover and composition to the supply of inorganic nutrient inputs from diffuse agricultural pollution, and also providing a possible mechanistic link between aquatic DOM production and terrestrial DOM breakdown via the mineralisation and re-assimilation of organic nutrients. A more complete conceptual understanding of these interlinked processes will provide an improved understanding of the sources and fate of aquatic DOM, its role in the global carbon cycle, and the impact of anthropogenic activities, for example

  16. Trophic complexity enhances ecosystem functioning in an aquatic detritus-based model system.

    PubMed

    Jabiol, Jérémy; McKie, Brendan G; Bruder, Andreas; Bernadet, Caroline; Gessner, Mark O; Chauvet, Eric

    2013-09-01

    1. Understanding the functional significance of species interactions in ecosystems has become a major challenge as biodiversity declines rapidly worldwide. Ecosystem consequences arising from the loss of diversity either within trophic levels (horizontal diversity) or across trophic levels (vertical diversity) are well documented. However, simultaneous losses of species at different trophic levels may also result in interactive effects, with potentially complex outcomes for ecosystem functioning. 2. Because of logistical constraints, the outcomes of such interactions have been difficult to assess in experiments involving large metazoan species. Here, we take advantage of a detritus-based model system to experimentally assess the consequences of biodiversity change within both horizontal and vertical food-web components on leaf-litter decomposition, a fundamental process in a wide range of ecosystems. 3. Our concurrent manipulation of fungal decomposer diversity (0, 1 or 5 species), detritivore diversity (0, 1 or 3 species), and the presence of predatory fish scent showed that trophic complexity is key to eliciting diversity effects on ecosystem functioning. Specifically, although fungi and detritivores tended to promote decomposition individually, rates were highest in the most complete community where all trophic levels were represented at the highest possible species richness. In part, the effects were trait-mediated, reflected in the contrasting foraging responses of the detritivore species to predator scent. 4. Our results thus highlight the importance of interactive effects of simultaneous species loss within multiple trophic levels on ecosystem functioning. If a common phenomenon, this outcome suggests that functional ecosystem impairment resulting from widespread biodiversity loss could be more severe than inferred from previous experiments confined to varying diversity within single trophic levels.

  17. Aquatic risk assessment of pesticides in surface waters in and adjacent to the Everglades and Biscayne National Parks: II. Probabilistic analyses.

    PubMed

    Carriger, John F; Rand, Gary M

    2008-10-01

    A screening-level aquatic probabilistic risk assessment was completed to determine the potential risks of organic pesticides found in surface waters of the C-111 freshwater basin (11 sites at the east boundary of the Everglades National Park) and adjacent estuarine tidal zones (two sites in northeast Florida Bay, one site in south Biscayne Bay) in south Florida. It followed the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) ecological risk framework and focused only on the acute and chronic risks of endosulfan and chlorpyrifos individually and jointly with atrazine, metolachlor, and malathion by comparing distributions of surface water exposure concentrations with the distributions of species toxicity data. The highest risk of acute effects was associated with endosulfan exposure to freshwater arthropods at S-178/site C on the C-111 system, followed by endosulfan effects to estuarine arthropods at Joe Bay in northeast Florida Bay. The highest risk of acute effects from joint toxicity of pesticides was to estuarine arthropods in Joe Bay followed by freshwater arthropods in S-178/site C. For fish, the highest acute risk was for endosulfan at S-178/site C. There was low potential for acute risk of endosulfan to fish at estuarine sites. Joint probability curves indicated that the majority of potential risks to arthropods and fish were due to endosulfan concentrations and not to chlorpyrifos, at S-178/site C. In addition, the highest risk of acute effects for saltwater organisms was in Joe Bay, which receives water from the C-111. The potential risk of chronic effects from pesticide exposures was minimal at fresh- and saltwater sites except at S-178/site C, where endosulfan concentrations showed the highest exceedence of species toxicity values. In general, potential risks were higher in February than June.

  18. Dissolved organic carbon content and characteristics in relation to carbon dioxide partial pressure across Poyang Lake wetlands and adjacent aquatic systems in the Changjiang basin.

    PubMed

    Wang, Huaxin; Jiao, Ruyuan; Wang, Fang; Zhang, Lu; Yan, Weijin

    2016-12-01

    Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) plays diverse roles in carbon biogeochemical cycles. Here, we explored the link between DOC and pCO2 using high-performance size-exclusion chromatography (HPSEC) with UV254 detection and excitation emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence spectroscopy to determine the molecular weight distribution (MW) and the spectral characteristics of DOC, respectively. The relationship between DOC and pCO2 was investigated in the Poyang Lake wetlands and their adjacent aquatic systems. The results indicated significant spatial variation in the DOC concentrations, MW distributions, and pCO2. The DOC concentration was higher in the wetlands than in the rivers and lakes. pCO2 was high in wetlands in which the dominant vegetation was Phragmites australis, whereas it was low in wetlands in which Carex tristachya was the dominant species. DOC was divided into five fractions according to MW, as follows: super-low MW (SLMW, <1 kDa); low MW (LMW, 1-2.5 kDa); intermediate MW (IMW, 2.5-3.5 kDa); high MW (HMW, 3.5-6 kDa); and super-high MW (SMW, > 40 kDa). Rivers contained high proportions of HMW and extremely low amounts of SLMW, whereas wetlands had relatively high proportions of SLMW. The proportion of SMW (SMWp) was particularly high in wetlands. We found that pCO2 significantly positively correlated with the proportion of IMW, and significantly negatively correlated with SMWp. These data improve our understanding of the MW of bioavailable DOC and its conversion to CO2. The present results demonstrate that both the content and characteristics of DOC significantly affect pCO2. pCO2 and DOC must be studied further to help understanding the role of the wetland on the regional CO2 budget.

  19. Integration of aquatic fate and ecological responses to linear alkyl benzene sulfonate (LAS) in model stream ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Belanger, S E; Bowling, J W; Lee, D M; LeBlanc, E M; Kerr, K M; McAvoy, D C; Christman, S C; Davidson, D H

    2002-06-01

    An integrated model stream ecosystem fate and effect study of dodecyl linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (C(12)LAS) was performed in the summer and fall of 1996. The study addressed responses of periphytic microbes, immature benthic fauna including abundance, drift, and emergence of adult insects in a 56-day exposure. Exposures ranged from 126 to 2978 microg/L and were continuously presented in a single-pass, flow-through test system. Microbial heterotrophs acclimated to C(12)LAS exposure quickly (14 days) and biodegraded C(12)LAS at all concentrations. Blue-green algae responded by increasing in abundance with increasing C(12)LAS concentration. Invertebrates responded by increased drift and reduced benthic abundances at concentrations exceeding 293 microg/L. Emergence at 927 microg/L also declined relative to the control. Adverse responses for mayflies and chironomids were indicated using univariate statistical techniques. Multivariate techniques indicated these taxa plus mollusks, aquatic worms, caddisflies, and stoneflies were impaired at some concentrations. Bioavailability of C(12)LAS was investigated in streams as a function of the total suspended solid load in the water column driven by local weather and watershed patterns. A continuous bioavailability model indicated exposure was reduced by an average of 8.5+/-8.9%. A model ecosystem no-observed-effect concentration (NOEC) was concluded to be 293 microg/L based on measured water column exposure and adjusted to 268 microg/L by the bioavailability model. A literature review of 13 available model ecosystem studies was conducted and NOEC conclusions were adjusted by a structure-activity relationship to a dodecyl chain length (sulfophenyl position and distribution being ignored due to lack of information in the reviewed studies). Lentic studies (n=7) were found to have higher NOECs than lotic studies (n=6) and were more variable. Mean NOECs+/-SD for all studies, lentic studies only, and lotic studies only were 3320

  20. Genetically modified crops and aquatic ecosystems: considerations for environmental risk assessment and non-target organism testing.

    PubMed

    Carstens, Keri; Anderson, Jennifer; Bachman, Pamela; De Schrijver, Adinda; Dively, Galen; Federici, Brian; Hamer, Mick; Gielkens, Marco; Jensen, Peter; Lamp, William; Rauschen, Stefan; Ridley, Geoff; Romeis, Jörg; Waggoner, Annabel

    2012-08-01

    Environmental risk assessments (ERA) support regulatory decisions for the commercial cultivation of genetically modified (GM) crops. The ERA for terrestrial agroecosystems is well-developed, whereas guidance for ERA of GM crops in aquatic ecosystems is not as well-defined. The purpose of this document is to demonstrate how comprehensive problem formulation can be used to develop a conceptual model and to identify potential exposure pathways, using Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) maize as a case study. Within problem formulation, the insecticidal trait, the crop, the receiving environment, and protection goals were characterized, and a conceptual model was developed to identify routes through which aquatic organisms may be exposed to insecticidal proteins in maize tissue. Following a tiered approach for exposure assessment, worst-case exposures were estimated using standardized models, and factors mitigating exposure were described. Based on exposure estimates, shredders were identified as the functional group most likely to be exposed to insecticidal proteins. However, even using worst-case assumptions, the exposure of shredders to Bt maize was low and studies supporting the current risk assessments were deemed adequate. Determining if early tier toxicity studies are necessary to inform the risk assessment for a specific GM crop should be done on a case by case basis, and should be guided by thorough problem formulation and exposure assessment. The processes used to develop the Bt maize case study are intended to serve as a model for performing risk assessments on future traits and crops.

  1. Do pharmaceuticals reach and affect the aquatic ecosystems in Brazil? A critical review of current studies in a developing country.

    PubMed

    Quadra, Gabrielle Rabelo; Oliveira de Souza, Helena; Costa, Rafaela Dos Santos; Fernandez, Marcos Antonio Dos Santos

    2017-01-01

    Pharmaceutical residues are not completely removed in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) becoming contaminants in aquatic ecosystems. Thereby, it is important to investigate their concentrations in the environment and the possible consequences of their occurrence, including for human health. Here, we briefly reviewed the paths of pharmaceuticals to reach the environment, their behavior and fate in the environment, and the possible consequences of their occurrence. Moreover, we synthetized all the studies about the detection of pharmaceuticals in Brazilian water bodies and the available ecotoxicological knowledge on their effects. In this study, when we compare the data found on these compounds worldwide, we observed that Brazilian surface waters present considerable concentrations of 17α-ethinylestradiol, 17β-estradiol, and caffeine. In general, concentrations found in aquatic systems worldwide seems to be low; however, ecotoxicological tests showed that even these low concentrations can cause sublethal effects in biota. The knowledge about the effects of continuous exposure and mixtures is sparse. In summary, new research is urgently required about the effects of these compounds in biota-including long-term exposition and mixture tests-and on specific technologies to remove these compounds in water bodies and WWTPs, besides the introduction of new policies for pharmaceutical use.

  2. Uptake of uranium by aquatic plants growing in fresh water ecosystem around uranium mill tailings pond at Jaduguda, India.

    PubMed

    Jha, V N; Tripathi, R M; Sethy, N K; Sahoo, S K

    2016-01-01

    Concentration of uranium was determined in aquatic plants and substrate (sediment or water) of fresh water ecosystem on and around uranium mill tailings pond at Jaduguda, India. Aquatic plant/substrate concentration ratios (CRs) of uranium were estimated for different sites on and around the uranium mill tailings disposal area. These sites include upstream and downstream side of surface water sources carrying the treated tailings effluent, a small pond inside tailings disposal area and residual water of this area. Three types of plant groups were investigated namely algae (filamentous and non-filamentous), other free floating & water submerged and sediment rooted plants. Wide variability in concentration ratio was observed for different groups of plants studied. The filamentous algae uranium concentration was significantly correlated with that of water (r=0.86, p<0.003). For sediment rooted plants significant correlation was found between uranium concentration in plant and the substrate (r=0.88, p<0.001). Both for other free floating species and sediment rooted plants, uranium concentration was significantly correlated with Mn, Fe, and Ni concentration of plants (p<0.01). Filamentous algae, Jussiaea and Pistia owing to their high bioproductivity, biomass, uranium accumulation and concentration ratio can be useful for prospecting phytoremediation of stream carrying treated or untreated uranium mill tailings effluent.

  3. Radiological bioconcentration factors for aquatic, terrestrial, and wetland ecosystems at the Savannah River site

    SciTech Connect

    Friday, G.P.; Cummins, C.L.; Schwartzman, A.L.

    1996-12-31

    Since the early 1950s, the Savannah River Site (SRS) released over 50 radionuclides into the environment while producing nuclear defense materials. These releases directly exposed aquatic and terrestrial biota to ionizing radiation from surface water, soil, and sediment, and also indirectly by the ingestion of items in the food chain. As part of new missions to develop waste management strategies and identify cost-effective environmental restoration options, knowledge concerning the uptake and distribution of these radionuclides is essential. This report compiles and summarizes site-specific bioconcentration factors for selected radionuclides released at SRS.

  4. RELATIONSHIPS AMONG EXCEEDENCES OF CHEMICAL CRITERIA OR GUIDELINES, THE RESULTS OF AMBIENT TOXICITY TESTS AND COMMUNITY METRICS IN AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS (FINAL)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The EPA document, Relationships Among Exceedances of Chemical Criteria or Guidelines, the Results of Ambient Toxicity Tests, and Community Metrics in Aquatic Ecosystems, presents two studies where the three general approaches for the ecological assessment of contaminant ex...

  5. Foundations of Physical Theory, I: Force and Energy. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Fundamentals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pearson, Nolan E.

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module is one of two units on the foundations of physical theory and the…

  6. Programmer's Guide for FFORM. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, Lougenia; Gales, Larry

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. FFORM is a portable format-free input subroutine package written in ANSI Fortran IV…

  7. Applications of the First Law to Ecological Systems. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Thermodynamics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, R. D.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This report describes concepts presented in another module called "The First Law of…

  8. Fluid Dynamics Applied to Streams. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cowan, Christina E.

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module deals specifically with concepts that are basic to fluid flow and…

  9. Calculus-Integration. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Applied Mathematics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hertzberg, Richard C.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. The module is directed toward intermediate undergraduate students of the ecological sciences…

  10. Calculus - Differentiation. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Applied Mathematics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hertzberg, Richard C.

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module is used to introduce the biology student to differential calculus, a…

  11. Exploring Fish Diversity as a Determinant of Ecosystem Properties in Aquatic Food Webs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carey, Michael P.

    2009-01-01

    Dramatic biodiversity changes occurring globally from species loss and invasion have altered native food webs and ecosystem processes. My research objectives are to understand the consequences of fish diversity to freshwater systems by (1) examining the food web consequences of multiple top predators, (2) determining how biodiversity influences…

  12. Transpiration and Leaf Temperature. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gates, David M.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This report introduces two models of the thermal energy budget of a leaf. Typical values for…

  13. Thermodynamics of Irreversible Processes. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levin, Michael; Gallucci, V. F.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module describes the application of irreversible thermodynamics to biology. It begins with…

  14. Soil Heat Flow. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simpson, James R.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. Soil heat flow and the resulting soil temperature distributions have ecological consequences…

  15. Light and Sound: Evolutionary Aspects. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roseman, Leonard D.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module is concerned with the exchange of energy between an organism and its environment in…

  16. Significant runoff exports of particulate nitrogen (PN) with large tropical storms: Implications of climate variability for watersheds and aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inamdar, S. P.; Dhillon, G.

    2014-12-01

    Nitrogen (N) is an important nutrient that contributes to eutrophication of water bodies and plays a key role in various terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem processes. Thus, understanding the amounts and timing of N inputs from watersheds to aquatic ecosystems is critical. Most research to date has focused on the dissolved forms (< 0.45 micron) of N such as nitrate-N and organic N, which constitute a major portion of the N flux during baseflow and small to moderate storm events. The amounts of particulate N (PN > 0.45 micron) in runoff, can however, increase dramatically with large storms such as those associated with tropical depressions and hurricanes and can have a lasting impact on downstream aquatic systems. We determined the exports and storm-event patterns of PN for two (12 and 79 ha) intensively instrumented, headwater, forested, catchments located in the Piedmont Region of Maryland. Stream runoff sampling has been performed for baseflow and storm events since 2011 and has included numerous large tropical storms including Irene (2011) and Sandy (2012). Key questions that we address are: How significant is the PN flux, i.e., what proportion of the annual N is exported as PN during the large tropical events? How does PN export vary with storm magnitude? How do PN exports change with catchment scale? What are the temporal patterns of dissolved and particulate N species during the largest storms? Observations for tropical storm Irene (2011) revealed that in just 59 hours this storm contributed to one-third of the annual (2011) N flux from the 12 ha watershed and 87% of this N was in particulate form. A large portion of this particulate N is likely deposited in the fluvial network, especially in headwater reaches, and could potentially become bioavailable. Understanding these contributions from large events is especially important considering that climate-change scenarios indicate increased intensity of hurricanes and tropical storms and thus potentially a greater

  17. Changes in HTO and OBT activity concentrations in the Perch Lake aquatic ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Kim, S B; Farrow, F; Bredlaw, M; Stuart, M

    2016-12-01

    Perch Lake, a small shallow shield lake located on the Chalk River Laboratories (CRL) site, contains elevated levels of tritium due to inputs from a nearby nuclear waste management area. The releases have been going on for many years but tritium levels in Perch Lake have been gradually decreasing since about year 2000. Lake water, sediments, aquatic plants, clams and fish were collected during the summer and fall of 2003 and 2013 at three locations in the lake. HTO activity concentrations were measured in all samples and OBT activity concentrations were measured in sediments, plants, clams and fish. In 2003, 2013, HTO activity concentrations in lake water were roughly uniform in time and space, except close to the shoreline where concentrations were fluctuating according to stream water and groundwater tritium levels in streams entering the lake. HTO activity concentrations of biota were similar to concentrations in lake water at the site where they were collected. OBT activity concentrations in biota were not always correlating with the lake water HTO levels. OBT to HTO ratios were found to be less than 1 for aquatic plants, around 1 for clams and fish and above 1 for birds reared on the shore of the lake.

  18. Removal of terrestrial dissolved organic carbon in aquatic ecosystems of a temperate river network.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wollheim, W. M.; Stewart, R. J.; Aiken, G.; Butler, K. D.; Morse, N.; Salisbury, J.

    2015-12-01

    Surface waters play an important role in the global carbon balance. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) fluxes are a major transfer of terrestrial carbon to river systems, and the net removal of terrestrial DOC in aquatic systems is poorly constrained. We used a combination of spatially distributed sampling of three DOC fractions, nitrate, and chloride in streams of different size throughout a river network and modeling to quantify the net removal of terrestrial DOC relative to other constituents during a summer base flow period. The approach was applied to the 400 km2 Ipswich River watershed, MA, USA. We found that aquatic reactivity of terrestrial DOC leading to net loss is low, closer to conservative chloride than to reactive nitrogen. Net removal of DOC occurred mainly from the hydrophobic organic acid fraction, while hydrophilic and transphilic acids showed no net change. Model fits were improved using the different DOC fractions than when using bulk DOC, indicating that partitioning of bulk DOC into different fractions is critical for understanding terrestrial DOC removal. These findings suggest that river systems may have only a modest ability to alter the amounts of terrestrial DOC delivered to coastal zones.

  19. Balanced nitrogen economy as a flexible strategy on yield stabilizing and quality of aquatic food crops in wetland ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Puste, A M; Sarkar, P K; Das, D K

    2005-09-01

    In wetland ecosystem, nitrogen along with other elements and its management is most imperative for the production of so many aquatic food, non-food and beneficial medicinal plants and for the improvement of soil and water characteristics. With great significant importance of INM (integrated nutrient management) as sources, emphasizing on management on nitrogen as a key element and its divergence, a case study was undertaken on such aquatic food crops (starch and protein-rich, most popular and remunerative) in the farmers' field of low-lying 'Tal' situation of New Alluvial Zone of Indian subtropics. The study was designed in factorial randomized block design, where, three important aquatic food crops (water chestnut (Trapa bispinosa Roxb.), makhana (Euryale ferox Salisb.) and water lily (Nymphaea spp.) as major factor and eleven combinations of organic and inorganic sources of nutrients as sub-factor was considered in the experiment. It revealed from the results that the production of fresh kernels or nuts of water chestnut (8.57 t ha(-1)), matured nut yield of makhana (3.06 t ha(-1)) and flower stalks of water-lily as vegetables (6.38 t ha(-1)) including its nutritional quality (starch, protein, sugar and minerals) was remarkably influenced with the application of both organic (neem oilcake @ 0.2 t ha(-1)) and inorganic sources (NPK @ 30:20:20 kg ha(-1) along with spraying of NPK @ 0.5% each over crop canopy at 20 days interval after transplanting) than the other INM combinations applied to the crops. Among the crops, highest WCYE (water chestnut yield equivalence) exhibited in makhana due to its high price of popped-form in the country, which is being exported to other countries at now. Sole application of both (organic and inorganic sources) with lower range did not produce any significant outcome from the study and exhibited lower value for all the crops. Besides production of food crops, INM also greatly influenced the soil and water characterization and it was

  20. Earthquakes and their influence on the large aquatic ecosystems (taking Lake Sevan as an example).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gulakyan, S.; Wilkinson, I.

    2003-04-01

    Lake dynamic and earthquakes. The model includes hydrothermodynamic equations and boundary conditions at the surface and on the lake bed, include configuration and depth of the lake, the temperature regime, wind velocity and direction, etc. Ground motion during an earthquake is variable, but dependent on the sediment type. Here are considered the following questions: · Earthquakes and hypolimnion, stratification . · Inertia waves, aftershocks of earthquakes and lake dynamic. · Earthquakes and ground water circulation in water ecosystems. · Earthquakes and water chemistry of an ecosystem ( phosphorous, calcium carbonate, gases and etc). · Earthquakes and benthos species. These models implemented for the data of Lake Sevan (Armenia). We acknowledge, with thanks, NATO for supporting this program through Linkage Grant No. 9-975530.

  1. Managing the effects of multiple stressors on aquatic ecosystems under water scarcity. The GLOBAQUA project.

    PubMed

    Navarro-Ortega, Alícia; Acuña, Vicenç; Bellin, Alberto; Burek, Peter; Cassiani, Giorgio; Choukr-Allah, Redouane; Dolédec, Sylvain; Elosegi, Arturo; Ferrari, Federico; Ginebreda, Antoni; Grathwohl, Peter; Jones, Colin; Rault, Philippe Ker; Kok, Kasper; Koundouri, Phoebe; Ludwig, Ralf Peter; Merz, Ralf; Milacic, Radmila; Muñoz, Isabel; Nikulin, Grigory; Paniconi, Claudio; Paunović, Momir; Petrovic, Mira; Sabater, Laia; Sabaterb, Sergi; Skoulikidis, Nikolaos Th; Slob, Adriaan; Teutsch, Georg; Voulvoulis, Nikolaos; Barceló, Damià

    2015-01-15

    Water scarcity is a serious environmental problem in many European regions, and will likely increase in the near future as a consequence of increased abstraction and climate change. Water scarcity exacerbates the effects of multiple stressors, and thus results in decreased water quality. It impacts river ecosystems, threatens the services they provide, and it will force managers and policy-makers to change their current practices. The EU-FP7 project GLOBAQUA aims at identifying the prevalence, interaction and linkages between stressors, and to assess their effects on the chemical and ecological status of freshwater ecosystems in order to improve water management practice and policies. GLOBAQUA assembles a multidisciplinary team of 21 European plus 2 non-European scientific institutions, as well as water authorities and river basin managers. The project includes experts in hydrology, chemistry, biology, geomorphology, modelling, socio-economics, governance science, knowledge brokerage, and policy advocacy. GLOBAQUA studies six river basins (Ebro, Adige, Sava, Evrotas, Anglian and Souss Massa) affected by water scarcity, and aims to answer the following questions: how does water scarcity interact with other existing stressors in the study river basins? How will these interactions change according to the different scenarios of future global change? Which will be the foreseeable consequences for river ecosystems? How will these in turn affect the services the ecosystems provide? How should management and policies be adapted to minimise the ecological, economic and societal consequences? These questions will be approached by combining data-mining, field- and laboratory-based research, and modelling. Here, we outline the general structure of the project and the activities to be conducted within the fourteen work-packages of GLOBAQUA.

  2. Interactions among invaders: community and ecosystem effects of multiple invasive species in an experimental aquatic system.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Pieter T J; Olden, Julian D; Solomon, Christopher T; Vander Zanden, M Jake

    2009-02-01

    With ecosystems increasingly supporting multiple invasive species, interactions among invaders could magnify or ameliorate the undesired consequences for native communities and ecosystems. We evaluated the individual and combined effects of rusty crayfish (Orconectes rusticus) and Chinese mystery snails [Bellamya (=Cipangopaludina) chinensis] on native snail communities (Physa, Helisoma and Lymnaea sp.) and ecosystem attributes (algal chlorophyll a and nutrient concentrations). Both invaders are widespread in the USA and commonly co-occur within northern temperate lakes, underscoring the importance of understanding their singular and joint effects. An outdoor mesocosm experiment revealed that while the two invaders had only weakly negative effects upon one another, both negatively affected the abundance and biomass of native snails, and their combined presence drove one native species to extinction and reduced a second by >95%. Owing to its larger size and thicker shell, adult Bellamya were protected from crayfish attack relative to native species (especially Physa and Lymnaea), suggesting the co-occurrence of these invaders in nature could have elevated consequences for native communities. The per capita impacts of Orconectes (a snail predator) on native snails were substantially greater than those of Bellamya (a snail competitor). Crayfish predation also had a cascading effect by reducing native snail biomass, leading to increased periphyton growth. Bellamya, in contrast, reduced periphyton biomass, likely causing a reduction in growth by native lymnaeid snails. Bellamya also increased water column N:P ratio, possibly because of a low P excretion rate relative to native snail species. Together, these findings highlight the importance of understanding interactions among invasive species, which can have significant community- and ecosystem-level effects.

  3. Managing the effects of multiple stressors on aquatic ecosystems under water scarcity. The GLOBAQUA project

    PubMed Central

    Navarro-Ortega, Alícia; Acuña, Vicenç; Bellin, Alberto; Burek, Peter; Cassiani, Giorgio; Choukr-Allah, Redouane; Dolédec, Sylvain; Elosegi, Arturo; Ferrari, Federico; Ginebreda, Antoni; Grathwohl, Peter; Jones, Colin; Rault, Philippe Ker; Kok, Kasper; Koundouri, Phoebe; Ludwig, Ralf Peter; Merz, Ralf; Milacic, Radmila; Muñoz, Isabel; Nikulin, Grigory; Paniconi, Claudio; Paunović, Momir; Petrovic, Mira; Sabater, Laia; Sabaterb, Sergi; Skoulikidis, Nikolaos Th.; Slob, Adriaan; Teutsch, Georg; Voulvoulis, Nikolaos; Barceló, Damià

    2015-01-01

    Water scarcity is a serious environmental problem in many European regions, and will likely increase in the near future as a consequence of increased abstraction and climate change. Water scarcity exacerbates the effects of multiple stressors, and thus results in decreased water quality. It impacts river ecosystems, threatens the services they provide, and it will force managers and policy-makers to change their current practices. The EU-FP7 project GLOBAQUA aims at identifying the prevalence, interaction and linkages between stressors, and to assess their effects on the chemical and ecological status of freshwater ecosystems in order to improve water management practice and policies. GLOBAQUA assembles a multidisciplinary team of 21 European plus 2 non-European scientific institutions, as well as water authorities and river basin managers. The project includes experts in hydrology, chemistry, biology, geomorphology, modelling, socio-economics, governance science, knowledge brokerage, and policy advocacy. GLOBAQUA studies six river basins (Ebro, Adige, Sava, Evrotas, Anglian and Souss Massa) affected by water scarcity, and aims to answer the following questions: how does water scarcity interact with other existing stressors in the study river basins? How will these interactions change according to the different scenarios of future global change? Which will be the foreseeable consequences for river ecosystems? How will these in turn affect the services the ecosystems provide? How should management and policies be adapted to minimise the ecological, economic and societal consequences? These questions will be approached by combining data-mining, field- and laboratory-based research, and modelling. Here, we outline the general structure of the project and the activities to be conducted within the fourteen work-packages of GLOBAQUA. PMID:25005236

  4. Effects of municipal wastewater on aquatic ecosystem structure and function in the receiving stream.

    PubMed

    Englert, Dominic; Zubrod, Jochen P; Schulz, Ralf; Bundschuh, Mirco

    2013-06-01

    During recent years, increasing incidences of summer droughts - likely driven by climate change - reduced the dilution potential of low-order streams for secondary treated wastewater also in temperate Europe. Despite the potential risks to ecosystem integrity, there is a paucity of knowledge regarding the effects of different wastewater dilution potentials on ecosystem functions. The present study investigated the implications of secondary treated wastewater released into a third-order stream (Queich, southwest Germany) during a season with low dilution potential (summer; ~90% wastewater) as compared to a season with high dilution potential (winter; ~35% wastewater) in terms of leaf litter decomposition and macroinvertebrate communities. Adverse effects in macroinvertebrate mediated leaf mass loss (~65%), gammarids' feeding rate (~80%), leaf associated fungal biomass (>40%) and shifts in macroinvertebrate community structure were apparent up to 100 and 300 m (partially 500 m) downstream of the wastewater treatment plant effluent during winter and summer, respectively. In addition, a Gammarus fossarum laboratory feeding trial demonstrated the potential of powdered activated carbon to reduce the ecotoxicity of released wastewater. These results urge the development and evaluation of adequate management strategies, e.g. the application of advanced wastewater treatment technologies, to protect the integrity of freshwater ecosystems, which is required by the European Water Framework Directive - also considering decreasing dilution potential of streams as projected by climate change scenarios.

  5. Heavy metal in water and aquatic organisms from different intertidal ecosystems, Persian Gulf.

    PubMed

    Rahmanpour, Shirin; Ghorghani, Nasrin Farzaneh; Lotfi Ashtiyani, Seyede Masoumeh

    2014-09-01

    Intertidal ecosystems are being damaged by anthropogenic activities, particularly in the developing countries. In this study, the load of heavy metals was determined in water, fish, shrimp, and crab collected from four intertidal ecosystems, including coral reef, rocky shore, mangrove forest, and muddy habitat along the Persian Gulf coasts. Generally, the sequence of metal accumulation in the water of coral reef and mangrove forest was Ni > Pb > V > Cd > As > Hg, whereas in muddy habitats and rocky shores, the sequence was Ni > Pb > V > Cd > Hg > As and Ni > V > Pb > As > Hg > Cd, respectively. Water of the coral reef had the highest level of Ni (97.44 μg l(-1)), Pb (3.92 μg l(-1)), V (10.42 μg l(-1)), Cd (3.92 μg l(-1)), As (1.87 μg l(-1)), and Hg (0.74 μg l(-1)). For the most part, the highest concentrations of the studied metals were found in the liver and the gills of Johnius belangerii and the hepatopancreas of Portunus pelagicus and Metapenaus affinis collected from the coral reef ecosystem.

  6. Processes influencing chemical biomagnification and trophic magnification factors in aquatic ecosystems: Implications for chemical hazard and risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Mackay, Donald; Celsie, Alena K D; Arnot, Jon A; Powell, David E

    2016-07-01

    Bioconcentration factors (BCFs) and bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) are widely used in scientific and regulatory programs to assess chemical hazards. There is increasing interest in also using biomagnification factors (BMFs) and trophic magnification factors (TMFs) for this purpose, especially for highly hydrophobic substances that may reach high concentrations in predatory species that occupy high trophic level positions in ecosystems. Measurements of TMFs in specific ecosystems can provide invaluable confirmation that biomagnification or biodilution has occurred across food webs, but their use in a regulatory context can be controversial because of uncertainties related to the reliability of measurements and their regulatory interpretation. The objective of this study is to explore some of the recognized uncertainties and dependencies in field BMFs and TMFs. This is accomplished by compiling a set of three simple food web models (pelagic, demersal and combined pelagic-demersal) consisting of up to seven species to simulate field BMFs and TMFs and to explore their dependences on hydrophobicity (expressed as log KOW), rates of biotransformation and growth, sediment-water fugacity ratios, and extent of food web omnivory and issues that arise when chemical concentration gradients exist in aquatic ecosystems. It is shown that empirical TMFs can be highly sensitive to these factors, thus the use of TMFs in a regulatory context must recognize these sensitivities. It is suggested that simple but realistic evaluative food web models could be used to extend BCF and BAF assessments to include BMFs and TMFs, thus providing a tool to address bioaccumulation hazard and the potential risk of exposures to elevated chemical concentrations in organisms at high trophic levels.

  7. Distribution and bioavailability of ceria nanoparticles in an aquatic ecosystem model.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Peng; He, Xiao; Ma, Yuhui; Lu, Kai; Zhao, Yuliang; Zhang, Zhiyong

    2012-10-01

    Along with the increasing utilization of engineered nanoparticles, there is a growing concern for the potential environmental and health effects of exposure to these newly designed materials. Understanding the behavior of nanoparticles in the environment is a basic need. The present study aims to investigate the distribution and fate of ceria nanoparticles in an aquatic system model which consists of sediments, water, hornworts, fish and snails, using a radiotracer technique. Concentrations of ceria in the samples at regular time intervals were measured. Ceria nanoparticles were readily removed from the water column and partitioned between different organisms. Both snail and fish have fast absorption and clearance abilities. Hornwort has the highest bioaccumulation factors. At the end of the experiment, sediments accumulated most of the nanoparticles with a recovery of 75.7 ± 27.3% of total ceria nanoparticles, suggesting that sediments are major sinks of ceria nanoparticles.

  8. Cyanobacteria and Cyanotoxins: From Impacts on Aquatic Ecosystems and Human Health to Anticarcinogenic Effects

    PubMed Central

    Zanchett, Giliane; Oliveira-Filho, Eduardo C.

    2013-01-01

    Cyanobacteria or blue-green algae are among the pioneer organisms of planet Earth. They developed an efficient photosynthetic capacity and played a significant role in the evolution of the early atmosphere. Essential for the development and evolution of species, they proliferate easily in aquatic environments, primarily due to human activities. Eutrophic environments are conducive to the appearance of cyanobacterial blooms that not only affect water quality, but also produce highly toxic metabolites. Poisoning and serious chronic effects in humans, such as cancer, have been described. On the other hand, many cyanobacterial genera have been studied for their toxins with anticancer potential in human cell lines, generating promising results for future research toward controlling human adenocarcinomas. This review presents the knowledge that has evolved on the topic of toxins produced by cyanobacteria, ranging from their negative impacts to their benefits. PMID:24152991

  9. Is the chronic Tier-1 effect assessment approach for insecticides protective for aquatic ecosystems?

    PubMed

    Brock, Theo Cm; Bhatta, Ranjana; van Wijngaarden, René Pa; Rico, Andreu

    2016-10-01

    We investigated the appropriateness of several methods, including those recommended in the Aquatic Guidance Document of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), for the derivation of chronic Tier-1 regulatory acceptable concentrations (RACs) for insecticides and aquatic organisms. The insecticides represented different chemical classes (organophosphates, pyrethroids, benzoylureas, insect growth regulators, biopesticides, carbamates, neonicotinoids, and miscellaneous). Chronic Tier-1 RACs derived using toxicity data for the standard species Daphnia magna, Chironomus spp., and/or Americamysis bahia, were compared with Tier-3 RACs derived from micro- and mesocosm studies on basis of the ecological threshold option (ETO-RACs). ETO-RACs could be derived for 31 insecticides applied to micro- and mesocosms in single or multiple applications, yielding a total number of 36 cases for comparison. The chronic Tier-1 RACs calculated according to the EFSA approach resulted in a sufficient protection level, except for 1 neonicotinoid (slightly underprotective) and for several pyrethroids if toxicity data for A. bahia were not included. This latter observation can be explained by 1) the fact that A. bahia is the most sensitive standard test species for pyrethroids, 2) the hydrophobic properties of pyrethroids, and 3) the fact that long-term effects observed in (epi) benthic arthropods may be better explained by exposure via the sediment than via overlying water. Besides including toxicity data for A. bahia, the protection level for pyrethroids can be improved by selecting both D. magna and Chironomus spp. as standard test species for chronic Tier-1 derivation. Although protective in the majority of cases, the conservativeness of the recommended chronic Tier-1 RACs appears to be less than an order of magnitude for a relatively large proportion of insecticides when compared with their Tier-3 ETO-RACs. This may leave limited options for refinement of the chronic effect assessment

  10. Radiological bioconcentration factors for aquatic, terrestrial, and wetland ecosystems at the Savannah River Site

    SciTech Connect

    Cummins, C.L.

    1994-09-01

    As a result of operations at the Savannah River Site (SRS), over 50 radionuclides have been released to the atmosphere and to onsite streams and seepage basins. Now, many of these radionuclides are available to aquatic and/or terrestrial organisms for uptake and cycling through the food chain. Knowledge about the uptake and cycling of these radionuclides is now crucial in evaluating waste management and clean-up alternatives for the site. Numerous studies have been conducted at the SRS over the past forty years to study the uptake and distribution of radionuclides in the Savannah River Site environment. In many instances, bioconcentration factors have been calculated to quantify the uptake of a radionuclide by an organism from the surrounding medium (i.e., soil or water). In the past, it has been common practice to use bioconcentration factors from the literature because site-specific data were not readily available. However, because of the variability of bioconcentration factors due to experimental or environmental conditions, site-specific data should be used when available. This report compiles and summarizes site-specific bioconcentration factors for selected radionuclides released at the Savannah River Site (SRS). An extensive literature search yielded site-specific bioconcentration factors for cesium, strontium, cobalt, plutonium, americium, curium, and tritium. These eight radionuclides have been the primary radionuclides studied at SRS because of their long half lives or because they are major contributors to radiological dose from exposure. For most radionuclides, it was determined that the site-specific bioconcentration factors were higher than those reported in literature. This report also summarizes some conditions that affect radionuclide bioavailability to and bioconcentration by aquatic and terrestrial organisms.

  11. Water treatment by aquatic ecosystem: Nutrient removal by reservoirs and flooded fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy, K. R.; Sacco, P. D.; Graetz, D. A.; Campbell, K. L.; Sinclair, L. R.

    1982-05-01

    Potential use of reservoirs and flooded fields stocked with aquatic plants for reduction of the nutrient levels of organic soil drainage water was evaluated. The treatment systems include 1) a large single reservoir (R1) stocked with waterhyacinth ( Eichhornia crassipes), elodea ( Egeria densa), and cattails ( Typha sp.) in series; 2) three small reservoirs in series with waterhyacinth (R2), elodea (R3), and cattails (R4), grown in independent reservoirs; 3) a control reservoir (R5) with no cultivated plants; 4) a large single flooded field planted to cattails; 5) three small flooded fields in a series planted to cattails; and 6) a flooded field with no cultivated plants. Drainage water was pumped daily (6 hours a day, and 6 days a week) into these systems for a period of 27 months at predetermined constant flow rates. Water samples were collected at the inlet and outlet of each treatment system and analyzed for N and P forms. The series of reservoirs stocked with aquatic plants functioned effectively in the removal of N and P from agricultural drainage water, compared to a single large reservoir. Allowing the water to flow through the reservoir stocked with waterhyacinth plants with a residence time of 3.6 days was adequate to remove about 50% of the incoming inorganic N. Allowing the water to flow through a series of two small reservoirs, R2 and R3, with a residence time of 7.3 days was necessary to remove about 60% of the incoming ortho-P. Flooded fields were effective in the removal of inorganic N, but showed poor efficiency in the removal of ortho-P.

  12. Changing seasonality of Arctic hydrology disrupts key biotic linkages in Arctic aquatic ecosystems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deegan, L.; MacKenzie, C.; Peterson, B. J.; Fishscape Project

    2011-12-01

    Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) is an important circumpolar species that provide a model system for understanding the impacts of changing seasonality on arctic ecosystem function. Grayling serve as food for other biota, including lake trout, birds and humans, and act as top-down controls in stream ecosystems. In Arctic tundra streams, grayling spend their summers in streams but are obligated to move back into deep overwintering lakes in the fall. Climatic change that affects the seasonality of river hydrology could have a significant impact on grayling populations: grayling may leave overwintering lakes sooner in the spring and return later in the fall due to a longer open water season, but the migration could be disrupted by drought due to increased variability in discharge. In turn, a shorter overwintering season may impact lake trout dynamics in the lakes, which may rely on the seasonal inputs of stream nutrients in the form of migrating grayling into these oligotrophic lakes. To assess how shifting seasonality of Arctic river hydrology may disrupt key trophic linkages within and between lake and stream components of watersheds on the North Slope of the Brooks Mountain Range, Alaska, we have undertaken new work on grayling and lake trout population and food web dynamics. We use Passive Integrated Transponder (PIT) tags coupled with stream-width antenna units to monitor grayling movement across Arctic tundra watersheds during the summer, and into overwintering habitat in the fall. Results indicate that day length may prime grayling migration readiness, but that flooding events are likely the cue grayling use to initiate migration in to overwintering lakes. Many fish used high discharge events in the stream as an opportunity to move into lakes. Stream and lake derived stable isotopes also indicate that lake trout rely on these seasonally transported inputs of stream nutrients for growth. Thus, changes in the seasonality of river hydrology may have broader

  13. Derivation of site-specific surface water quality criteria for the protection of aquatic ecosystems near a Korean military training facility.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Seung-Woo; An, Youn-Joo

    2014-01-01

    This study suggested the first Korean site-specific ecological surface water quality criteria for the protection of ecosystems near an artillery range at a Korean military training facility. Surface water quality (SWQ) criteria in Korea address human health protection but do not encompass ecological criteria such as limits for metals and explosives. The first objective of this study was to derive site-specific SWQ criteria for the protection of aquatic ecosystems in Hantan River, Korea. The second objective was to establish discharge criteria for the artillery range to protect the aquatic ecosystems of Hantan River. In this study, we first identified aquatic organisms living in the Hantan River, including fishes, reptiles, invertebrates, phytoplankton, zooplankton, and amphibians. Second, we collected ecotoxicity data for these aquatic organisms and constructed an ecotoxicity database for Cd, Cu, Zn, TNT, and RDX. This study determined the ecological maximum permissible concentrations for metals and explosives based on the ecotoxicity database and suggested ecological surface water quality criteria for the Hantan River by considering analytical detection limits. Discharge limit criteria for the shooting range were determined based on the ecological surface water quality criteria suggested for Hantan River with further consideration of the dilution of the contaminants discharged into the river.

  14. Toxicological assessment of aquatic ecosystems: application to watercraft contaminants in shallow water environments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Winger, P.V.; Kemmish, Michael J.

    2002-01-01

    Recreational boating and personal watercraft use have the potential to adversely impact shallow water systems through contaminant release and physical disturbance of bottom sediments. These nearshore areas are often already degraded by surface runoff, municipal and industrial effluents, and other anthropogenic activities. For proper management, information is needed on the level of contamination and environmental quality of these systems. A number of field and laboratory procedures can be used to provide this much needed information. Contaminants, such as metals, pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, entering aquatic environments generally attach to particulate matter that eventually settles and becomes incorporated into the bottom sediments. Because bottom sediments serve as a sink and as a source for contaminants, environmental assessments generally focus on this matrix. While contaminant residues in sediments and sediment pore waters can reflect environmental quality, characteristics of sediment (redox potential, sediment/pore-water chemistry, acid volatile sulfides, percent organic matter, and sediment particle size) influence their bioavailability and make interpretation of environmental significance difficult. Comparisons of contaminant concentrations in pore water (interstitial water) and sediment with water quality criteria and sediment quality guidelines, respectively, can provide insight into potential biological effects. Laboratory bioaccumulation studies and residue concentrations in resident or caged biota also yield information on potential biological impacts. The usefulness of these measurements may increase as data are developed relating in-situ concentrations, tissue residue levels, and biological responses. Exposure of test organisms in situ or to field-collected sediment and pore water are additional procedures that can be used to assess the biological effects of contaminants. A battery of tests using multi

  15. C.E.B.A.S. mini module: Test results of an artificial (man-made) aquatic ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blüm, V.; Kreuzberg, K.; Stretzke, E.

    1994-11-01

    The original Closed Equilibrated Biological Aquatic System (C.E.B.A.S.) is a long-term multi-generation research facility for experiments with aquatic animals and plants in a space station the development of which is surrounded by a large international scientific program. In addition, a miniaturized laboratory prototype, the C.E.B.A.S. MINI MODULE, with a total volume of about 10 - 12 liters for a Spacelab middeck locker was developed and a first version was tested successfully for two weeks with a population of fishes (Xiphophorus helleri) in the animal tank and a Ceratophyllum spec. in the illuminated higher plant growth chamber. The water recycling system consisted of a bacteria filter and a mechanical filter and the silastic tubing gas exchanger was separated by valves for the utilization in emergency cases only. Data were collected with the acquisition module of the original C.E.B.A.S. process control system. In addition, an optimized version was tested for 7 weeks with fishes and plants and thereafter with fish and with plants only for 2 and 1 weeks, resp.. The paper presents the relevant water parameters (e. g., pH, pressure, temperature, oxygen saturation, flow rate, ion concentrations) during the test period as well as morphological and physiological data of the enclosed animals and plants. On the basis of the given results the possible role of the C.E.B.A.S. system as a scientific tool in artificial ecosystem research and for the development of a combined animal-plant intensive aquaculture system and its utilization in bioregenerative life support is discussed.

  16. Environmental control of diatom community size structure varies across aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Finkel, Zoe V; Vaillancourt, Colin Jacob; Irwin, Andrew J; Reavie, Euan D; Smol, John P

    2009-05-07

    Changes in the size structure of photoautotrophs influence food web structure and the biogeochemical cycling of carbon. Decreases in the median size of diatoms within communities, in concert with climate warming and water column stratification, have been observed over the Cenozoic in the ocean and over the last 50 years in Lake Tahoe. Decreases in the proportion of larger plankton are frequently observed in response to reduced concentrations of limiting nutrients in marine systems and large stratified lakes. By contrast, we show a decrease in the median size of planktonic diatoms in response to higher nutrient concentrations in a set of intermediate-sized alkaline lakes. Climate-induced increases in the frequency, duration and strength of water column stratification may select smaller planktonic species in the ocean and larger lakes owing to a reduction in nutrient availability and sinking rates, while light limitation, stimulated by nutrient eutrophication and high chlorophyll concentrations, may select smaller species within a community owing to their high light absorption efficiencies and lower sinking rates. The relative importance of different physiological and ecological rates and processes on the size structure of communities varies in different aquatic systems owing to varying combinations of abiotic and biotic constraints.

  17. Environmental control of diatom community size structure varies across aquatic ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Finkel, Zoe V.; Vaillancourt, Colin Jacob; Irwin, Andrew J.; Reavie, Euan D.; Smol, John P.

    2009-01-01

    Changes in the size structure of photoautotrophs influence food web structure and the biogeochemical cycling of carbon. Decreases in the median size of diatoms within communities, in concert with climate warming and water column stratification, have been observed over the Cenozoic in the ocean and over the last 50 years in Lake Tahoe. Decreases in the proportion of larger plankton are frequently observed in response to reduced concentrations of limiting nutrients in marine systems and large stratified lakes. By contrast, we show a decrease in the median size of planktonic diatoms in response to higher nutrient concentrations in a set of intermediate-sized alkaline lakes. Climate-induced increases in the frequency, duration and strength of water column stratification may select smaller planktonic species in the ocean and larger lakes owing to a reduction in nutrient availability and sinking rates, while light limitation, stimulated by nutrient eutrophication and high chlorophyll concentrations, may select smaller species within a community owing to their high light absorption efficiencies and lower sinking rates. The relative importance of different physiological and ecological rates and processes on the size structure of communities varies in different aquatic systems owing to varying combinations of abiotic and biotic constraints. PMID:19203916

  18. The Economic Value of the Greater Montreal Blue Network (Quebec, Canada): A Contingent Choice Study Using Real Projects to Estimate Non-Market Aquatic Ecosystem Services Benefits

    PubMed Central

    Dupras, Jérôme; Fetue Ndefo, Franck; He, Jie

    2016-01-01

    This study used a contingent choice method to determine the economic value of improving various ecosystem services (ESs) of the Blue Network of Greater Montreal (Quebec, Canada). Three real projects were used and the evaluation focused on six ESs that are related to freshwater aquatic ecosystems: biodiversity, water quality, carbon sequestration, recreational activities, landscape aesthetics and education services. We also estimated the value associated with the superficies of restored sites. We calculated the monetary value that a household would be willing to pay for each additional qualitative or quantitative unit of different ESs, and these marginal values range from $0.11 to $15.39 per household per unit. Thus, under certain assumptions, we determined the monetary values that all Quebec households would allocate to improve each ES in Greater Montreal by one unit. The most valued ES was water quality ($13.5 million), followed by education services ($10.7 million), recreational activities ($8.9 million), landscape aesthetics ($4.1 million), biodiversity ($1.2 million), and carbon sequestration ($0.1 million). Our results ascribe monetary values to improved (or degraded) aquatic ecosystems in the Blue Network of Greater Montreal, but can also enhance economic analyses of various aquatic ecosystem restoration and management projects. PMID:27513558

  19. The Economic Value of the Greater Montreal Blue Network (Quebec, Canada): A Contingent Choice Study Using Real Projects to Estimate Non-Market Aquatic Ecosystem Services Benefits.

    PubMed

    Poder, Thomas G; Dupras, Jérôme; Fetue Ndefo, Franck; He, Jie

    2016-01-01

    This study used a contingent choice method to determine the economic value of improving various ecosystem services (ESs) of the Blue Network of Greater Montreal (Quebec, Canada). Three real projects were used and the evaluation focused on six ESs that are related to freshwater aquatic ecosystems: biodiversity, water quality, carbon sequestration, recreational activities, landscape aesthetics and education services. We also estimated the value associated with the superficies of restored sites. We calculated the monetary value that a household would be willing to pay for each additional qualitative or quantitative unit of different ESs, and these marginal values range from $0.11 to $15.39 per household per unit. Thus, under certain assumptions, we determined the monetary values that all Quebec households would allocate to improve each ES in Greater Montreal by one unit. The most valued ES was water quality ($13.5 million), followed by education services ($10.7 million), recreational activities ($8.9 million), landscape aesthetics ($4.1 million), biodiversity ($1.2 million), and carbon sequestration ($0.1 million). Our results ascribe monetary values to improved (or degraded) aquatic ecosystems in the Blue Network of Greater Montreal, but can also enhance economic analyses of various aquatic ecosystem restoration and management projects.

  20. Multiple Processes and Multiple Parameters: Applications of In Situ UV Spectroscopy for Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, M. J.; Hensley, R. T.; Reijo, C. J.; Heffernan, J. B.; Thomas, R. G.; Korhnak, L. V.

    2012-12-01

    Modern sensors afford new temporal and spatial scales of environmental measurements, providing novel insights into processes that govern earth surface and ecosystem dynamics. Recent advances from deploying in situ sensors include inference of reach-scale stoichiometric coupling (C:N:P) of whole-ecosystem metabolism, finely detailed resolution of the behavior of multiple solutes during storm events and snow-melt, and spatial and process disaggregation of nitrogen removal in rivers. These particular process inferences are predicated on in situ UV spectrometers that, to date, have been used principally to provide high quality temporally-dense measurements of nitrate. Here we focus on additional inferences, still largely exploratory, of ecosystem processes that are made possible in parallel with these same sensors. We focus on UV sensors capable of measuring absorbance from the entire UV spectrum at relatively high spectral resolution (ca. 1 nm), and we discuss three new applications. First, we explore the use of UV spectra for inferring information about the quality and quantity of dissolved organic matter. Diel and event driven variation in wavelength-specific absorbance and metrics like spectral slope in the 350-400 nm range (an indicator of aromaticity) illustrate that important inferences relevant to riverine organic matter cycling can be obtained during passive deployments. Second, we present preliminary data to support the use of these sensors for injected solute experiments. Since both nitrate and bromide absorb in the deep UV, these sensors can be used to estimate concentrations of both during co-injection dosing. We present protocols and data from two such deployments, one in a lotic system and another in a wetland where we use high-resolution time series of measured concentrations to draw inference about N retention kinetics. Finally, we present new data from two-station deployments to obtain spatially compact reach scale measurements of N retention

  1. Isotope tracing of Hg pollution from artisanal small scale gold mining in an aquatic ecosystem of Amapá, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adler Miserendino, R.; Silbergeld, E. K.; Guimarães, J. D.; Ghosh, S.; Bergquist, B. A.

    2010-12-01

    Artisinal small scale gold mining (ASGM) is a central economic activity throughout the developing world. It is both a poverty driven and poverty alleviating process; however, ASGM leads to extensive pollution of waterways through the use of Hg to extract gold from deposits. There have been many studies conducted in the Amazon showing elevated levels of Hg in fish and sediment downstream of ASGM sites; however, the debate continues about the contribution of Hg from ASGM versus other potential sources of Hg. In this study, we investigate whether Hg stable isotope analysis can be used to trace mercury pollution from an ASGM site through an aquatic ecosystem in Amapá, Brazil. We measured the Hg isotopic composition of sediment cores from two lakes, only one of which was heavily impacted by the use of elemental Hg in ASGM, as well as from grab samples at the AGSM site and upstream and downstream from the AGSM site along the river which connects the polluted lake to the ASGM site. Hg from all samples were trapped via combustion using the Leeman Labs Hydra-C mercury analyzer and analyzed for both mass-independent and mass-dependent signatures using cold vapor multi-collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (CV-MC-ICP-MS). Detectable variations in the Hg isotopic signatures were apparent across our field sites, suggesting stable isotopic analysis has great potential to trace contamination pathways in waterways. Preliminary data demonstrate Hg from the ASGM site has unique isotopic signatures that are seen downstream. However, the impacted lake sediments do not have the mining signature despite having three times more Hg than the non-impacted lake. Based on this data, it may be possible to trace Hg from ASGM and assess whether it is impacting local ecosystems and food webs. Hair and soil samples will also be discussed. This demonstration is essential for the broader application of these tools for understanding and applying Hg isotopic analysis in other

  2. Effect of dumping and cleaning activities on the aquatic ecosystems of the Guadiamar River following a toxic flood.

    PubMed

    Prat, N; Toja, J; Solà, C; Burgos, M D; Plans, M; Rieradevall, M

    1999-12-06

    The main aim of the study was to document the recovery of the aquatic ecosystem after the release of toxic mining waste in the Guadiamar River Basin (Sevilla, SW Spain) in April 1998. Samples of water, plankton, periphyton and macroinvertebrates were taken once a month at nine sampling stations (six affected by the toxic release and three for control). Water hardness and pH recovered in a few weeks and did not change significantly thereafter in the river or in the marsh stations. Only the Agrio River (the tributary that received the initial waste dump) had a low pH (3-5) throughout the study period. High ammonia contents (up to 300 microM) were measured at two sampling stations due to sewage and oil mill pollution. Eutrophication was also common at most of the stations, including one reference site. The planktonic community did not differ substantially between reference and affected stations. On all occasions the small phytoplankton and zooplankton (rotifers) were dominant. Compared with the reference station, chlorophyll a in the riverine area increased, especially in the sewage-affected stations, while in the marsh area, no significant differences were found between affected and reference stations. After 6 months of cleaning operations, in November 1998 the macroinvertebrate community of the river was composed mainly of species of short life cycles typical of ponds (Heteroptera, Coleoptera and Odonata), while typical riverine species found at the upstream control station had not recolonized the river due to the transformation of the river into a series of artificial ponds constructed as sediment traps. An analysis of variance showed significantly higher values (P < 0.05) for all heavy metals analysed (Zn, Cu, Pb, As, Cd, Sb, Tl) in plankton and macroinvertebrate communities from impacted sites. Values found in invertebrates were highly variable, with a mean concentration of the most abundant metals, Zn and Cu, between two and three times those found in unpolluted

  3. The use of bioluminescent biotests for study of natural and laboratory aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Kratasyuk, V A; Esimbekova, E N; Gladyshev, M I; Khromichek, E B; Kuznetsov, A M; Ivanova, E A

    2001-03-01

    A set of bioluminescent tests was developed to monitor water quality in natural and laboratory ecosystems. It consisted of four bioluminescent systems: luminous bacteria, coupled enzyme system NADH:FMN-oxidoreductase-luciferase and triplet enzyme systems with alcohol dehydrogenase and trypsin. The set of biotests was applied for a small forest pond (Siberia, Russia), laboratory microecosystems polluted with benzoquinone and a batch culture of blue-green algae. Thereby effects of natural water compared to those of models of heavy pollution and "bloom" of blue-greens on the bioluminescent tests were revealed. The set of biotests was not affected by a natural seasonal variability of water quality in the unpolluted pond, but responded to the heavy pollution and the "bloom" of blue-greens. The set of biotests could be recommended as the alarm test to control the acute toxicity of natural water bodies.

  4. A comprehensive assessment of aquatic ecosystem quality: The role of sediments

    SciTech Connect

    Burton, G.A. Jr.; Rowland, C.; Monzingo, R.

    1995-12-31

    A comprehensive multi-level ecosystem was conducted on 55 miles of the upper Illinois waterway. A sub-component of this assessment included measures of sediment contamination. A species sensitivity comparison of Pimephales promelas, Hyalella azteca and Chironomus tentans whole sediment exposures showed C. tentans to be the most sensitive species. Acute to chronic level toxicity was observed throughout the waterway, and was greatest in high deposition areas and at the mouth of tributaries to the main channel. Toxicity responses were significantly correlated with several parameters, including ammonia, particle size, total volatile solids, chromium, zinc, and fluorene. Ammonia concentrations were related to several synthetic organic compounds, moisture, silt, and TVS. Follow-up Toxicity Identification Evaluations showed ammonia to dominate toxicity at one key location with some effects from photoinduced toxicity (implicating polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons). Contaminated sediments appear to be a major stressor in this system.

  5. Interactive effects of phosphorus and copper on Hyalella azteca via periphyton in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Li, Miling; Costello, David M; Burton, G Allen

    2012-09-01

    This research examined the interaction between dissolved copper and phosphorus, with respect to their effects on the freshwater amphipod Hyalella azteca feeding on periphyton. Field-collected periphyton communities were exposed to different nutrient and metal conditions in indoor recirculating streams. H. azteca were then exposed to water and periphyton from these streams. There was rapid Cu accumulation by periphyton but the total Cu concentration of periphyton was not directly related to dissolved P. In terms of H. azteca growth, an interactive effect was found between Cu and P as growth was reduced more than expected in the low Cu-high P treatment. Our data suggest that eutrophic conditions result in greater Cu toxicity to benthic macroinvertebrates at lower metal concentrations, likely due to higher assimilation efficiency of dietary Cu from periphyton incubated under eutrophic conditions. These results imply that non-additive interactions between multiple stressors may cause ecosystem effects as detected in standard laboratory bioassays conducted under controlled conditions.

  6. Comparison of Carbon Sequestration Rates and Energy Balance of Turf in the Denver Urban Ecosystem and an Adjacent Native Grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thienelt, T. S.; Anderson, D. E.; Powell, K. M.

    2011-12-01

    Urban ecosystems are currently characterized by rapid growth, are expected to continually expand and, thus, represent an important driver of land use change. A significant component of urban ecosystems is lawns, potentially the single largest irrigated "crop" in the U.S. Beginning in March of 2011 (ahead of the growing season), eddy covariance measurements of net carbon exchange and evapotranspiration along with energy balance fluxes were conducted for a well-watered, fertilized lawn (rye-bluegrass-mix) in metropolitan Denver and for a nearby tallgrass prairie (big bluestem, switchgrass, cheatgrass, blue grama). Due to the semi-arid climate conditions of the Denver region, differences in management (i.e., irrigation and fertilization) are expected to have a discernible impact on ecosystem productivity and thus on carbon sequestration rates, evapotranspiration, and the sensible and latent heat partitioning of the energy balance. By mid-July, preliminary data indicated that cumulative evapotranspiration was approximately 270 mm and 170 mm for urban and native grasslands, respectively, although cumulative carbon sequestration at that time was similar for both (approximately 40 mg/m2). However, the pattern of carbon exchange differed between the grasslands. Both sites showed daily net uptake of carbon starting in late May, but the urban lawn displayed greater diurnal variability as well as greater uptake rates in general, especially following fertilization in mid-June. In contrast, the trend of carbon uptake at the prairie site was occasionally reversed following strong convective precipitation events, resulting in a temporary net release of carbon. The continuing acquisition of data and investigation of these relations will help us assess the potential impact of urban growth on regional carbon sequestration.

  7. Polonium, uranium and plutonium radionuclides in aquatic and land ecosystem of Poland.

    PubMed

    Skwarzec, Bogdan; Strumińska-Parulska, Dagmara I; Boryło, Alicja; Kabat, Krzysztof

    2012-01-01

    This article presents the results of study about distribution, inflow and accumulation of polonium, uranium and plutonium in aquatic and land environment of Poland and the southern Baltic Sea. Radionuclides of (210)Po, (234)U and (238)U as well as (239+240)Pu and (241)Pu are strongly accumulated in Baltic organisms and plants and transferred through the trophic chain. The values of bioconcentration factor (BCF) in Baltic plants and animals are higher for polonium and plutonium in comparison with uranium. The principal source of radionuclides in the southern Baltic Sea is their inflow with rivers. Total annual runoff of polonium, uranium and plutonium from the Vistula and the Odra as well as the Pomeranian rivers were calculated at 95 GBq of (210)Po, 750 GBq of (234+238)U and 160 MBq of (238+239+240)Pu. Seasonal and spatial variability of (210)Po, (238)U and (239+240)Pu levels in the Vistula and the Odra drainage basins were assessed by application of neural-network based classification, especially cluster analysis (CA), principal component analysis (PCA) and self-organizing maps (SOM). The result for the Vistula river indicated correlation between polonium and plutonium as well as polonium and uranium. In the Odra drainage basin, the biggest differences were observed in the case of (238)U. To assess if there are statistically significant differences in mean concentration values of (210)Po, (238)U and (239+240)Pu for the Vistula and the Odra rivers drainage basins were obtained by used of the non-parametric tests. Comparing to the Vistula catchment area, statistically differences concentration of (210)Po and (239+240)Pu in all year was observed for river samples collected on the Odra drainage basin.

  8. The role of biogenic Fe-Mn oxides formed in situ for arsenic oxidation and adsorption in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Bai, Yaohui; Yang, Tingting; Liang, Jinsong; Qu, Jiuhui

    2016-07-01

    As(III&V), Mn(II), and Fe(II) may occur simultaneously in some groundwater and surface water. Studying their redox reactions and interactions is essential to unravel the biogeochemical cycles of these metal ions in aquatic ecosystems and to find effective methods to remove them simultaneously in drinking water treatment. Here, the formation of biogenic Fe-Mn oxides (BFMO, defined as a mixture of biogenic Mn oxide (BMO) and Fe oxide) as well as its oxidation and adsorption of As in a Fe(II)-Mn(II)-As(III&V)-Mn-oxidizing microbe (Pseudomonas sp. QJX-1) system were investigated. Batch experiments and structure characterization revealed that the BFMO was formed via a sequential precipitation of Fe oxide and BMO. The first formed Fe oxide was identified as FeOOH (lepidocrocite) and the latter formed BMO was identified as MnO2 (similar to hexagonal birnessite). In the BFMO mixture, the BMO part was mainly responsible for As(III) oxidation, and the Fe oxide part dominated As adsorption. Remarkably, the BMO could oxidize Fe(II) to form FeOOH, which may improve As adsorption. The optimum Mn(II)/Fe(II) ratio for As removal was approximately 1:3 (mol/mol). Taken together, in Fe(II)-Mn(II)-As(III&V)-Mn-oxidizing microbe ecosystems, the in situ formation of BFMO could eliminate or decrease Fe(II), Mn(II), and As(III&V) species simultaneously. Therefore, based on this study, new approaches may be developed for As removal from water containing high concentrations of Fe(II) and Mn(II).

  9. Comparing net ecosystem carbon dioxide exchange at adjacent commercial bioenergy and conventional cropping systems in Lincolnshire, United Kingdom

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrison, Ross; Brooks, Milo; Evans, Jonathan; Finch, Jon; Rowe, Rebecca; Rylett, Daniel; McNamara, Niall

    2016-04-01

    The conversion of agricultural land to bioenergy plantations represents one option in the national and global effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions whilst meeting future energy demand. Despite an increase in the area of (e.g. perennial) bioenergy crops in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, the biophysical and biogeochemical impacts of large scale conversion of arable and other land cover types to bioenergy cropping systems remain poorly characterised and uncertain. Here, the results of four years of eddy covariance (EC) flux measurements of net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) obtained at a commercial farm in Lincolnshire, United Kingdom (UK) are reported. CO2 flux measurements are presented and compared for arable crops (winter wheat, oilseed rape, spring barely) and plantations of the perennial biofuel crops Miscanthus x. giganteus (C4) and short rotation coppice (SRC) willow (Salix sp.,C3). Ecosystem light and temperature response functions were used to analyse and compare temporal trends and spatial variations in NEE across the three land covers. All three crops were net in situ sinks for atmospheric CO2 but were characterised by large temporal and between site variability in NEE. Environmental and biological controls driving the spatial and temporal variations in CO2 exchange processes, as well as the influences of land management, will be analysed and discussed.

  10. Oyster Shell Dredging in Atchafalaya Bay and Adjacent Waters, Louisiana. Volume 2. Public Comments.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-11-01

    Dredging in Atchafalaya Bay and Adjacent Waters, Louisiana. We appreciate the opportunity to review the DEIS. Sincerely yours, David Cottinginm Ecology ...subsequent effects on the aquatic ecosystem . General evaluation and testing procedures are outlined in the 404(b)(1) guidelines [Section 230.60 of Subpart G3...does not include zones 4-9 as integral parts of the regional ecosystem . The overall cummulative impact to the biology of the region can only be

  11. Impacts of acid emissions from Nevado del Ruiz volcano, Colombia, on selected terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parnell, Roderic A.; Burke, Kelly J.

    1990-07-01

    Emissions of acidic gases and thermal waters from Nevado del Ruiz volcano have recently increased in concert with the November 13, 1985 eruption. This study examines the downwind and downstream effects of these emissions on alpine ecosystems high on the slopes of the volcano (4100 m) and on coffee plantations at lower elevations (< 2000 m) and greater distances from the active vent (> 30 km). Samples of bulk deposition, rain, soils, soil solutions, and streams were collected over a six-month period (January-July, 1987) to examine the impacts of this volcanogenic acidity. Bulk deposition falling on the higher slopes of the volcano is usually acidified; however, deposition reaching the distal coffee plantations seldom is acidic. The sources of the acids are hydrogen chloride and sulfur dioxide in the plume of the volcano. Although sulfur dioxide is by far the more abundant gas, hydrogen chloride is most responsible for acidification of rain falling on the slopes of the volcano. With distance from the vent, the chloride/sulfate ratio drops exponentially. The only major influence on regional precipitation chemistry in addition to the volcano appears to be land-use-related activities around the coffee plantations. Deposition on these areas is enriched by an order of magnitude in nitrate and base cations, compared to all other stations. Throughfall chemistry in the coffee plantations shows a dramatic response to occasional acid-rain events. A base-leaching process on coffee plant leaves is triggered by acid rain. For each equivalent of hydrogen ion in rain on the leaf surface, over 23 equivalents of potassium ion are leached from the leaf. In spite of this dramatic response by the vegetation, the plantation soils appear relatively unaffected by acidic deposition. In contrast, the alpine soils on the volcano exhibit low pHs, high sulfate and chloride concentrations in soil solutions, and high extractable sulfate concentrations. All of these factors indicate that these

  12. Mercury in aquatic forage of large herbivores: impact of environmental conditions, assessment of health threats, and implications for transfer across ecosystem compartments.

    PubMed

    Bergman, Brenda Gail; Bump, Joseph K

    2014-05-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a leading contaminant across U.S. water bodies, warranting concern for wildlife species that depend upon food from aquatic systems. The risk of Hg toxicity to large herbivores is little understood, even though some large herbivores consume aquatic vascular plants (macrophytes) that may hyper-accumulate Hg. We investigated whether total Hg and methylmercury (MeHg) in aquatic forage may be of concern to moose (Alces alces) and beaver (Castor canadensis) by measuring total Hg and MeHg concentrations, calculating sediment-water bioconcentration factors for macrophyte species these herbivores consume, and estimating herbivore daily Hg consumption. Abiotic factors impacting macrophyte Hg were assessed, as was the difference in Hg concentrations of macrophytes from glacial lakes and those created or expanded by beaver damming. The amount of aquatic-derived Hg that moose move from aquatic to terrestrial systems was calculated, in order to investigate the potential for movement of Hg across ecosystem compartments by large herbivores. Results indicate that the Hg exposure of generalist herbivores may be affected by macrophyte community composition more so than by many abiotic factors in the aquatic environment. Mercury concentrations varied greatly between macrophyte species, with relatively high concentrations in Utricularia vulgaris (>80 ng g(-1) in some sites), and negligible concentrations in Nuphar variegata (~6 ng g(-1)). Macrophyte total Hg concentration was correlated with water pH in predictable ways, but not with other variables generally associated with aquatic Hg concentrations, such as dissolved organic carbon. Moose estimated daily consumption of MeHg is equivalent to or below human reference levels, and far below wildlife reference levels. However, estimated beaver Hg consumption exceeds reference doses for humans, indicating the potential for sub-lethal nervous impairment. In regions of high moose density, moose may be ecologically important

  13. Aquatic risk assessment of copper in freshwater and saltwater ecosystems of South Florida.

    PubMed

    Schuler, Lance J; Hoang, Tham C; Rand, Gary M

    2008-10-01

    A screening-level aquatic risk assessment was conducted for copper in south Florida's freshwater and saltwater environments. Risk was quantified by comparing the overlap between the probability distributions of copper exposure from surface water and sediment with the probability distributions of effects data obtained from laboratory studies. Copper concentrations in surface water and sediment in south Florida were summarized by county. For surface water, the highest concentrations of copper were found in Martin and St. Lucie counties for freshwater and saltwater, respectively. From the exposure probability distributions, the 90th centile values were estimated at 14.0 microg/L and 15.4 microg/L in freshwater and saltwater, respectively. Copper concentrations in sediment were evaluated from a probability distribution of predicted pore water concentrations. The 90th centile values of pore water concentrations from freshwater sediments ranged from 5.0 microg/L in Palm Beach County to 71.7 microg/L in Broward County. In saltwater sediments, the 90th centile values for pore water ranged from 26.1 microg/L in St. Lucie County to 27.3 microg/L in Miami-Dade County. Ecological effects data were obtained for acute and chronic copper effects in freshwater and saltwater. The 10th centile values for acute effects data were 21.2 microg/L and 9.8 microg/L for freshwater and saltwater species, respectively. For chronic effects, the 10th centile values were 3.8 microg/L and 3.9 microg/L for freshwater and saltwater species, respectively. The risk of acute copper exposure in surface water was generally low; however, the potential for ecological risk from chronic copper exposure was low to high in several counties including Lee, Martin, and St. Lucie counties. The risk of acute copper exposure in porewater from freshwater sediments also was low with the exception of St. Lucie and Broward counties. However, porewater from saltwater sediments posed a significant acute risk in Miami

  14. Impact of trace metals from past mining on the aquatic ecosystem: a multi-proxy approach in the Morvan (France).

    PubMed

    Camizuli, E; Monna, F; Scheifler, R; Amiotte-Suchet, P; Losno, R; Beis, P; Bohard, B; Chateau, C; Alibert, P

    2014-10-01

    This study seeks to determine to what extent trace metals resulting from past mining activities are transferred to the aquatic ecosystem, and whether such trace metals still exert deleterious effects on biota. Concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn were measured in streambed sediments, transplanted bryophytes and wild brown trout. This study was conducted at two scales: (i) the entire Morvan Regional Nature Park and (ii) three small watersheds selected for their degree of contamination, based on the presence or absence of past mining sites. The overall quality of streambed sediments was assessed using Sediment Quality Indices (SQIs). According to these standard guidelines, more than 96% of the sediments sampled should not represent a threat to biota. Nonetheless, in watersheds where past mining occurred, SQIs are significantly lower. Transplanted bryophytes at these sites consistently present higher trace metal concentrations. For wild brown trout, the scaled mass and liver indices appear to be negatively correlated with liver Pb concentrations, but there are no obvious relationships between past mining and liver metal concentrations or the developmental instability of specimens. Although the impact of past mining and metallurgical works is apparently not as strong as that usually observed in modern mining sites, it is still traceable. For this reason, past mining sites should be monitored, particularly in protected areas erroneously thought to be free of anthropogenic contamination.

  15. Food web pathway determines how selenium affects aquatic ecosystems: A San francisco Bay case study

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stewart, A.R.; Luoma, S.N.; Schlekat, C.E.; Doblin, M.A.; Hieb, K.A.

    2004-01-01

    Chemical contaminants disrupt ecosystems, but specific effects may be under-appreciated when poorly known processes such as uptake mechanisms, uptake via diet, food preferences, and food web dynamics are influential. Here we show that a combination of food web structure and the physiology of trace element accumulation explain why some species in San Francisco Bay are threatened by a relatively low level of selenium contamination and some are not. Bivalves and crustacean Zooplankton form the base of two dominant food webs in estuaries. The dominant bivalve Potamocorbula amurensis has a 10-fold slower rate constant of loss for selenium than do common crustaceans such as copepods and the mysid Neomysis mercedis (rate constant of loss, ke = 0.025, 0.155, and 0.25 d-1, respectively). The result is much higher selenium concentrations in the bivalve than in the crustaceans. Stable isotope analyses show that this difference is propagated up the respective food webs in San Francisco Bay. Several predators of bivalves have tissue concentrations of selenium that exceed thresholds thought to be associated with teratogenesis or reproductive failure (liver Se > 15 ??g g-1 dry weight). Deformities typical of selenium-induced teratogenesis were observed in one of these species. Concentrations of selenium in tissues of predators of Zooplankton are less than the thresholds. Basic physiological and ecological processes can drive wide differences in exposure and effects among species, but such processes are rarely considered in traditional evaluations of contaminant impacts.

  16. Comparisons among ten models of acoustic backscattering used in aquatic ecosystem research.

    PubMed

    Jech, J Michael; Horne, John K; Chu, Dezhang; Demer, David A; Francis, David T I; Gorska, Natalia; Jones, Benjamin; Lavery, Andone C; Stanton, Timothy K; Macaulay, Gavin J; Reeder, D Benjamin; Sawada, Kouichi

    2015-12-01

    Analytical and numerical scattering models with accompanying digital representations are used increasingly to predict acoustic backscatter by fish and zooplankton in research and ecosystem monitoring applications. Ten such models were applied to targets with simple geometric shapes and parameterized (e.g., size and material properties) to represent biological organisms such as zooplankton and fish, and their predictions of acoustic backscatter were compared to those from exact or approximate analytical models, i.e., benchmarks. These comparisons were made for a sphere, spherical shell, prolate spheroid, and finite cylinder, each with homogeneous composition. For each shape, four target boundary conditions were considered: rigid-fixed, pressure-release, gas-filled, and weakly scattering. Target strength (dB re 1 m(2)) was calculated as a function of insonifying frequency (f = 12 to 400 kHz) and angle of incidence (θ = 0° to 90°). In general, the numerical models (i.e., boundary- and finite-element) matched the benchmarks over the full range of simulation parameters. While inherent errors associated with the approximate analytical models were illustrated, so were the advantages as they are computationally efficient and in certain cases, outperformed the numerical models under conditions where the numerical models did not converge.

  17. Trace element accumulation and trophic relationships in aquatic organisms of the Sundarbans mangrove ecosystem (Bangladesh).

    PubMed

    Borrell, Asunción; Tornero, Victoria; Bhattacharjee, Dola; Aguilar, Alex

    2016-03-01

    The Sundarbans forest is the largest and one of the most diverse and productive mangrove ecosystems in the world. Located at the northern shoreline of the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean and straddling India and Bangladesh, the mangrove forest is the result of three primary river systems that originate further north and northwest. During recent decades, the Sundarbans have been subject to increasing pollution by trace elements caused by the progressive industrialization and urbanization of the basins of these three rivers. As a consequence, animals and plants dwelling downstream in the mangroves are exposed to these pollutants in varying degrees, and may potentially affect human health when consumed. The aim of the present study was to analyse the concentrations of seven trace elements (Zn, Cu, Cr, Hg, Pb, Cd and As) in 14 different animal and plant species collected in the Sundarbans in Bangladesh to study their transfer through the food web and to determine whether their levels in edible species are acceptable for human consumption. δ(15)N values were used as a proxy of the trophic level. A decrease in Zn, Cu, Pb and Cd levels was observed with increasing trophic position. Trace element concentrations measured in all organisms were, in general, lower than the concentrations obtained in other field studies conducted in the same region. When examined with respect to accepted international standards, the concentrations observed in fish and crustaceans were generally found to be safe for human consumption. However, the levels of Zn in Scylla serrata and Cr and Cd in Harpadon nehereus exceeded the proposed health advisory levels and may be of concern for human health.

  18. [Distribution and physicochemical properties of aquatic colloids in the Yangtze estuarine and coastal ecosystem].

    PubMed

    Gu, Li-Jun; Yang, Yi; Liu, Min; Nie, Ming-Hua; Li, Tao; Hou, Li-Jun

    2013-11-01

    Cross-flow ultrafiltration (CFUF) technique was applied for isolating colloids from waters in the Yangtze estuarine and coastal ecosystem. The stability and physicochemical properties of colloids were analyzed quantitatively. Colloidal size and Zeta-potential at XP and WSK station decreased with the increasing pH, and reached the point of zero charge at pH < 2 and pH 3.8, respectively. The colloidal organic carbon (COC) concentration in the collected samples was 7.7-35.7 micromol x L(-1), occupying 7.1% -41.7% of the total dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Three-dimensional excitation/emission matrix fluorescence spectroscopy (3DEEM) was used to analyze the samples and the results showed tryptophan-like fluorescence peaks, UV fulvic-like fluorescence peaks and humic-like fluorescence peaks. Concentrations of colloidal Na, Mg, K, Ca, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn and Ni accounted for 0.33%, 5.7%, 0.975%, 1%, 7.2%, 7%, 11.9%, 15.7%, 5.5%, 10.5% and 11.3% of the dissolved phase in average, and the binding capacity of Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Ni with COC was generally higher than that of Na, Mg, K, Ca. There were significant correlations between colloidal size and salinity, between DOC and salinity, and between UOC and salinity, but no linear relationship between COC and salinity was found. The total concentration of trace metals (Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Ni) and COC showed a linear relationship.

  19. Managing the effects of multiple stressors on aquatic ecosystems under water scarcity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barceló Cullerés, Damià; Ludwig, Ralf

    2015-04-01

    Water and water-related services are major components of the human wellbeing, and as such are major factors of socio-economic development in Europe; yet freshwater systems are under threat by a variety of stressors (organic and inorganic pollution, geomorphological alterations, land cover change, water abstraction, invasive species and pathogens. Some stressors, such as water scarcity, can be a stressor on its own because of its structural character, and drive the effects of other stressors. The relevance of water scarcity as a stressor is more important in semi-arid regions, such as the Mediterranean basin, which are characterized by highly variable river flows and the occurrence of low flows. This has resulted in increases in frequency and magnitude of extreme flow events. Furthermore, in other European regions such as eastern Germany, western Poland and England, water demand exceeds water availability and water scarcity has become an important management issue. Water scarcity is most commonly associated with inappropriate water management, with resulting river flow reductions. It has become one of the most important drivers of change in freshwater ecosystems. Conjoint occurrence of a myriad of stressors (chemical, geomorphological, biological) under water scarcity will produce novel and unfamiliar synergies and most likely very pronounced effects. Within this context, GLOBAQUA has assembled a multidisciplinary team of leading scientists in the fields of hydrology, chemistry, ecology, ecotoxicology, economy, sociology, engineering and modeling in order to study the interaction of multiple stressors within the frame of strong pressure on water resources. The aim is to achieve a better understanding how current management practices and policies could be improved by identifying the main drawbacks and alternatives.

  20. Distribution and trophic transfer of short-chain chlorinated paraffins in an aquatic ecosystem receiving effluents from a sewage treatment plant.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Lixi; Wang, Thanh; Wang, Pu; Liu, Qian; Han, Shanlong; Yuan, Bo; Zhu, Nali; Wang, Yawei; Jiang, Guibin

    2011-07-01

    Short-chain chlorinated paraffins (SCCPs) are an extremely complex group of industrial chemicals and found to be potential persistent organic pollutants (POPs), and thus have attracted extensive concern worldwide. In this study, influent, effluent, and sludge were collected from a large sewage treatment plant (STP) in Beijing, China. Water, sediment, and aquatic species were also collected from a recipient lake that receives effluents discharged from the STP. These samples were then analyzed to investigate the effect of STP effluent on distribution and trophic transfer of SCCPs in the local aquatic ecosystem. Concentrations of total SCCPs (ΣSCCPs) in lake water and surface sediments were found in the range 162-176 ng/L and 1.1-8.7 μg/g (dry weight, dw), respectively. Vertical concentration profiles of sediment cores showed ΣSCCPs decreased exponentially with increasing depth. Specific congener composition analysis in sediment layers indicated possible in situ biodegradation might be occurring. High bioaccumulation of SCCPs was observed in the sampled aquatic species. The bioaccumulation factor (BAF) generally increased with the number of chlorines in the SCCP congeners. A significantly positive correlation between lipid-normalized ΣSCCPs concentration and trophic levels (R(2) = 0.65, p < 0.05) indicate that SCCPs can biomagnify through the food chain in the effluent-receiving aquatic ecosystem.

  1. Comparing the Influence of Wildfire and Prescribed Burns on Watershed Nitrogen Biogeochemistry Using 15N Natural Abundance in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystem Components

    PubMed Central

    Stephan, Kirsten; Kavanagh, Kathleen L.; Koyama, Akihiro

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated differences in the effects of three low-severity spring prescribed burns and four wildfires on nitrogen (N) biogeochemistry in Rocky Mountain headwater watersheds. We compared paired (burned/unburned) watersheds of four wildfires and three spring prescribed burns for three growing seasons post-fire. To better understand fire effects on the entire watershed ecosystem, we measured N concentrations and δ15N in both the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems components, i.e., soil, understory plants in upland and riparian areas, streamwater, and in-stream moss. In addition, we measured nitrate reductase activity in foliage of Spiraea betulifolia, a dominant understory species. We found increases of δ15N and N concentrations in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem N pools after wildfire, but responses were limited to terrestrial N pools after prescribed burns indicating that N transfer from terrestrial to aquatic ecosystem components did not occur in low-severity prescribed burns. Foliar δ15N differed between wildfire and prescribed burn sites; the δ15N of foliage of upland plants was enriched by 2.9 ‰ (difference between burned and unburned watersheds) in the first two years after wildfire, but only 1.3 ‰ after prescribed burns. In-stream moss δ15N in wildfire-burned watersheds was enriched by 1.3 ‰, but there was no response by moss in prescription-burned watersheds, mirroring patterns of streamwater nitrate concentrations. S. betulifolia showed significantly higher nitrate reductase activity two years after wildfires relative to corresponding unburned watersheds, but no such difference was found after prescribed burns. These responses are consistent with less altered N biogeochemistry after prescribed burns relative to wildfire. We concluded that δ15N values in terrestrial and aquatic plants and streamwater nitrate concentrations after fire can be useful indicators of the magnitude and duration of fire effects and the fate of post

  2. Holocene Carbon Fluxes and Palaeoproductivity in Aquatic Ecosystems: a Multiproxy, Palaeolimnological Approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, A. W.; Leng, M. J.; Morley, D. W.; Piotrowska, N.; Rioual, P.; Swann, G. E. A.

    2014-12-01

    Inland waters act as an important control on the global carbon cycle. Deep tectonic lakes may provide a key link between short-term and long-term carbon cycles as buried carbon is essentially locked away from the atmosphere over geological timescales. Here we investigate Holocene carbon dynamics in one of the worlds most important lake ecosystems, Lake Baikal, Siberia. We test the hypothesis that multiple factors play a significant role in determining long-term carbon dynamics in central Asia, and that these factors change in importance over time. Carbon isotopes (δ13C), percentage total organic carbon (%TOC) were analysed during combustion in a Carlo Erba 1500 on-line to a VG Triple Trap and dual-inlet mass spectrometer. A multi-decadal organic geochemistry record (%TOC; δ13C, C/N ratios) was determined on Holocene sediments extracted from a slope terrace c. 600 m deep. Age-depth modelling on radiocarbon-dated pollen extracts was undertaken using 'Bacon', which takes into account variable sediment accumulation rates. Carbon mass accumulation rates (CMAR; g cm-2 yr-1) were estimated at a centennial scale resolution. δ13C values were routinely higher during cool glacial periods (-26 ‰) than during warmer climates (-28 ‰) linked to changes in carbon sources. Diatom productivity & boreal forest expansion were strongly associated with δ13C variability during the early Holocene, but after 8 kyr BP, no relationships are apparent. CMAR were highest during the early Holocene (11.7 - 8 kyr BP) although rates fluctuated considerably. Peak values of 12.5 g cm-2 yr-1 were observed at 10.35 kyr BP before a rapid decline to c. 5.2 g cm-2 yr-1 at 10.05 kyr BP. CMAR declined to lowest Holocene values of 3.5 g cm-2 yr-1 by 3.9 kyr BP at the same time as maximum δ13C values (-27.0 ‰), indicative of low palaeoproductivity. Our data show that measures of palaeoproductivity in Lake Baikal are complex, and during the early Holocene are strongly associated with allochthonous

  3. Spatial and temporal controls on Alnus-derived nutrients and stream stoichiometry: Implications for aquatic ecosystem productivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devotta, D.; Fraterrigo, J.; Walsh, P.; Hu, F.

    2015-12-01

    Predicting how nutrient fluxes that cross ecosystem boundaries will respond to future climate change is one of the greatest challenges for ecology in the 21st century. In southwestern (SW) Alaska, Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) and nitrogen (N)-fixation by alder (Alnus spp.) provide key nutrient subsidies to freshwater systems. The importance of alder-derived nutrients (ADN) to aquatic systems will increase as alder cover expands under climate warming and salmon harvesting reduces marine-derived nutrients. We investigate broad-scale spatial and temporal drivers of ADN and stream N:P in 26 streams in SW Alaska. Alder cover and watershed features were measured using satellite images and topographic maps in ArcGIS. Stream water samples were collected in each spring and summer from 2010-2013 and analyzed for dissolved N and total phosphorus (TP). We obtained annual growing season length (AGSL) and sum of growing degree days (GDD) data from weather stations. Elevation was inversely related to alder cover, stream N, and N:P (ρ=-0.802, -0.65, and -0.71 resp., p<0.01, n=208). Alder cover had the largest influence on stream N (mean β estimate=0.402, 90% CIs). Stream N increased with alder cover, under longer AGSL, and lower GDD (interaction effect sizes between alder and stream N=0.196 and -0.185 resp., 90% CIs), suggesting that long growing seasons with minimal heat accumulation during the spring and fall increased ADN export. Higher P was associated with lower temperatures, possibly reflecting reduced P demand under low rates of metabolic activity. Structural equation modeling revealed significant causal relationships among elevation, alder cover, and stream N:P across multiple years (r2=0.94, X2=742.8, df=9, p<0.01). All paths in the model were significant (p<0.01) except between stream N:P and weather (p=0.165). These results demonstrate that spatial variation in alder cover associated with elevation is a stronger regulator of ADN fluxes and stream N:P than

  4. Isotopic study of mercury sources and transfer between a freshwater lake and adjacent forest food web.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Sae Yun; Blum, Joel D; Nadelhoffer, Knute J; Timothy Dvonch, J; Tsui, Martin Tsz-Ki

    2015-11-01

    Studies of monomethylmercury (MMHg) sources and biogeochemical pathways have been extensive in aquatic ecosystems, but limited in forest ecosystems. Increasing evidence suggests that there is significant mercury (Hg) exchange between aquatic and forest ecosystems. We use Hg stable isotope ratios (δ(202)Hg and Δ(199)Hg) to investigate the relative importance of MMHg sources and assess Hg transfer pathways between Douglas Lake and adjacent forests located at the University of Michigan Biological Station, USA. We characterize Hg isotopic compositions of basal resources and use linear regression of % MMHg versus δ(202)Hg and Δ(199)Hg to estimate Hg isotope values for inorganic mercury (IHg) and MMHg in the aquatic and adjacent forest food webs. In the aquatic ecosystem, we found that lake sediment represents a mixture of IHg pools deposited via watershed runoff and precipitation. The δ(202)Hg and Δ(199)Hg values estimated for IHg are consistent with other studies that measured forest floor in temperate forests. The Δ(199)Hg value estimated for MMHg in the aquatic food web indicates that MMHg is subjected to ~20% photochemical degradation prior to bioaccumulation. In the forest ecosystem, we found a significant negative relationship between total Hg and δ(202)Hg and Δ(199)Hg of soil collected at multiple distances from the lakeshore and lake sediment. This suggests that IHg input from watershed runoff provides an important Hg transfer pathway between the forest and aquatic ecosystems. We measured Δ(199)Hg values for high trophic level insects and compared these insects at multiple distances perpendicular to the lake shoreline. The Δ(199)Hg values correspond to the % canopy cover suggesting that forest MMHg is subjected to varying extents of photochemical degradation and the extent may be controlled by sunlight. Our study demonstrates that the use of Hg isotopes adds important new insight into the relative importance of MMHg sources and complex Hg transfer

  5. Are harmful algal blooms becoming the greatest inland water quality threat to public health and aquatic ecosystems?

    PubMed

    Brooks, Bryan W; Lazorchak, James M; Howard, Meredith D A; Johnson, Mari-Vaughn V; Morton, Steve L; Perkins, Dawn A K; Reavie, Euan D; Scott, Geoffrey I; Smith, Stephanie A; Steevens, Jeffery A

    2016-01-01

    In this Focus article, the authors ask a seemingly simple question: Are harmful algal blooms (HABs) becoming the greatest inland water quality threat to public health and aquatic ecosystems? When HAB events require restrictions on fisheries, recreation, and drinking water uses of inland water bodies significant economic consequences result. Unfortunately, the magnitude, frequency, and duration of HABs in inland waters are poorly understood across spatiotemporal scales and differentially engaged among states, tribes, and territories. Harmful algal bloom impacts are not as predictable as those from conventional chemical contaminants, for which water quality assessment and management programs were primarily developed, because interactions among multiple natural and anthropogenic factors determine the likelihood and severity to which a HAB will occur in a specific water body. These forcing factors can also affect toxin production. Beyond site-specific water quality degradation caused directly by HABs, the presence of HAB toxins can negatively influence routine surface water quality monitoring, assessment, and management practices. Harmful algal blooms present significant challenges for achieving water quality protection and restoration goals when these toxins confound interpretation of monitoring results and environmental quality standards implementation efforts for other chemicals and stressors. Whether HABs presently represent the greatest threat to inland water quality is debatable, though in inland waters of developed countries they typically cause more severe acute impacts to environmental quality than conventional chemical contamination events. The authors identify several timely research needs. Environmental toxicology, environmental chemistry, and risk-assessment expertise must interface with ecologists, engineers, and public health practitioners to engage the complexities of HAB assessment and management, to address the forcing factors for HAB formation, and

  6. Aquatic Ecosystem Exposure Associated with Atmospheric Mercury Deposition: Importance of Watershed and Water Body Hot Spots and Hot Moments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knightes, C. D.; Golden, H. E.

    2008-12-01

    Atmospheric deposition of divalent mercury (Hg(II)) is the often the primary driving force for mercury contamination in fish tissue, resulting in mercury exposure to wildlife and humans. In lake systems associated with small watersheds, direct deposition to the water surface is typically the dominant mercury loading source; however, in lake systems with large watersheds and river systems, these inputs may be relatively small compared to loadings from the watershed via erosion and surface runoff. Within each system, transformation of the deposited mercury into the environmentally relevant form, methylmercury (MeHg), proceeds at different rates largely regulated by physical characteristics such as watershed land use types and water body hydraulic residence times, as water body chemistry, such as pH and trophic status Therefore, to fully represent mercury exposure in aquatic ecosystems, we must couple watershed models with water body models and explore where, why, and when hot spots and hot moments of transformation and transport occur. Here we link the simulated atmospheric mercury deposition results from the Community Multi-Scale Air Quality (CMAQ) model, a spatially distributed grid-based watershed mercury (Hg) model (GBMM), and the Water Quality Analysis Simulation Program (WASP). We use this multi-media modeling framework to simulate mercury species cycling over time for the different river reaches and watersheds within the Cape Fear River Basin, North Carolina. Through these simulations we investigate the importance of specific watershed and surface water system characteristics in simulating MeHg exposure concentrations. Because GBMM is a spatially-distributed model we are able to investigate the importance of such factors (i.e., watershed area, land-use types, and land-use percentages) in transporting and transforming deposited mercury. We present how particular land-use types and land-use change influence total loading and total mercury concentrations, how

  7. A Screening-Level Approach for Comparing Risks Affecting Aquatic Ecosystem Services over Socio-Environmental Gradients

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harmon, T. C.; Conde, D.; Villamizar, S. R.; Reid, B.; Escobar, J.; Rusak, J.; Hoyos, N.; Scordo, F.; Perillo, G. M.; Piccolo, M. C.; Zilio, M.; Velez, M.

    2015-12-01

    Assessing risks to aquatic ecosystems services (ES) is challenging and time-consuming, and effective strategies for prioritizing more detailed assessment efforts are needed. We propose a screening-level risk analysis (SRA) approach that scales ES risk using socioeconomic and environmental indices to capture anthropic and climatic pressures, as well as the capacity for institutional responses to those pressures. The method considers ES within a watershed context, and uses expert input to prioritize key services and the associated pressures that threaten them. The SRA approach focuses on estimating ES risk affect factors, which are the sum of the intensity factors for all hazards or pressures affecting the ES. We estimate the pressure intensity factors in a novel manner, basing them on the nation's (i) human development (proxied by Inequality-adjusted Human Development Index, IHDI), (ii) environmental regulatory and monitoring state (Environmental Performance Index, EPI) and (iii) the current level of water stress in the watershed (baseline water stress, BWS). Anthropic intensity factors for future conditions are derived from the baseline values based on the nation's 10-year trend in IHDI and EPI; ES risks in nations with stronger records of change are rewarded more/penalized less in estimates for good/poor future management scenarios. Future climatic intensity factors are tied to water stress estimates based on two general circulation model (GCM) outcomes. We demonstrate the method for an international array of six sites representing a wide range of socio-environmental settings. The outcomes illustrate novel consequences of the scaling scheme. Risk affect factors may be greater in a highly developed region under intense climatic pressure, or in less well-developed regions due to human factors (e.g., poor environmental records). As a screening-level tool, the SRA approach offers considerable promise for ES risk comparisons among watersheds and regions so that

  8. Risk mitigation measures for diffuse pesticide entry into aquatic ecosystems: proposal of a guide to identify appropriate measures on a catchment scale.

    PubMed

    Bereswill, Renja; Streloke, Martin; Schulz, Ralf

    2014-04-01

    Measures to mitigate the risk of pesticide entry into aquatic ecosystems are becoming increasingly more important in the management of hot spots of pesticide transfer; such management, for example, is required by the European Union's directive for the sustainable use of pesticides (2009/128/EC). Measures beyond those currently stipulated for pesticide product authorization may be needed. A concise compilation of the appropriate measures for users (that are primarily farmers but also, e.g., regulators and farm extension services) and a guide for practically identifying these measures at the catchment scale is currently not available. Therefore, a proposal was developed for a guide focusing on the most important diffuse entry pathways (spray drift and runoff). Based on a survey of exposure-relevant landscape parameters (i.e., the riparian buffer strip width, riparian vegetation type, density of ground vegetation cover, coverage of the water body with aquatic macrophytes, field slope, and existence of concentrated flow paths), a set of risk mitigation measures focusing on the specific situation of pollution of a water body catchment can be identified. The user can then choose risk mitigation measures to implement, assisted by evaluations of their efficiency in reducing pesticide entry, feasibility, and expected acceptability to farmers. Currently, 12 landscape-related measures and 6 application-related measures are included. The present guide presents a step toward the practical implementation of risk mitigation measures for reducing pesticide entry in aquatic ecosystems.

  9. Heavy metal pollution induced due to coal mining effluent on surrounding aquatic ecosystem and its management through naturally occurring aquatic macrophytes.

    PubMed

    Mishra, Virendra Kumar; Upadhyaya, Alka Rani; Pandey, Sudhir Kumar; Tripathi, B D

    2008-03-01

    Three aquatic plants Eichhornia crassipes, Lemna minor and Spirodela polyrhhiza were used in laboratory for the removal of heavy metals from the coal mining effluent. Plants were grown singly as well as in combination during 21 days phytoremediation experiment. Results revealed that combination of E. crassipes and L. minor was the most efficient for the removal of heavy metals while E. crassipes was the most efficient in monoculture. Significant correlations between metal concentration in final water and macrophytes were obtained. Translocation factor i.e. ratio of shoot to root metal concentration revealed that metals were largely retained in the roots of aquatic macrophytes. Analytical results showed that plant roots have accumulated heavy metals approximately 10 times of its initial concentration. These plants were also subjected to toxicity assessment and no symptom of metal toxicity was found therefore, this method can be applied on the large scale treatment of waste water where volumes generated are very high and concentrations of pollutants are low.

  10. The Effects of Experimentally Elevated N Deposition on Soil N Dynamics: Linkages Between Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rustad, L. E.; Fernandez, I. J.; Parker, J. E.; Kahl, J. S.; Norton, S. A.

    2001-05-01

    The Bear Brook Watershed in Maine (BBWM) is a long-term, whole-ecosystem chemical manipulation experiment. Treatments consist of bimonthly aerial applications of (NH4)2SO4 resulting in a 3X and 2X loading above ambient for N and S, respectively. The site consists of two adjacent ~10ha forested stream watersheds with distinct spruce and hardwood forest types. Stream chemistry responded rapidly to the treatments, including an approximately 6x increase in NO3 concentrations. Despite this increase, approximately 82 percent of the added N was retained within the system. In order to help elucidate mechanisms of N retention, soils were sampled quantitatively in 1998 following 9 years of treatment. Only small differences existed between watersheds in total soil N that largely reflected soil mass differences. This was not unexpected given that the total treatment N represented only ~2 percent of the total soil N. The total added N was ~ 20x greater than the combined pools of the more ephemeral exchangeable NH4-N + NO3-N, which were both greater in the treated watershed compared to the control. Potential net N mineralization and nitrification were also significantly greater in the treated watershed compared to the control. These differences were more evident in the softwood than the hardwood stands, due in part to anomalously high potential net N mineralization rates in one of the control hardwood soil types. These results underscore the importance of recognizing the varying contributions of different vegetation and soil types to whole watershed response to elevated N deposition.

  11. Non-use Economic Values for Little-Known Aquatic Species at Risk: Comparing Choice Experiment Results from Surveys Focused on Species, Guilds, and Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rudd, Murray A.; Andres, Sheri; Kilfoil, Mary

    2016-09-01

    Accounting for non-market economic values of biological diversity is important to fully assess the benefits of environmental policies and regulations. This study used three choice experiments (species-, guild-, and ecosystem-based surveys) in parallel to quantify non-use values for little-known aquatic species at risk in southern Ontario. Mean willingness-to-pay (WTP) ranged from 9.45 to 21.41 per listing status increment under Canada's Species at Risk Act for both named and unnamed little-known species. Given the broad range of valuable ecosystem services likely to accrue to residents from substantial increases in water quality and the rehabilitation of coastal wetlands, the difference in WTP between species- and ecosystem-based surveys seemed implausibly small. It appeared that naming species—the `iconization' of species in two of the three surveys—had an important effect on WTP. The results suggest that reasonable annual household-level WTP values for little-known aquatic species may be 10 to 25 per species or 10 to 20 per listing status increment. The results highlighted the utility of using parallel surveys to triangulate on non-use economic values for little-known species at risk.

  12. Distribution and transport kinetics of radionuclides sup 99 Mo and sup 131 I in a simulated aquatic ecosystem

    SciTech Connect

    Svadlenkova, M.; Konecny, J.; Obdrzalek, M.; Simanov, L. )

    1990-04-01

    Radioactive liquid wastes from nuclear power stations increase the activity not only of water but also of sediment, aquatic and shore plants, and animals. On average, the majority of the total radioactivity brought to the aquatic system is absorbed by the sediment; the remaining fraction is distributed between water and biomass. For us to be able to assess the influence of the nuclear power station at Temelin in South Bohemia on the nearby hydrosphere, the authors concentrated first on the experimental investigation of the distribution and transport kinetics of some radionuclides in a simulated aquatic system.

  13. Evaluation of the health status of a coastal ecosystem in southeast Mexico: Assessment of water quality, phytoplankton and submerged aquatic vegetation.

    PubMed

    Herrera-Silveira, Jorge A; Morales-Ojeda, Sara M

    2009-01-01

    The coastal environment of the Yucatan Peninsula (SE, Mexico) includes a wide variety of ecosystems ranging from mangroves to coral reefs, resulting in a heterogeneous landscape. Specifically, the marine system is characterized by environmental differences which respond to regional and local forcing functions such as marine currents and groundwater discharges (GD). Such functional characteristics were used here to define four subregions across the Yucatan coast and diagnose the health status of this coastal marine ecosystem. To achieve this goal, we conducted an analysis and integration of water quality variables, an eutrophic assessment, evaluated changes in submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV), and analyzed the community structure and distribution of harmful phytoplankton. The first step was to determine the reference values for each subregion based on data previously collected from 2002 to 2006 along the coast of Yucatan, 200m offshore. The trophic index (TRIX) and Canadian index for aquatic life (CCMEWQI) were used to diagnose each subregion and then the ASSETS approach was conducted for Dzilam and Progreso, sampling localities on each end of the health status continuum (those with the best and worst conditions). Overall, results indicated that the marine coastal ecosystem of Yucatan is in good condition; however, differences were observed between subregions that can be attributed to local forcing functions and human impacts. Specifically, the central region (zone HZII, Progreso-Telchac) showed symptoms of initial eutrophication due to nutrient inputs from human activities. The eastern region (zone HZ III, Dzilam-Las Bocas) showed a meso-eutrophic condition linked to natural groundwater discharges, while the other two subregions western (zone HZI Celestun-Palmar) and caribbean (zone HZ IV Ria Lagartos-El Cuyo) exhibited symptoms of oligo-mesotrophic condition. These findings may be considered baseline information for coastal ecosystem monitoring programs in

  14. Bottom-up biodiversity effects increase resource subsidy flux between ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Allen, Daniel C; Vaughn, Caryn C; Kelly, Jeffrey F; Cooper, Joshua T; Engel, Michael H

    2012-10-01

    Although biodiversity can increase ecosystem productivity and adjacent ecosystems are often linked by resource flows between them, the relationship between biodiversity and resource subsidies is not well understood. Here we test the influence of biodiversity on resource subsidy flux by manipulating freshwater mussel species richness and documenting the effects on a trophic cascade from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems. In a mesocosm experiment, mussel effects on algae were linked through stable isotope analyses to mussel-derived nitrogen subsidies, but mussel biodiversity effects on algal accumulation were not significant. In contrast, mussel biodiversity significantly increased aquatic insect emergence rates, because aquatic insects were responding to mussel-induced changes in algal community structure instead of algal accumulation. In turn, mussel biodiversity also significantly increased terrestrial spider abundance as spiders tracked increases in aquatic insect prey after a reproduction event. In a comparative field study, we found that sites with greater mussel species richness had higher aquatic insect emergence rates. These results show that, because food webs in adjacent ecosystems are often linked, biodiversity effects in one ecosystem can influence adjacent ecosystems as well.

  15. Spatial and temporal behavior and acute ecotoxicological effects of Tributyltin (TBT) on coral reef and adjacent ecosystems around Okinawa Island, Japan.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheikh, M. A.; Higuchi, T.; Imo, T. S.; Fujimura, H.; Oomori, T.

    2007-12-01

    Spatial and temporal behavior of the tributyl tin (TBT) were investigated in the coastal areas around Okinawa Island, Japan. A seasonal monitoring study was conducted between February and October 2006. The effects of TBT on the carbon metabolisms (net production and calcification) on the intact coral-alga association Galaxea fascicularis were also investigated. Mean concentration of TBT (2.45 ng/L) found in the Manko estuary waters have exceeded some international permissible targets of waters quality guideline for TBT (1ng/L). The sediments in Manko estuary sediments can be considered lightly contaminated (0-20 ng/g dw) and Okukubi estuary as uncontaminated (below 3ng/g dw) with TBT. The seasonal concentration pattern of TBT at the Manko estuary was autumn > spring > summer > winter. The acute ecotoxicological results show that the photosynthesis rate and calcification rate were significantly reduced by 78 % and 72 % relative to the control (ANOVA, p<0.001) when corals were exposed to 5000 ng/LTBT, respectively. No significant effects (ANOVA, p>0.05) were observed when corals were exposed to 1000 ng/LTBT. The present study reports the occurrence and continuous input of TBT in the coastal areas around Okinawa Island, even 16 years after legal restriction of TBT usage in coastal waters was implemented by the Japanese Environmental Authorities. However, the nominal sensitive concentration of TBT that causes alteration of carbon metabolisms of coral within 96 hrs exposure are much higher than those recently found in the coral reef waters and adjacent ecosystems.

  16. Deposition of chromium in aquatic ecosystem from effluents of handloom textile industries in Ranaghat–Fulia region of West Bengal, India

    PubMed Central

    Sanyal, Tanmay; Kaviraj, Anilava; Saha, Subrata

    2014-01-01

    Accumulation of chromium (Cr) was determined in water, sediment, aquatic plants, invertebrates and fish in aquatic ecosystems receiving effluents from handloom textile industries in Ranaghat–Fulia region of West Bengal in India. Cr was determined in the samples by atomic absorption spectrophotometer and data were analyzed functionally by Genetic Algorithm to determine trend of depositions of Cr in the sediment and water. Area plot curve was used to represent accumulation of Cr in biota. The results indicate that the aquatic ecosystems receiving the effluents from handloom textile factories are heavily contaminated by Cr. The contamination is hardly reflected in the concentration of Cr in water, but sediment exhibits seasonal fluctuation in deposition of Cr, concentration reaching to as high as 451.0 μg g−1 during the peak production period. There is a clear trend of gradual increase in the deposition of Cr in the sediment. Aquatic weed, insect and mollusk specimens collected from both closed water bodies (S1 & S2) and riverine resources (S3 & S4) showed high rate of accumulation of Cr. Maximum concentration of Cr was detected in roots of aquatic weeds (877.5 μg g−1). Fish specimens collected from the polluted sites (S3 & S4) of river Churni showed moderate to high concentration of Cr in different tissues. Maximum concentration was detected in the liver of Glossogobius giuris (679.7 μg g−1) during monsoon followed by gill of Mystus bleekeri (190.0 μg g−1) and gut of G. giuris (123.7 μg g−1) during summer. Eutropiichthys vacha showed moderately high concentration of Cr in different tissues (65–99 μg g−1) while Puntius sarana showed relatively low concentration of Cr (below detection limit to 18.0 μg g−1) in different tissues except in gill (64.4 μg g−1). PMID:26644938

  17. Science for Managing Riverine Ecosystems: Actions for the USGS Identified in the Workshop "Analysis of Flow and Habitat for Instream Aquatic Communities"

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bencala, Kenneth E.; Hamilton, David B.; Petersen, James H.

    2006-01-01

    Federal and state agencies need improved scientific analysis to support riverine ecosystem management. The ability of the USGS to integrate geologic, hydrologic, chemical, geographic, and biological data into new tools and models provides unparalleled opportunities to translate the best riverine science into useful approaches and usable information to address issues faced by river managers. In addition to this capability to provide integrated science, the USGS has a long history of providing long-term and nationwide information about natural resources. The USGS is now in a position to advance its ability to provide the scientific support for the management of riverine ecosystems. To address this need, the USGS held a listening session in Fort Collins, Colorado in April 2006. Goals of the workshop were to: 1) learn about the key resource issues facing DOI, other Federal, and state resource management agencies; 2) discuss new approaches and information needs for addressing these issues; and 3) outline a strategy for the USGS role in supporting riverine ecosystem management. Workshop discussions focused on key components of a USGS strategy: Communications, Synthesis, and Research. The workshop identified 3 priority actions the USGS can initiate now to advance its capabilities to support integrated science for resource managers in partner government agencies and non-governmental organizations: 1) Synthesize the existing science of riverine ecosystem processes to produce broadly applicable conceptual models, 2) Enhance selected ongoing instream flow projects with complementary interdisciplinary studies, and 3) Design a long-term, watershed-scale research program that will substantively reinvent riverine ecosystem science. In addition, topical discussion groups on hydrology, geomorphology, aquatic habitat and populations, and socio-economic analysis and negotiation identified eleven important complementary actions required to advance the state of the science and to

  18. Environmental behaviour of short-chain chlorinated paraffins in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems of Ny-Ålesund and London Island, Svalbard, in the Arctic.

    PubMed

    Li, Huijuan; Fu, Jianjie; Pan, Wenxiao; Wang, Pu; Li, Yingming; Zhang, Qinghua; Wang, Yawei; Zhang, Aiqian; Liang, Yong; Jiang, Guibin

    2017-07-15

    The environmental behaviour of short-chain chlorinated paraffins (SCCPs) was investigated in both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in the Arctic. The mean concentrations of SCCPs in the aquatic and terrestrial samples were 178.9ng/g dry weight (dw) and 157.2ng/g dw, respectively. Short carbon chain (C10) and less-chlorinated (Cl6) congener groups were predominant in the Arctic samples, accounting for 48.6% and 34.8% of the total SCCPs, respectively. The enrichment of lighter SCCP congener groups (i.e., fewer chlorine atoms with shorter carbon chain lengths) indicated that the fractionation process occurred during long-range transport. The biomagnification factor (BMF) was 0.46 from gammarid to cod, which indicated that the SCCPs did not biomagnify between these two species. The soil-vegetation bioaccumulation factor (BAF) of SCCPs was 29.9, and C13 and Cl7, 8 congener groups tended to accumulate in the terrestrial vegetation. Regression analysis (BAFs=10.9×#C+5.6×#Cl-125.2, R=0.53, P<0.01) showed that the number of carbon and chlorine atoms influenced the bioaccumulative behaviour of SCCPs and suggested that the number of carbon atoms had a greater influence on the BAFs of SCCPs in the terrestrial ecosystem than did the number of chlorine atoms.

  19. Change in fish fauna as indication of aquatic ecosystem condition in Rio Grande de Morelia-Lago de Cuitzeo Basin, Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Soto-Galera, E.; Paulo-Maya, J.; Lopez-Lopez, E.; Serna-Hernandez, J.A. . Escuela Nacional de Ciencias Biologicas); Lyons, J. )

    1999-07-01

    The Rio Grande de Morelia-Lago de Cuitzeo basin in west central Mexico has experienced major increases in water pollution from a rapidly growing human population. The authors examined changes in the long-term distribution of fishes in relation to water quality and quantity in order to assess the condition and health of aquatic ecosystems in the basin. Sampling between 1985 and 1993 revealed that five (26%) of the 19 native fish species known from the basin had been extirpated. Two of these were endemics, Chirostoma charari and C. compressum, and they are presumed extinct. Twelve (63%) of the remaining species had declines in distribution. Sixteen (80%) of the 20 localities sampled had lost species. The greatest declines occurred in Lago de Cuitzeo proper and in the lower portion of the Rio Grande de Morelia watershed. Species losses from the lake were attributable to drying and hypereutrophication of the lake because of substantial reductions in the amount and quality of tributary inputs, whereas losses from the Rio Grande de Morelia watershed were the result of pollution from agricultural, municipal, and industrial sources, especially in the region around the city of Morelia. Three localities in the upper portion of the Rio Grande de Morelia watershed--Cointzio reservoir, La Mintzita spring, and Insurgente Morelos stream--contained most of the remaining fish species diversity in the basin and deserve additional protection. Fish faunal changes indicated major declines in the health of aquatic ecosystems in the Morelia-Cuitzeo basin.

  20. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields (External Review Draft)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report assesses the state of the science on the environmental impacts of mountaintop mines and valley fills (MTM-VF) on streams in the Central Appalachian Coalfields. Our review focused on the aquatic impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining, which, as its name suggests, ...

  1. Kinetics Formulations for ICM-Lite: A Tool to Predict and Quantify Ecosystem Benefits in Aquatic Systems

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-07-01

    kinetics include representations of the aquatic carbon, nitrogen , phosphorus, and oxygen cycles . Salinity, temperature, suspended solids, and one user...26 Figure 11. The model nitrogen cycle . Nitrate...model nitrogen cycle (Figure 11) includes the following processes: • algal production and metabolism • predation • mineralization of organic nitrogen

  2. ENVIRONMENTAL AUDITING: Change in Fish Fauna as Indication of Aquatic Ecosystem Condition in Río Grande de Morelia-Lago de Cuitzeo Basin, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Soto-Galera; Paulo-Maya; López-López; Serna-Hernández

    1999-07-01

    / The Río Grande de Morelia-Lago de Cuitzeo basin in west central Mexico has experienced major increases in water pollution from a rapidly growing human population. We examined changes in the long-term distribution of fishes in relation to water quality and quantity in order to assess the condition and health of aquatic ecosystems inthe basin. Sampling between 1985 and 1993 revealed that five (26%) of the 19 native fish species known from the basin had been extirpated. Two of these were endemics, Chirostoma charari and C. compressum, and they are presumed extinct. Twelve (63%) of the remaining species had declines in distribution. Sixteen (80%) of the 20 localities sampled had lost species. The greatest declines occurred in Lago de Cuitzeo proper and in the lower portion of the Río Grande de Morelia watershed. Species losses from the lake were attributable to drying and hypereutrophication of the lake because of substantial reductions in the amount and quality of tributary inputs, whereas losses from the Río Grande de Morelia watershed were the result of pollution from agricultural, municipal, and industrial sources, especially in the region around the city of Morelia. Three localities in the upper portion of the Río Grande de Morelia watershed-Cointzio reservoir, La Mintzita spring, and Insurgente Morelos stream-contained most of the remaining fish species diversity in the basin and deserve additional protection. Fish faunal changes indicated major declines in the health of aquatic ecosystems in the Morelia-Cuitzeo basin.KEY WORDS: Fish distribution; Río Lerma; Ecosystem health; Water quality; Chirostoma; Threatened and endangered specieshttp://link.springer-ny.com/link/service/journals/00267/bibs/24n1p133.html

  3. Evaluating the risk to aquatic ecosystems posed by leachate from tire shred fill in roads using toxicity tests, toxicity identification evaluations, and groundwater modeling.

    PubMed

    Sheehan, Patrick J; Warmerdam, John M; Ogle, Scott; Humphrey, Dana N; Patenaude, Stacey M

    2006-02-01

    The risk to adjacent aquatic systems posed by leachates from scrap tires used in engineering applications has not been characterized adequately. Toxicity testing, toxicity identification evaluation (TIE), and groundwater modeling were used to determine the circumstances under which tire shreds could be used as roadbed fill with negligible risk to aquatic organisms in adjacent water bodies. Elevated levels of iron, manganese, and several other chemicals were found in tire shred leachates. However, chronic toxicity tests with Ceriodaphnia dubia and fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) showed no adverse effects caused by leachates collected from tire shreds installed above the water table. Exposure to leachates collected from tire shreds installed below the water table resulted in significant reductions to both survival and reproduction in C. dubia. The TIE results indicated that exposure to soluble metals (likely ferrous iron primarily) and the formation of iron hydroxide precipitates on this invertebrate species likely were the causes of the observed effects. The available chemistry data show that iron concentrations in the affected groundwater decreased substantially within a short distance (0.61 m) downgradient of tire shred fill. Based on geochemical modeling, the use of tire shreds in applications below the water table is appropriate in settings where dissolved oxygen is greater than 2.0 mg/L, pH is greater than 5.8, and a downgradient buffer of approximately 3.0 m exists between the fill and the surface water. For settings with lower dissolved oxygen concentrations or lower pH, results of groundwater modeling indicate that a greater buffer distance (approximately 11 m) is needed to dilute the leachate to nontoxic levels under various soil and groundwater conditions solely through advection and dispersion processes.

  4. Design Standards for Instructional Computer Programs. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. The report describes design standards for the computer programs. They are designed to be…

  5. User's Guide for Subroutine FFORM. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry; Anderson, Lougenia

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. FFORM is a portable format-free input subroutine package which simplifies the input of values…

  6. Heat Balance of a Sheep in the Sun. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hatheway, W. H.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. Specifically, this module develops a method for calculating the exchange of heat between an…

  7. Dimensional Methods: Dimensions, Units and the Principle of Dimensional Homogeneity. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Applied Mathematics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fletcher, R. Ian

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. The module is concerned with conventional techniques such as concepts of measurement,…

  8. Animal Thermoregulation and the Operative Environmental (Equivalent) Temperature. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Process.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, R. D.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. Thermoregulation is defined as the ability of an organism to modify its body temperature. This…

  9. User's Guide for Subroutine PLOT3D. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. PLOT3D is a subroutine package which generates a variety of three dimensional hidden…

  10. Programmer's Guide for Subroutine PLOT3D. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. PLOT3D is a subroutine package which generates a variety of three-dimensional hidden…

  11. Heat Transfer Processes for the Thermal Energy Balance of Organisms. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, R. D.

    This module is part of a series designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. This module describes heat transfer processes involved in the exchange of heat…

  12. User's Guide for Subroutine PRNT3D. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. PRNT3D is a subroutine package which generates a variety of printer plot displays. The displays…

  13. Programmer's Guide for Subroutine PRNT3D. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Computer Programs and Graphics Capabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Larry

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. PRNT3D is a subroutine package which generates a variety of printed plot displays. The displays…

  14. Application of Bayesian belief net in modelling the origin and effects of terrigenous dissolved organic matter in a boreal aquatic ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahikainen, Mika; Hoikkala, Laura; Soinne, Helena

    2013-04-01

    Bayesian belief nets (BBN) are capable of developing holistic understanding of the origin, transportation, and effects of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in ecosystems. The role of riverine DOM, transporting carbon and macronutrients N and P into lakes and coastal areas, has been largely neglected in research about processes influencing aquatic ecosystem functions although dissolved organic matter provides a significant nutrient source for primary producers in aquatic environments. This neglect has also contributed to the environmental policies which are focused in the control of inorganic N and P load. It is of great social and economic interest to gain improved knowledge of whether the currently applied policy instruments act in synchrony in mitigating eutrophication caused by N and P versus DOM load. DOM is a complex mixture of compounds that are poorly characterized. DOM export is strongly regulated by land use (urban, forest, agricultural land, peat land), in addition to soil type and soil organic carbon concentration. Furthermore, the composition of DOM varies according to its origin. The fate and effects of DOM loads in the fresh water and coastal environments depend, for example, on their biodegradability. Degradation kinetics again depends on the interactions between composition of the DOM pool and the receiving environment. Impact studies of dissolved organic matter pose a complicated environmental impact assessment challenge for science. There exists strategic uncertainty in the science about the causal dependencies and about the quality of knowledge related to DOM. There is a clear need for systematization in the approach as uncertainty is typically high about many key processes. A cross-sectorial, integrative analysis will aid in focusing on the most relevant issues. A holistic and unambiguous analysis will provide support for policy-decisions and management by indicating which outcome is more probable than another. The task requires coupling complex

  15. Assessment in situ of genotoxicity in tadpoles and adults of frog Hypsiboas cordobae (Barrio 1965) inhabiting aquatic ecosystems associated to fluorite mine.

    PubMed

    Pollo, Favio E; Grenat, Pablo R; Otero, Manuel A; Salas, Nancy E; Martino, Adolfo L

    2016-11-01

    Non-lethal biological techniques such as blood biomarkers have gained attention due to their value as early signals of anthropic effects of contamination representing significant tools to evaluate ecosystems health. We evaluate and characterize in situ genotoxicity of water samples collected from aquatic ecosystems around a fluorite mine using amphibian frogs Hypsiboas cordobae as bioindicator species complemented with 16 physicochemical parameters. Four stations associated with fluorite mine sampling were sampled: a stream running on granitic rock with natural high fluorite content; two streams both running on metamorphic rock with low fluorite content; and an artificial decantation pond containing sediments produced by fluorite flotation process with high variation in physicochemical parameters. We analyses the blood of tadpoles and adults of H. Cordobae, calculated frequencies of micronuclei, erythrocyte nuclear abnormalities, mitosis, immature and enucleated erythrocytes. Individuals were measured and weighed and body condition was calculated. The results of this study indicate that individuals of decantation pond are exposed to compounds or mixtures which are causing cell damage when compared to those that were collected of stream. Larval stage was more vulnerable than the adult phase and it could be related mainly to the higher exposure time to xenobiotics, which can penetrate easily by skin, mouth and gills; additionally this site offers a reduced availability of food than other sites. Therefore, chronic exposure to pollutants could derive in degenerative and neoplastic diseases in target organs. Moreover these individuals may experience reproductive and behavioral disturbances which could lead to population decline in the long term.

  16. The McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica: Terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems responding to climatic events that enhance hydrologic transport across the landscape (John Dalton Medal Lecture)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKnight, Diane

    2015-04-01

    While continuous monitoring of stream flow and stream temperature has been a widely used resource for some time, currently there is great potential to expand continuous monitoring to include important water quality parameters such as nutrients and dissolved organic material. In many systems distinguishing between watershed and stream ecosystem controls can be challenging, and the usefulness of such monitoring can be enhanced by application of quantitative models to interpret observed patterns. The glacial meltwater streams of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, are surrounded by large expanses of patterned ground devoid of plants. In contrast, many streams have thriving cyanobacterial mats that are freeze-dried through the winter and begin photosynthesis with the onset of flow. Thus, the daily signal in terms of biogeochemical processes controlling water quality is generated within the stream. As part of the McMurdo Dry Valleys Long Term Ecological Research project, we have conducted field experiments and developed coupled biogeochemical transport models for the role of hyporheic exchange in controlling weathering of major ions, microbial cycling of nitrogen species, and streams temperature regulation. We have also adapted modelling approaches from sediment transport to understand mobilization of stream biomass with increasing flows. These models are relevant to understanding the role of in-stream processes in diverse stream systems where watershed processes also contribute to observed patterns. In the future, monitored data may be directly incorporated into such process models to better understand rapid hydrologic change and their impact on water quality and aquatic ecosystems.

  17. Adaptations of Phytoplankton to Sunlight and Other Optical Properties of Aquatic Ecosystem Particles Detected With a Portable Integrating Sphere Version of QFT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hargreaves, B. R.

    2006-12-01

    Suspended particles in aquatic ecosystems include autotrophic and heterotrophic micro-organisms, organic detritus, and suspended mineral particles. Spectral optical properties of these particles can be useful in characterizing the attenuation of sunlight underwater, the distribution and types of organisms, and their biological response to the underwater physical gradients, including photosynthesis and the release of dissolved organic matter. Recent measurements of spectral absorption of phytoplankton exposed to strong ultraviolet radiation (UVR) near the surface and declining irradiance with depth have shown a tendency to produce natural UV-B sunscreen compounds (MAA's) in proportion to the intensity of exposure to UV-B. A down-regulation of chlorophyll-a pigment with increasing intensity of visible wavelengths is well known. Some recent data also suggest a negative correlation between phytoplankton biomass and water column exposure to UV-B as mediated by stratospheric ozone. The standard method of characterizing the spectral optical properties of particles in aquatic ecosystems is the Quantitative Filterpad Technique (QFT) in which a water sample is concentrated on a fine glass fiber filter (GFF) and its optical density is then measured in the beam of a scanning spectrophotometer. An improved QFT method (QFT-TR) established in the past decade involves laboratory measurement of both transmittance and reflectance for each sample using an integrating sphere attachment in a scanning spectrophotometer. Both methods have disadvantages. Particle spectral data from a number of freshwater ecosystems were collected using a new battery-powered instrument that combines integrating sphere, lamp, and fiber optic spectrometer to create a portable improved QFT (pQFT-TR). Transmittance, reflectances, and absorbance spectra for particles from streams (rich in mineral particles) and lakes (some with humic particles, others with predominantly phytoplankton) are compared using the old

  18. Endosulfan and its metabolite, endosulfan sulfate, in freshwater ecosystems of South Florida: a probabilistic aquatic ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Rand, Gary M; Carriger, John F; Gardinali, Piero R; Castro, Joffre

    2010-06-01

    Endosulfan is an insecticide-acaricide used in South Florida and is one of the remaining organochlorine insecticides registered under the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act by the U.S.EPA. The technical grade material consists of two isomers (alpha-, beta-) and the main environmental metabolite in water, sediment and tissue is endosulfan sulfate through oxidation. A comprehensive probabilistic aquatic ecological risk assessment was conducted to determine the potential risks of existing exposures to endosulfan and endosulfan sulfate in freshwaters of South Florida based on historical data (1992-2007). The assessment included hazard assessment (Tier 1) followed by probabilistic risk assessment (Tier 2). Tier 1 compared actual measured concentrations in surface freshwaters of 47 sites in South Florida from historical data to U.S.EPA numerical water quality criteria. Based on results of Tier 1, Tier 2 focused on the acute and chronic risks of endosulfan at nine sites by comparing distributions of surface water exposure concentrations of endosulfan [i.e., for total endosulfan (summation of concentrations of alpha- and beta-isomers plus the sulfate), alpha- plus beta-endosulfan, and endosulfan sulfate (alone)] with distributions of species effects from laboratory toxicity data. In Tier 2 the distribution of total endosulfan in fish tissue (whole body) from South Florida freshwaters was also used to determine the probability of exceeding a distribution of whole body residues of endosulfan producing mortality (critical lethal residues). Tier 1 showed the majority of endosulfan water quality violations in South Florida were at locations S-178 followed by S-177 in the C-111 system (southeastern boundary of Everglades National Park (ENP)). Nine surface water sampling sites were chosen for Tier 2. Tier 2 showed the highest potentially affected fraction of toxicity values (>10%) by the estimated 90th centile exposure concentration (total endosulfan) was at S-178

  19. Radionuclide transport and uptake in coastal aquatic ecosystems: a comparison of a 3D dynamic model and a compartment model.

    PubMed

    Erichsen, Anders Christian; Konovalenko, Lena; Møhlenberg, Flemming; Closter, Rikke Margrethe; Bradshaw, Clare; Aquilonius, Karin; Kautsky, Ulrik

    2013-05-01

    In safety assessments of underground radioactive waste repositories, understanding radionuclide fate in ecosystems is necessary to determine the impacts of potential releases. Here, the reliability of two mechanistic models (the compartmental K-model and the 3D dynamic D-model) in describing the fate of radionuclides released into a Baltic Sea bay is tested. Both are based on ecosystem models that simulate the cycling of organic matter (carbon). Radionuclide transfer is linked to adsorption and flows of carbon in food chains. Accumulation of Th-230, Cs-135, and Ni-59 in biological compartments was comparable between the models and site measurements despite differences in temporal resolution, biological state variables, and partition coefficients. Both models provided confidence limits for their modeled concentration ratios, an improvement over models that only estimate means. The D-model enables estimates at high spatio-temporal resolution. The K-model, being coarser but faster, allows estimates centuries ahead. Future developments could integrate the two models to take advantage of their respective strengths.

  20. Multiparametric approach for assessing environmental quality variations in West African aquatic ecosystems using the black-chinned tilapia (Sarotherodon melanotheron) as a sentinel species.

    PubMed

    Ndiaye, Awa; Sanchez, Wilfried; Durand, Jean-Dominique; Budzinski, Hélène; Palluel, Olivier; Diouf, Khady; Ndiaye, Papa; Panfili, Jacques

    2012-11-01

    The study highlights the potential of the black-chinned tilapia to be used as a sentinel to assess environmental contaminants based on the use of a set of biomarkers. The usefulness of fish species as sentinels for assessing aquatic environment contamination was tested using a set of biomarkers in Senegalese environments characterized by multi-pollution sources. The black-chinned tilapia (Sarotherodon melanotheron) was selected as a sentinel because of its abundance, wide distribution in all coastal aquatic ecosystems and physiological properties. The potential influence of confounding factors such as salinity on biomarker in the tilapia has been examined. Individuals were sampled during two seasons (dry and wet) in eight sites characterized by various degrees of anthropogenic contamination and different salinities (from 0 to 102 psu). Biomarkers-including growth rate (GR), condition factor (CF), biotransformation enzymes such as 7-ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) and glutathione-S-transferase (GST), lipid peroxidation (TBARS) and acetylcholinesterase (AChE)-were measured. Chemical contaminant [polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine pesticides (OCPs)] levels showed different sources of contamination with relatively high concentrations of PAHs in the Hann Bay and Foundiougne locations. The most sensitive biomarker present in different sites according to the principal component analysis is EROD. Few variations of the AChE activity and TBARS levels were found. No clear relationship was found between biomarker responses and salinity, but GR and CF were lower in hypersaline conditions. Tilapia is responsive to environmental contaminants such as PAHs, OCPs and PCBs. The S. melanotheron multiparametric approach showed a better discrimination of sites.

  1. Community structure of fishes inhabiting aquatic refuges in a threatened Karst wetland and its implications for ecosystem management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kobza, Robert M.; Trexler, J.C.; Loftus, W.F.; Perry, S.A.

    2004-01-01

    We illustrate the importance of subsurface refuges for conservation of aquatic fauna with our studies of karstic wetlands in Everglades National Park, Florida, USA. Managers have proposed that water levels there should not fall more than 46 cm below ground level for more than 90 days annually. In four areas, 84% of solution holes were less than 46 cm deep and holes deeper than lm were rare (<3 km-2). Null-model analysis indicated no "structure" in the solution-hole fish communities early in the dry season, but that structure emerged as drying progressed. Native cyprinodontiforms were abundant in shallow solution holes that dry annually under current management, while predatory species (often non-native) tended to dominate deeper holes. Water quality was correlated with hole volume and with composition of late dry-season fish communities. Tremendous losses of fish biomass occurred when water levels fell below 46 cm from ground surface. Most native taxa were unlikely to survive in the deep refuges that held predatory non-native taxa. ?? 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. The McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica: Terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems responding to climatic events that enhance hydrologic transport acress the landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKnight, D. M.; Lyons, W. B.; Fountain, A. G.; Gooseff, M. N.; Doran, P. T.; Wall, D. H.; Virginia, R. A.; Priscu, J. C.; Adams, B.; Vesbach-Takacs, C.; Barrett, J. E.; Howkins, A.

    2014-12-01

    The McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica is comprised of alpine and terminal glaciers, large expanses of patterned ground, and permanently ice-covered lakes in the valley floors, which are linked by glacial meltwater streams that flow during the austral summer. These valleys were first explored by Robert Scott and his party in 1903. In 1968 the New Zealand Antarctic Program began a gauging network on the Onyx River, a 32 km river in Wright Valley which is the longest river in Antarctica. As part of the McMurdo Dry Valleys Long-Term Ecological research project our research group has monitored meteorological conditions, glacial mass balance, lake level and streamflow in the adjacent Taylor Valley. The extent of liquid water throughout the landscape is strongly controlled by summer climate, and the availability of liquid water in turn is a limitation to the microscopic life that is present in the diverse habitats in the valleys. We have studied the responses of soil, lake, stream and cryoconite ecosystems through a sustained cooling period that has been driven by atmospheric changes associated with the ozone hole. In the past decade, this cooling period appears to have ceased and summer conditions have become more variable. Three warm sunny summers have occurred since 2001/02. These conditions have created weeks long "flood events" in the valleys, causing wet areas to emerge in the soils, thermokarsting in some stream channels and increases in lake level. These flood events can be considered as pulse events that drive an increase in ecosystem connectivity, changing rates of biogeochemical processes and the distribution of biota. Collectively the ecosystems of the McMurdo Dry Valleys are highly responsive to dynamic climatic influences associated with the ozone hole and global warming.

  3. Modeling of hydroecological feedbacks predicts distinct classes of landscape pattern, process, and restoration potential in shallow aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larsen, Laurel G.; Harvey, Judson W.

    2011-01-01

    In general, the stability of different wetland pattern types is most strongly related to factors controlling the erosion and deposition of sediment at vegetation patch edges, the magnitude of sediment redistribution by flow, patch elevation relative to water level, and the variability of erosion rates in vegetation patches with low flow-resistance. As we exemplify in our case-study of the Everglades ridge and slough landscape, feedback between flow and vegetation also causes hysteresis in landscape evolution trajectories that will affect the potential for landscape restoration. Namely, even if the hydrologic conditions that historically produced higher flows are restored, degraded portions of the ridge and slough landscape are unlikely to revert to their former patterning. As wetlands and floodplains worldwide become increasingly threatened by climate change and urbanization, the greater mechanistic understanding of landscape pattern and process that our analysis provides will improve our ability to forecast and manage the behavior of these ecosystems.

  4. Biochemical responses of filamentous algae in different aquatic ecosystems in South East Turkey and associated water quality parameters.

    PubMed

    Çelekli, Abuzer; Arslanargun, Hamdullah; Soysal, Çiğdem; Gültekin, Emine; Bozkurt, Hüseyin

    2016-11-01

    To the best of our knowledge, any study about biochemical response of filamentous algae in the complex freshwater ecosystems has not been found in the literature. This study was designed to explore biochemical response of filamentous algae in different water bodies from May 2013 to October 2014, using multivariate approach in the South East of Turkey. Environmental variables were measured in situ: water temperature, oxygen concentration, saturation, conductivity, salinity, pH, redox potential, and total dissolved solid. Chemical variables of aqueous samples and biochemical compounds of filamentous algae were also measured. It was found that geographic position and anthropogenic activities had strong effect on physico-chemical variables of water bodies. Variation in environmental conditions caused change in algal biomass composition due to the different response of filamentous species, also indicated by FTIR analysis. Biochemical responses not only changed from species to species, but also varied for the same species at different sampling time and sampling stations. Multivariate analyses showed that heavy metals, nutrients, and water hardness were found as the important variables governing the temporal and spatial succession and biochemical compounds. Nutrients, especially nitrate, could stimulate pigment and total protein production, whereas high metal content had adverse effects. Amount of malondialdehyde (MDA), H2O2, total thiol groups, total phenolic compounds, proline, total carbohydrate, and metal bioaccumulation by filamentous algae could be closely related with heavy metals in the ecosystems. Significant increase in MDA, H2O2, total thiol group, total phenolic compounds, and proline productions by filamentous algae and chlorosis phenomenon seemed to be an important strategy for alleviating environmental factors-induced oxidative stress as biomarkers.

  5. Predicting organic floc transport dynamics in shallow aquatic ecosystems: insights from the field, laboratory, and numerical modeling.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harvey, Judson W.; Noe, Gregory B.; Larsen, Laurel G.; Crimaldi, John P.

    2009-01-01

    Transport of particulate organic material can impact watershed sediment and nutrient budgets and can alter the geomorphologic evolution of shallow aquatic environments. Prediction of organic aggregate (“floc”) transport in these environments requires knowledge of how hydraulics and biota affect the entrainment, settling, and aggregation of particles. This study evaluated the aggregation and field transport dynamics of organic floc from a low-gradient floodplain wetland with flow-parallel ridges and sloughs in the Florida Everglades. Floc dynamics were evaluated in a rotating annular flume and in situ in the field. Under present managed conditions in the Everglades, floc is not entrained by mean flows but is suspended via biological production in the water column and bioturbation. Aggregation was a significant process affecting Everglades floc at high flume flow velocities (7.0 cm s-1) and during recovery from high flow; disaggregation was not significant for the tested flows. During moderate flows when floc dynamics are hydrodynamically controlled, it is possible to model floc transport using a single “operative floc diameter” that accurately predicts fluxes downstream and to the bed. In contrast, during high flows and recovery from high flows, aggregation dynamics should be simulated. When entrained by flow in open-water sloughs, Everglades floc will be transported downstream in multiple deposition and reentrainment events but will undergo net settling when transported onto ridges of emergent vegetation. We hypothesize that net transport of material from open to vegetated areas during high flows is critical for forming and maintaining distinctive topographic patterning in the Everglades and other low-gradient floodplains.

  6. Predicting organic floc transport dynamics in shallow aquatic ecosystems: Insights from the field, the laboratory, and numerical modeling

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larsen, L.G.; Harvey, J.W.; Noe, G.B.; Crimaldi, J.P.

    2009-01-01

    Transport of particulate organic material can impact watershed sediment and nutrient budgets and can alter the geomorphologic evolution of shallow aquatic environments. Prediction of organic aggregate ("floc") transport in these environments requires knowledge of how hydraulics and biota affect the entrainment, settling, and aggregation of particles. This study evaluated the aggregation and field transport dynamics of organic floc from a low-gradient floodplain wetland with flow-parallel ridges and sloughs in the Florida Everglades. floc dynamics were evaluated in a rotating annular flume and in situ in the field. Under present managed conditions in the Everglades, floc is not entrained by mean flows but is suspended via biological production in the water column and bioturbation. Aggregation was a significant process affecting Everglades floc at high flume flow velocities (7.0 cm s-1) and during recovery from high flow; disaggregation was not significant for the tested flows. During moderate flows when floc dynamics are hydrodynamically controlled, it is possible to model floc transport using a single "operative floc diameter" that accurately predicts fluxes downstream and to the bed. In contrast, during high flows and recovery from high flows, aggregation dynamics should be simulated. When entrained by flow in open-water sloughs, Everglades floc will be transported downstream in multiple deposition and reentrainment events but will undergo net settling when transported onto ridges of emergent vegetation. We hypothesize that net transport of material from open to vegetated areas during high flows is critical for forming and maintaining distinctive topographic patterning in the Everglades and other low-gradient floodplains. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

  7. The ``C.E.B.A.S. MINI-MODULE'': A self-sustaining closed aquatic ecosystem for spaceflight experimentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blüm, V.; Andriske, M.; Ludwig, Ch.; Paaßen, U.; Voeste, D.

    The C.E.B.A.S. MINI-MODULE is the miniaturized space flight version of the Closed Equilibrated Biological Aquatic System (C.E.B.A.S.). It fits into a large middeck locker tray and is scheduled to be flown in the STS 85 and in the NEUROLAB missions. Its volume is about 9 liters and it consists of two animal tanks, a plant cultivator, and a bacteria filter in a monolithic design. An external sensor unit is connected to a data acquisition/control unit. The system integrates its own biological life support. The CO2 exhaled by the consumers (fishes, snails, microorganisms) is assimilated by water plants (Ceratophyllum demersum) which provide them with oxygen. The products of biomass degradation and excretion (mainly ammonia ions) are converted by bacteria into nitrite and nitrate. The latter is taken up by the plants as a nitrogen source together with other ions like phosphate. The plants convert light energy into chemical energy and their illumination is regulated via the oxygen concentration in the water by the control unit. In ground laboratory tests the system exhibited biological stability up to three month. The buffer capacity of the biological filter system is high enough to eliminate the degradation products of about one half of the dead animal biomass as shown in a ``crash test''. A test series using the laboratory model of the flight hardware demonstrated the biological stability and technical reliability with mission-identical loading and test duration. A comprehensive biological research program is established for the C.E.B.A.S. MINI-MODULE in which five German and three U.S.-American universities as well as the Russian Academy of Sciences are involved.

  8. Calcium Carbonate Phosphate Binding Ion Exchange Filtration and Accelerated Denitrification Improve Public Health Standards and Combat Eutrophication in Aquatic Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Yanamadala, Vijay

    2010-01-01

    Cultural eutrophication, the process by which a lake becomes rich in dissolved nutrients as a result of point and nonpoint pollutant sources, is a major cause of the loss of natural lake ecosystems throughout the world. The process occurs naturally in all lakes, but phosphate-rich nutrient runoff from sources such as storm drains and agricultural runoff is a major cause of excess phosphate-induced eutrophication. Especially in Madrona Marsh, one of the last remaining vernal marshes in the greater Los Angeles area, California, cultural eutrophication has become a major problem. In this study, calcium carbonate was found to be an excellent phosphate binder, reducing up to 70% of the phosphates in a given sample of water, and it posed relatively negligent ecological repercussions. This study involved the testing of this principle in both the laboratory and the real ecosystem. A calcium carbonate lacing procedure was first carried out to determine its efficacy in Madrona Marsh. Through this, ammonia was found to interfere with the solubility of calcium carbonate and therefore to be a hindrance to the reduction of phosphate. Therefore, various approaches for reduction of ammonia were tested, including aeration, use of fiber growth media, and plants, mainly Caulerpa verticellata, chosen for it hardiness, primarily in an attempt to increase population of Nitrobacter and Nitrosomonas. All were successful in moderately reducing ammonia levels. In addition, soil sampling, sediment analysis, microscopic plant analysis, microorganism and macroinvertebrate identification, and rate law formulations were conducted. The effect of phosphate and ammonia reduction on the populations of enterobacteria was also an important focus of this experiment. Varying concentrations of phosphate, ammonia, and calcium carbonate in conjunction with phosphate were tested in Madrona Marsh to determine their effects on the populations of enteropathogens on nonspecific blood agar, MacConkey agar, and

  9. The role of UV-B radiation in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems--an experimental and functional analysis of the evolution of UV-absorbing compounds.

    PubMed

    Rozema, J; Björn, L O; Bornman, J F; Gaberscik, A; Häder, D-P; Trost, T; Germ, M; Klisch, M; Gröniger, A; Sinha, R P; Lebert, M; He, Y-Y; Buffoni-Hall, R; de Bakker, N V J; van de Staaij, J; Meijkamp, B B

    2002-02-01

    We analysed and compared the functioning of UV-B screening pigments in plants from marine, fresh water and terrestrial ecosystems, along the evolutionary line of cyanobacteria, unicellular algae, primitive multicellular algae, charophycean algae, lichens, mosses and higher plants, including amphibious macrophytes. Lichens were also included in the study. We were interested in the following key aspects: (a) does the water column function effectively as an 'external UV-B filter'?; (b) do aquatic plants need less 'internal UV-B screening' than terrestrial plants?; (c) what role does UV screening play in protecting the various plant groups from UV-B damage, such as the formation of thymine dimers?; and (d) since early land 'plants' (such as the predecessors of present-day cyanobacteria, lichens and mosses) experienced higher UV-B fluxes than higher plants, which evolved later, are primitive aquatic and land organisms (cyanobacteria, algae, lichens, mosses) better adapted to present-day levels of UV-B than higher plants? Furthermore, polychromatic action spectra for the induction of UV screening pigments of aquatic organisms have been determined. This is relevant for translating 'physical' radiation measurements of solar UV-B into 'biological' and 'ecological' effects. From the action spectra, radiation amplification factors (RAFs) have been calculated. These action spectra allow us to determine any mitigating or antagonistic effects in the ecosystems and therefore qualify the damage prediction for the ecosystems under study. We summarize and discuss the main results based on three years of research of four European research groups. The central theme of the work was the investigation of the effectiveness of the various screening compounds from the different species studied in order to gain some perspective of the evolutionary adaptations from lower to higher plant forms. The induction of mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) was studied in the marine dinoflagellate

  10. Review of the effects of in-stream pipeline crossing construction on aquatic ecosystems and examination of Canadian methodologies for impact assessment.

    PubMed

    Lévesque, Lucie M; Dubé, Monique G

    2007-09-01

    Pipeline crossing construction alters river and stream channels, hence may have detrimental effects on aquatic ecosystems. This review examines the effects of crossing construction on fish and fish habitat in rivers and streams, and recommends an approach to monitoring and assessment of impacts associated with these activities. Pipeline crossing construction is shown to not only compromise the integrity of the physical and chemical nature of fish habitat, but also to affect biological habitat (e.g., benthic invertebrates and invertebrate drift), and fish behavior and physiology. Indicators of effect include: water quality (total suspended solids TSS), physical habitat (substrate particle size, channel morphology), benthic invertebrate community structure and drift (abundance, species composition, diversity, standing crop), and fish behavior and physiology (hierarchy, feeding, respiration rate, loss of equilibrium, blood hematocrit and leukocrit levels, heart rate and stroke volume). The Before-After-Control-Impact (BACI) approach, which is often applied in Environmental Effects Monitoring (EEM), is recommended as a basis for impact assessment, as is consideration of site-specific sensitivities, assessment of significance, and cumulative effects.

  11. Distribution of trace elements in the aquatic ecosystem of the Thigithe river and the fish Labeo victorianus in Tanzania and possible risks for human consumption.

    PubMed

    Mataba, Gordian Rocky; Verhaert, Vera; Blust, Ronny; Bervoets, Lieven

    2016-03-15

    The aim of the present study was to assess the distribution of trace elements in the aquatic ecosystem of the Thigithe river. Samples of surface water, sediment and fish were collected up- and downstream of the North Mara Gold Mine (Tanzania) and following trace elements were analysed: As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb and Zn. Trace element concentrations in surface water were below or near the detection limit. Regarding the sediments, relative high concentrations of arsenic at all sites and high levels of mercury at a site downstream of the mine where artisanal mining is performed were observed. Trace element concentrations in Ningu fish tissues (Labeo victorianus) were comparable to slightly higher than levels in fishes from unpolluted environments. For none of the measured human health risk by consumption of fish from the Thigithe river is expected when the Tanzanian average amount of 17 g/day is consumed. However, for Hg and As the advised maximum daily consumption of Ningu fish was lower than 100g. As a result fishermen and people living along the shores of the river consuming more fish than the average Tanzanian fish consumption set by the FAO (2005) are possibly at risk.

  12. The effect of turbidity on recognition and generalization of predators and non-predators in aquatic ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Chivers, Douglas P; Al-Batati, Fawaz; Brown, Grant E; Ferrari, Maud C O

    2013-01-01

    Recent anthropogenic activities have caused a considerable change in the turbidity of freshwater and marine ecosystems. Concomitant with such perturbations are changes in community composition. Understanding the mechanisms through which species interactions are influenced by anthropogenic change has come to the forefront of many ecological disciplines. Here, we examine how a change in the availability of visual information influences the behavior of prey fish exposed to potential predators and non-predators. When fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas, were conditioned to recognize predators and non-predators in clear water, they showed a highly sophisticated ability to distinguish predators from non-predators. However, when learning occurred under conditions of increased turbidity, the ability of the prey to learn and generalize recognition of predators and non-predators was severely impaired. Our work highlights that changes at the community level associated with anthropogenic perturbations may be mediated through altered trophic interactions, and highlights the need to closely examine behavioral interactions to understand how species interactions change. PMID:23467451

  13. Climate and hydrological changes in the northeastern United States: recent trends and implications for forested and aquatic ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Huntington, Thomas G.; Richardson, Andrew D.; McGuire, Kevin J.; Hayhoe, Katharine

    2009-01-01

    We review twentieth century and projected twenty-first century changes in climatic and hydrologic conditions in the northeastern United States and the implications of these changes for forest ecosystems. Climate warming and increases in precipitation and associated changes in snow and hydrologic regimes have been observed over the last century, with the most pronounced changes occurring since 1970. Trends in specific climatic and hydrologic variables differ in their responses spatially (e.g., coastal vs. inland) and temporally (e.g., spring vs. summer). Trends can differ depending on the period of record analyzed, hinting at the role of decadal-scale climatic variation that is superimposed over the longer-term trend. Model predictions indicate that continued increases in temperature and precipitation across the northeastern United States can be expected over the next century. Ongoing increases in growing season length (earlier spring and later autumn) will most likely increase evapotranspiration and frequency of drought. In turn, an increase in the frequency of drought will likely increase the risk of fire and negatively impact forest productivity, maple syrup production, and the intensity of autumn foliage coloration. Climate and hydrologic changes could have profound effects on forest structure, composition, and ecological functioning in response to the changes discussed here and as described in related articles in this issue of the Journal.

  14. An integrated approach to model the biomagnification of organic pollutants in aquatic food webs of the Yangtze Three Gorges Reservoir ecosystem using adapted pollution scenarios.

    PubMed

    Scholz-Starke, Björn; Ottermanns, Richard; Rings, Ursula; Floehr, Tilman; Hollert, Henner; Hou, Junli; Li, Bo; Wu, Ling Ling; Yuan, Xingzhong; Strauch, Katrin; Wei, Hu; Norra, Stefan; Holbach, Andreas; Westrich, Bernhard; Schäffer, Andreas; Roß-Nickoll, Martina

    2013-10-01

    The impounding of the Three Gorges Reservoir (TGR) at the Yangtze River caused large flooding of urban, industrial, and agricultural areas, and profound land use changes took place. Consequently, substantial amounts of organic and inorganic pollutants were released into the reservoir. Additionally, contaminants and nutrients are entering the reservoir by drift, drainage, and runoff from adjacent agricultural areas as well as from sewage of industry, aquacultures, and households. The main aim of the presented research project is a deeper understanding of the processes that determines the bioaccumulation and biomagnification of organic pollutants, i.e., mainly pesticides, in aquatic food webs under the newly developing conditions of the TGR. The project is part of the Yangtze-Hydro environmental program, financed by the German Ministry of Education and Science. In order to test combinations of environmental factors like nutrients and pollution, we use an integrated modeling approach to study the potential accumulation and biomagnification. We describe the integrative modeling approach and the consecutive adaption of the AQUATOX model, used as modeling framework for ecological risk assessment. As a starting point, pre-calibrated simulations were adapted to Yangtze-specific conditions (regionalization). Two exemplary food webs were developed by a thorough review of the pertinent literature. The first typical for the flowing conditions of the original Yangtze River and the Daning River near the city of Wushan, and the second for the stagnant reservoir characteristics of the aforementioned region that is marked by an intermediate between lake and large river communities of aquatic organisms. In close cooperation with German and Chinese partners of the Yangtze-Hydro Research Association, other site-specific parameters were estimated. The MINIBAT project contributed to the calibration of physicochemical and bathymetric parameters, and the TRANSMIC project delivered

  15. Using High-Resolution Models to Predict the Effects of Climate Change on Aquatic Ecosystems in the Crown of the Continent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, L.; Muhlfeld, C.; Marshall, L. A.

    2013-12-01

    Climate trends and projections have prompted interest in assessing the thermal sensitivity of aquatic species. How species will adapt and respond to these changes is uncertain, however, climatic and hydrologic changes may shift species habitat distributions and physiological functions both spatially and temporally. This is particularly true for salmonids (e.g., trout, char, and salmon), which are cold-water species strongly influenced by changes in temperature, flow, and physical habitat conditions. Therefore, understanding how habitats are likely to change and how species may respond to changes in climatic conditions is critical for developing conservation and management strategies. The purpose of this study is to develop a high-resolution stream temperature model for the Crown of the Continent Ecosystem (CCE) to simulate potential climate change impacts on thermal regimes throughout the riverscape. A spatially explicit statistical regression model is coupled with high-resolution climate data such as air temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, baseflow and surface runoff. This empirically based model is used to predict daily stream temperatures under historic, current and forecasted climate conditions. The model is parameterized with empirical stream temperature data, which has been gathered from agencies across the region. The current database of empirical stream temperature data consists of over 800 sites throughout the CCE, which provide time series data to the model application. The biological integration and application of this model is on bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) populations within the CCE. The model will be used to assess species vulnerabilities caused by spatial and temporal changes in stream temperature and hydrology. By evaluating the magnitude, timing and duration of climatic changes on the riverscape, we can more accurately assess potential vulnerabilities of critical life history traits, such as growth potential, spawning migrations

  16. Variability of rRNA Operon Copy Number and Growth Rate Dynamics of Bacillus Isolated from an Extremely Oligotrophic Aquatic Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Valdivia-Anistro, Jorge A.; Eguiarte-Fruns, Luis E.; Delgado-Sapién, Gabriela; Márquez-Zacarías, Pedro; Gasca-Pineda, Jaime; Learned, Jennifer; Elser, James J.; Olmedo-Alvarez, Gabriela; Souza, Valeria

    2016-01-01

    The ribosomal RNA (rrn) operon is a key suite of genes related to the production of protein synthesis machinery and thus to bacterial growth physiology. Experimental evidence has suggested an intrinsic relationship between the number of copies of this operon and environmental resource availability, especially the availability of phosphorus (P), because bacteria that live in oligotrophic ecosystems usually have few rrn operons and a slow growth rate. The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin (CCB) is a complex aquatic ecosystem that contains an unusually high microbial diversity that is able to persist under highly oligotrophic conditions. These environmental conditions impose a variety of strong selective pressures that shape the genome dynamics of their inhabitants. The genus Bacillus is one of the most abundant cultivable bacterial groups in the CCB and usually possesses a relatively large number of rrn operon copies (6–15 copies). The main goal of this study was to analyze the variation in the number of rrn operon copies of Bacillus in the CCB and to assess their growth-related properties as well as their stoichiometric balance (N and P content). We defined 18 phylogenetic groups within the Bacilli clade and documented a range of from six to 14 copies of the rrn operon. The growth dynamic of these Bacilli was heterogeneous and did not show a direct relation to the number of operon copies. Physiologically, our results were not consistent with the Growth Rate Hypothesis, since the copies of the rrn operon were decoupled from growth rate. However, we speculate that the diversity of the growth properties of these Bacilli as well as the low P content of their cells in an ample range of rrn copy number is an adaptive response to oligotrophy of the CCB and could represent an ecological mechanism that allows these taxa to coexist. These findings increase the knowledge of the variability in the number of copies of the rrn operon in the genus Bacillus and give insights about the

  17. Variability of rRNA Operon Copy Number and Growth Rate Dynamics of Bacillus Isolated from an Extremely Oligotrophic Aquatic Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Valdivia-Anistro, Jorge A; Eguiarte-Fruns, Luis E; Delgado-Sapién, Gabriela; Márquez-Zacarías, Pedro; Gasca-Pineda, Jaime; Learned, Jennifer; Elser, James J; Olmedo-Alvarez, Gabriela; Souza, Valeria

    2015-01-01

    The ribosomal RNA (rrn) operon is a key suite of genes related to the production of protein synthesis machinery and thus to bacterial growth physiology. Experimental evidence has suggested an intrinsic relationship between the number of copies of this operon and environmental resource availability, especially the availability of phosphorus (P), because bacteria that live in oligotrophic ecosystems usually have few rrn operons and a slow growth rate. The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin (CCB) is a complex aquatic ecosystem that contains an unusually high microbial diversity that is able to persist under highly oligotrophic conditions. These environmental conditions impose a variety of strong selective pressures that shape the genome dynamics of their inhabitants. The genus Bacillus is one of the most abundant cultivable bacterial groups in the CCB and usually possesses a relatively large number of rrn operon copies (6-15 copies). The main goal of this study was to analyze the variation in the number of rrn operon copies of Bacillus in the CCB and to assess their growth-related properties as well as their stoichiometric balance (N and P content). We defined 18 phylogenetic groups within the Bacilli clade and documented a range of from six to 14 copies of the rrn operon. The growth dynamic of these Bacilli was heterogeneous and did not show a direct relation to the number of operon copies. Physiologically, our results were not consistent with the Growth Rate Hypothesis, since the copies of the rrn operon were decoupled from growth rate. However, we speculate that the diversity of the growth properties of these Bacilli as well as the low P content of their cells in an ample range of rrn copy number is an adaptive response to oligotrophy of the CCB and could represent an ecological mechanism that allows these taxa to coexist. These findings increase the knowledge of the variability in the number of copies of the rrn operon in the genus Bacillus and give insights about the

  18. Constructed wetlands to reduce metal pollution from industrial catchments in aquatic Mediterranean ecosystems: a review to overcome obstacles and suggest potential solutions.

    PubMed

    Guittonny-Philippe, Anna; Masotti, Véronique; Höhener, Patrick; Boudenne, Jean-Luc; Viglione, Julien; Laffont-Schwob, Isabelle

    2014-03-01

    In the Mediterranean area, surface waters often have low discharge or renewal rates, hence metal contamination from industrialised catchments can have a high negative impact on the physico-chemical and biological water quality. In a context of climate and anthropological changes, it is necessary to provide an integrative approach for the prevention and control of metal pollution, in order to limit its impact on water resources, biodiversity, trophic network and human health. For this purpose, introduction of constructed wetlands (CWs) between natural aquatic ecosystems and industrialised zones or catchments is a promising strategy for eco-remediation. Analysis of the literature has shown that further research must be done to improve CW design, selection and management of wetland plant species and catchment organisation, in order to ensure the effectiveness of CWs in Mediterranean environments. Firstly, the parameters of basin design that have the greatest influence on metal removal processes must be identified, in order to better focus rhizospheric processes on specific purification objectives. We have summarised in a single diagram the relationships between the design parameters of a CW basin and the physico-chemical and biological processes of metal removal, on the basis of 21 mutually consistent papers. Secondly, in order to optimise the selection and distribution of helophytes in CWs, it is necessary to identify criteria of choice for the plant species that will best fit the remediation objectives and environmental and economic constraints. We have analysed the factors determining plant metal uptake efficiency in CWs on the basis of a qualitative meta-analysis of 13 studies with a view to determine whether the part played by metal uptake by plants is relevant in comparison with the other removal processes. Thirdly, we analysed the parameters to consider for establishing suitable management strategies for CWs and how they affect the whole CW design process

  19. Steady-state sulfur critical loads and exceedances for protection of aquatic ecosystems in the U.S. Southern Appalachian Mountains.

    PubMed

    McDonnell, Todd C; Sullivan, Timothy J; Hessburg, Paul F; Reynolds, Keith M; Povak, Nicholas A; Cosby, Bernard J; Jackson, William; Salter, R Brion

    2014-12-15

    Atmospherically deposited sulfur (S) causes stream water acidification throughout the eastern U.S. Southern Appalachian Mountain (SAM) region. Acidification has been linked with reduced fitness and richness of aquatic species and changes to benthic communities. Maintaining acid-base chemistry that supports native biota depends largely on balancing acidic deposition with the natural resupply of base cations. Stream water acid neutralizing capacity (ANC) is maintained by base cations that mostly originate from weathering of surrounding lithologies. When ambient atmospheric S deposition exceeds the critical load (CL) an ecosystem can tolerate, stream water chemistry may become lethal to biota. This work links statistical predictions of ANC and base cation weathering for streams and watersheds of the SAM region with a steady-state model to estimate CLs and exceedances. Results showed that 20.1% of the total length of study region streams displayed ANC <100 μeq∙L(-1), a level at which effects to biota may be anticipated; most were 4th or lower order streams. Nearly one-third of the stream length within the study region exhibited CLs of S deposition <50 meq∙m(-2)∙yr(-1), which is less than the regional average S deposition of 60 meq∙m(-2)∙yr(-1). Owing to their geologic substrates, relatively high elevation, and cool and moist forested conditions, the percentage of stream length in exceedance was highest for mountain wilderness areas and in national parks, and lowest for privately owned valley bottom land. Exceedance results were summarized by 12-digit hydrologic unit code (subwatershed) for use in developing management goals and policy objectives, and for long-term monitoring.

  20. Phytoplankton and nutrient distributions in a front-eddy area adjacent to the coastal upwelling zone off Concepcion (Chile): implications for ecosystem productivity.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morales, Carmen; Anabalón, Valeria; Hormazábal, Samuel; Cornejo, Marcela; Bento, Joaquim; Silva, Nelson

    2016-04-01

    exportation of coastal communities to the open ocean in this region. We discuss how this interaction might affect ecosystem productivity in the coastal band.

  1. KABAM Version 1.0 User's Guide and Technical Documentation - Appendix C - Explanation of Default Values Representing Biotic Characteristics of Aquatic Ecosystem, Including Food Web Structure

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Information relevant to KABAM and explanations of default parameters used to define the 7 trophic levels. KABAM is a simulation model used to predict pesticide concentrations in aquatic regions for use in exposure assessments.

  2. Describing Anopheles arabiensis aquatic habitats in two riceland agro-ecosystems in Mwea, Kenya using a negative binomial regression model with a non-homogenous mean.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Benjamin G; Griffith, Daniel; Muturi, Ephantus; Caamano, Erick X; Shililu, Josephat; Githure, John I; Novak, Robert J

    2009-01-01

    This research illustrates a geostatistical approach for modeling the spatial distribution patterns of Anopheles arabiensis Patton (Patton) aquatic habitats in two riceland environments. QuickBird 0.61 m data, encompassing the visible bands and the near-infra-red (NIR) band, were selected to synthesize images of An. arabiensis aquatic habitats. These bands and field sampled data were used to determine ecological parameters associated with riceland larval habitat development. SAS was used to calculate univariate statistics, correlations and Poisson regression models. Global autocorrelation statistics were generated in ArcGISfrom georeferenced Anopheles aquatic habitats in the study sites. The geographic distribution of Anopheles gambiae s.l. aquatic habitats in the study sites exhibited weak positive autocorrelation; similar numbers of log-larval count habitats tend to clustered in space. Individual rice land habitat data were further evaluated in terms of their covariations with spatial autocorrelation, by regressing them on candidate spatial filter eigenvectors. Each eigenvector generated from a geographically weighted matrix, for both study sites, revealed a distinctive spatial pattern. The spatial autocorrelation components suggest the presence of roughly 14-30% redundant information in the aquatic habitat larval count samples. Synthetic map pattern variables furnish a method of capturing spatial dependency effects in the mean response term in regression analyses of rice land An. arabiensis aquatic habitat data.

  3. Aquatic macroinvertebrates associated with Eichhornia azurea (Swartz) Kunth and relationships with abiotic factors in marginal lentic ecosystems (São Paulo, Brazil).

    PubMed

    Silva, C V; Henry, R

    2013-02-01

    Marginal lakes are characterised by their having high biological diversity due to the presence of aquatic macrophytes in their coastal zones, providing habitats for refuge and food for animal community members. Among the fauna components associated with macrophytes, aquatic macroinvertebrates are important because they are an energy source for predators and fish. In six lakes and two different seasons (March and August 2009), the ecological attributes of aquatic macroinvertebrate community associated with Eichhornia azurea were compared and the controlling environmental factors were identified. Since the attributes of macroinvertebrate community are strictly associated with abiotic variables of each distinct habitat, our hypothesis was that each site associated with the same floating aquatic macrophyte (E. azurea) should have a typical composition and density of organisms. We identified 50 taxa of macroinvertebrates, with greater taxa richness for aquatic insects (37 taxa) divided into eight orders; the order Diptera being the most abundant in the two study periods. On the other hand, higher values of total taxa richness were recorded in August. Dissolved oxygen and pH presented the greatest number of significant positive correlations with the different taxa. The animals most frequently collected in the six lakes in March and August 2009 were Hirudinea, Oligochaeta, Hydrachnidae, Conchostraca, Ostracoda, Noteridae, Ceratopogonidae, Chironomidae, Culicidae, Caenidae, Pleidae, Aeshnidae, Libellulidae, Coenagrionidae and Nematoda. Only densities of Trichoptera, Ostracoda and Conchostraca presented the highest significant differences between lakes in both study periods and considering the composition of macroinvertebrates no significant differences were registered for macroinvertebrate composition.

  4. Retracted: Using bald eagles to track spatial (1999-2008) and temporal (1987-1992, 1999-2003, and 2004-2008) trends of contaminants in Michigan's aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Wierda, Michael R; Leith, Katherine F; Grubb, Teryl G; Sikarskie, James G; Best, David A; Bowerman, William

    2016-08-01

    Retraction: 'Using bald eagles to track spatial (1999-2008) and temporal (1987-1992, 1999-2003, and 2004-2008) trends of contaminants in Michigan's aquatic ecosystems' by Michael R. Wierda, Katherine F. Leith, Teryl G. Grubb, James G. Sikarskie, David A. Best, and William Bowerman The above article from Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, published online on 10 February 2015 in Wiley Online Library (wileyonlinelibrary.com), has been retracted by agreement between the authors, the journal Editor in Chief, G.A. Burton, Jr., SETAC and Wiley Periodicals, Inc. The retraction has been agreed since the authors determined that some of the plasma samples run at Clemson University had failed quality assurance/quality control and were retested. The concentrations have since been corrected and validated. Reference Wierda MR, Leith KF, Grubb TG, Sikarskie JG, Best DA, Bowerman W. 2015. Using bald eagles to track spatial (1999-2008) and temporal (1987-1992, 1999-2003, and 2004-2008) trends of contaminants in Michigan's aquatic ecosystems. Environ ToxicolChem doi:10.1002/etc.2859.

  5. Project WILD Aquatic K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Council for Environmental Education, 2011

    2011-01-01

    The "Project WILD Aquatic K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide" emphasizes aquatic wildlife and aquatic ecosystems. It is organized in topic units and is based on the Project WILD conceptual framework. Because these activities are designed for integration into existing courses of study, instructors may use one or many Project WILD Aquatic activities…

  6. Increasing donor ecosystem productivity decreases terrestrial consumer reliance on a stream resource subsidy.

    PubMed

    Davis, John M; Rosemond, Amy D; Small, Gaston E

    2011-11-01

    Because nutrient enrichment can increase ecosystem productivity, it may enhance resource flows to adjacent ecosystems as organisms cross ecosystem boundaries and subsidize predators in recipient ecosystems. Here, we quantified the biomass and abundance of aquatic emergence and terrestrial spiders in a reference and treatment stream that had been continuously enriched with nitrogen and phosphorus for 5 years. Because we previously showed that enrichment increased secondary production of stream consumers, we predicted that aquatic emergence flux would be higher in the treatment stream, subsequently increasing the biomass and abundance of terrestrial spiders. Those increases were predicted to be greatest for spiders specializing on aquatic emergence subsidies (e.g., Tetragnathidae). By adding a (15)N stable isotope tracer to both streams, we also quantified nitrogen flow from the stream into the riparian community. Emergence biomass, but not abundance, was higher in the treatment stream. The average body size of emerging adult insects and the relative dominance of Trichoptera adults were also greater in the treatment stream. However, spider biomass did not differ between streams. Spiders also exhibited substantially lower reliance on aquatic emergence nitrogen in the treatment stream. This reduced reliance likely resulted from shifts in the body size distributions and community composition of insect emergence that may have altered predator consumption efficiency in the treatment stream. Despite nutrient enrichment approximately doubling stream productivity and associated cross-ecosystem resource flows, the response of terrestrial predators depended more on the resource subsidy's characteristics that affected the predator's ability to capitalize on such increases.

  7. Biotransformation and accumulation of selenium inside organisms in an engineered aquatic ecosystem designed for bioremediation of Se from agriculture drainage water and brine shrimp production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Excessive selenium (Se) in soils and waters present in the westside of central California was determined to be responsible for ecotoxicities observed in water fowl frequenting large bodies of water, i.e., evaporation ponds. In order to monitor the fate and potentially design an aquatic Se remediatio...

  8. Different cesium-137 transfers to forest and stream ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Masaru; Gomi, Takashi; Negishi, Junjiro N; Iwamoto, Aimu; Okada, Kengo

    2016-02-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of (137)Cs movement across different ecosystems is crucial for projecting the environmental impact and management of nuclear contamination events. Here, we report differential movement of (137)Cs in adjacent forest and stream ecosystems. The food webs of the forest and stream ecosystems in our study were similar, in that they were both dominated by detrital-based food webs and the basal energy source was terrestrial litter. However, the concentration of (137)Cs in stream litter was significantly lower than in forest litter, the result of (137)Cs leaching from litter in stream water. The difference in (137)Cs concentrations between the two types of litter was reflected in the (137)Cs concentrations in the animal community. While the importance of (137)Cs fallout and the associated transfer to food webs has been well studied, research has been primarily limited to cases in a single ecosystem. Our results indicate that there are differences in the flow of (137)Cs through terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and that (137)Cs concentrations are reduced in both basal food resources and higher trophic animals in aquatic systems, where primary production is subsidized by a neighboring terrestrial ecosystem.

  9. Why Care About Aquatic Insects: Uses, Benefits, and Services

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mayflies and other aquatic insects are common subjects of ecological research, and environmental monitoring and assessment. However, their important role in protecting and restoring aquatic ecosystems is often challenged, because their benefits and services to humans are not obv...

  10. Tracking contaminant flux from aquatic to terrestrial food webs

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aquatic insects provide a critical energy subsidy to riparian food webs, yet their role as vectors of contaminants to terrestrial ecosystems is poorly understood. We investigated aquatic resource utilization and contaminant exposure among riparian invertivores (spiders and herpt...

  11. Science for Managing Riverine Ecosystems Actions for the USGS Identified in the Workshop "Analysis of Flow and Habitat for Instream Aquatic Communities"

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-01-01

    session in Fort Collins, Colorado in April 2006. Goals of the workshop were to: 1) learn about the key resource issues facing DOI, other Federal, and...agencies. To address this need, the USGS held a listening session in Fort Collins, Colorado in April 2006. Goals of the workshop were to: 1) learn ...ecologists seek to understand the movements , growth, and survival of aquatic organisms in the dynamic riverine environment. Modelers from many disciplines

  12. [Assessment of aquatic ecosystem health based on principal component analysis with entropy weight: a case study of Wanning Reservoir (Hainan Island, China)].

    PubMed

    Xie, Fei; Gu, Ji-Guang; Lin, Zhang-Wen

    2014-06-01

    A new assessment method based on principal component analysis (PCA) and entropy weight for ecosystem health was applied to Wanning Reservoir, Hainan Island, China to investigate whether the new method could solve the overlap in weighting which existed in the traditional entropy weight-based method for ecosystem health. The results showed that, the ecosystem health status of Wanning Reservoir showed an improvement trend overall from 2010 to 2012; the means of ecosystem health comprehensive index (EHCI) in each year were 0.534, 0.617, 0.634 for 2010, 2011 and 2012 respectively, and the ecosystem health status was III (medium), II (good), and II (good), respectively. In addition, the ecosystem health status of the reservoir displayed a weak seasonal variation. The variation of EHCI became smaller recently, showing that Wanning Reservoir tended to be relatively stable. Comparison of the weight of indices in the new and the traditional methods indicated that, the cumulative weight of the four indices (i. e., DO, COD, BOD, and NH(4+)-N) had a stronger correlation of 0.382 for the traditional one than that (0.178) for the new method. It suggested the application of PCA with entropy could avoid the overlap in weighting effectively. In addition, the correlation analysis between the trophic status index and EHCI showed significant negative correlation (P < 0.05), indicating that the new method based on PCA with entropy weight could improve not only the assignment of weighting but also the accuracy of the results. The new method here is suitable for evaluating ecosystem health of the reservoir.

  13. Effects of physical and biogeochemical processes on aquatic ecosystems at the groundwater-surface water interface: An evaluation of a sulfate-impacted wild rice stream in Minnesota (USA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ng, G. H. C.; Yourd, A. R.; Myrbo, A.; Johnson, N.

    2015-12-01

    Significant uncertainty and variability in physical and biogeochemical processes at the groundwater-surface water interface complicate how surface water chemistry affects aquatic ecosystems. Questions surrounding a unique 10 mg/L sulfate standard for wild rice (Zizania sp.) waters in Minnesota are driving research to clarify conditions controlling the geochemistry of shallow sediment porewater in stream- and lake-beds. This issue raises the need and opportunity to carry out in-depth, process-based analysis into how water fluxes and coupled C, S, and Fe redox cycles interact to impact aquatic plants. Our study builds on a recent state-wide field campaign that showed that accumulation of porewater sulfide from sulfate reduction impairs wild rice, an annual grass that grows in shallow lakes and streams in the Great Lakes region of North America. Negative porewater sulfide correlations with organic C and Fe quantities also indicated that lower redox rates and greater mineral precipitation attenuate sulfide. Here, we focus on a stream in northern Minnesota that receives high sulfate loading from iron mining activity yet maintains wild rice stands. In addition to organic C and Fe effects, we evaluate the degree to which streambed hydrology, and in particular groundwater contributions, accounts for the active biogeochemistry. We collect field measurements, spanning the surrounding groundwater system to the stream, to constrain a reactive-transport model. Observations from seepage meters, temperature probes, and monitoring wells delineate upward flow that may lessen surface water impacts below the stream. Geochemical analyses of groundwater, porewater, and surface water samples and of sediment extractions reveal distinctions among the different domains and stream banks, which appear to jointly control conditions in the streambed. A model based on field conditions can be used to evaluate the relative the importance and the spatiotemporal scales of diverse flux and

  14. Aquatic Environments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aquatic microbiology can be defined as the study of microorganisms and microbial communities in water environments. Aquatic environments occupy more than 70% of the earth’s surface including oceans, estuaries, rivers, lakes, wetlands, streams, springs, and aquifers. Water is essential for life and m...

  15. The Climate Space Concept: Analysis of the Steady State Heat Energy Budget of Animals. Physical Processes in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystems, Transport Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, R. D.

    These materials were designed to be used by life science students for instruction in the application of physical theory to ecosystem operation. Most modules contain computer programs which are built around a particular application of a physical process. Several modules in the thermodynamic series considered the application of the First Law to…

  16. ECOFATE: A user-friendly environmental fate, bioaccumulation and ecological risk assessment model for contaminants in marine and freshwater aquatic ecosystems -- Applications and validation

    SciTech Connect

    Xin Zhang; Gobas, F.

    1995-12-31

    A Windows based computer simulation model of the environmental fate, food-chain bioaccumulation, toxicity and ecological and human health risks of contaminants is presented. Case studies demonstrating the models application in a lake, a river and a marine fjord are discussed and results are presented illustrating the ability of the model to estimate environmental concentrations over time based on chemical loadings. The case studies involve (1) the temporal response of PCB and mirex concentrations in water, sediments, benthos, fish and bird species of Lake Ontario, (2) the time response of concentrations of chlorinated dioxins and furans in sediments and fish in the Fraser River to reductions in pulp and paper mill discharges and (3) the fate and bioaccumulation of chlorinated dioxins and PAHs in Vancouver Harbour. The purpose of the studies and the model is to assess the capability to predict the environmental fate and bioaccumulation on an ecosystem level, which is of importance for developing site specific environmental quality criteria and to assess the ecosystem`s assimilative capacity by relating whole ecosystem loading allocations to environmental quality criteria.

  17. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    EPA announced the availability of the final report, The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields. This report assesses the state of the science on the environmental impacts of mountaintop mines and valley fills (MTM-VF) on streams in the central Appalachian coalfields. These coalfields cover about 48,000 square kilometers (122 million acres) in West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee, USA. Our reviews focused on the impacts on mountaintop removal coal mining, which as its name suggests, involves removing all or some portion of the top of a mountain or ridge to expose and mine one or more coal seams. The excess overburden is disposed of in constructed fills in small valleys or hollows adjacent to the mining site. Our conclusions, based on evidence from the peer-reviewed literature and from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement released in 2005, are that mountaintop mines and valley fills lead directly to five principal alterations of stream ecosystems: springs and ephemeral, intermittent and perennial streams are permanently lost with the removal of the mountain and from burial under fill, concentrations of major chemical ions are persistently elevated downstream, degraded water quality reaches levels that are acutely lethal to organisms in standard aquatic toxicity tests, selenium concentrations are elevated, reaching concentrations t

  18. Quantifying Water Flow within Aquatic Ecosystems Using Load Cell Sensors: A Profile of Currents Experienced by Coral Reef Organisms around Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia

    PubMed Central

    Johansen, Jacob L.

    2014-01-01

    Current velocity in aquatic environments has major implications for the diversity, abundance and ecology of aquatic organisms, but quantifying these currents has proven difficult. This study utilises a simple and inexpensive instrument (<$150) to provide a detailed current velocity profile of the coral-reef system around Lizard Island (Great Barrier Reef, Australia) at a spatial and temporal scale relevant to the ecology of individual benthos and fish. The instrument uses load-cell sensors to provide a correlation between sensor output and ambient current velocity of 99%. Each instrument is able to continuously record current velocities to >500 cms−1 and wave frequency to >100 Hz over several weeks. Sensor data are registered and processed at 16 MHz and 10 bit resolution, with a measuring precision of 0.06±0.04%, and accuracy of 0.51±0.65% (mean ±S.D.). Each instrument is also pressure rated to 120 m and shear stresses ≤20 kNm−2 allowing deployment in harsh environments. The instrument was deployed across 27 coral reef sites covering the crest (3 m), mid-slope (6 m) and deep-slope (9 m depth) of habitats directly exposed, oblique or sheltered from prevailing winds. Measurements demonstrate that currents over the reef slope and crest varies immensely depending on depth and exposure: Currents differ up to 9-fold within habitats only separated by 3 m depth and 15-fold between exposed, oblique and sheltered habitats. Comparisons to ambient weather conditions reveal that currents around Lizard Island are largely wind driven. Zero to 22.5 knot winds correspond directly to currents of 0 to >82 cms−1, while tidal currents rarely exceed 5.5 cms−1. Rather, current velocity increases exponentially as a function of wave height (0 to 1.6 m) and frequency (0.54 to 0.20 Hz), emphasizing the enormous effect of wind and waves on organisms in these shallow coral reef habitats. PMID:24421878

  19. Quantifying water flow within aquatic ecosystems using load cell sensors: a profile of currents experienced by coral reef organisms around Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia.

    PubMed

    Johansen, Jacob L

    2014-01-01

    Current velocity in aquatic environments has major implications for the diversity, abundance and ecology of aquatic organisms, but quantifying these currents has proven difficult. This study utilises a simple and inexpensive instrument (<$150) to provide a detailed current velocity profile of the coral-reef system around Lizard Island (Great Barrier Reef, Australia) at a spatial and temporal scale relevant to the ecology of individual benthos and fish. The instrument uses load-cell sensors to provide a correlation between sensor output and ambient current velocity of 99%. Each instrument is able to continuously record current velocities to >500 cms⁻¹ and wave frequency to >100 Hz over several weeks. Sensor data are registered and processed at 16 MHz and 10 bit resolution, with a measuring precision of 0.06±0.04%, and accuracy of 0.51±0.65% (mean ±S.D.). Each instrument is also pressure rated to 120 m and shear stresses ≤20 kNm⁻² allowing deployment in harsh environments. The instrument was deployed across 27 coral reef sites covering the crest (3 m), mid-slope (6 m) and deep-slope (9 m depth) of habitats directly exposed, oblique or sheltered from prevailing winds. Measurements demonstrate that currents over the reef slope and crest varies immensely depending on depth and exposure: currents differ up to 9-fold within habitats only separated by 3 m depth and 15-fold between exposed, oblique and sheltered habitats. Comparisons to ambient weather conditions reveal that currents around Lizard Island are largely wind driven. Zero to 22.5 knot winds correspond directly to currents of 0 to >82 cms⁻¹, while tidal currents rarely exceed 5.5 cms⁻¹. Rather, current velocity increases exponentially as a function of wave height (0 to 1.6 m) and frequency (0.54 to 0.20 Hz), emphasizing the enormous effect of wind and waves on organisms in these shallow coral reef habitats.

  20. Pesticide and PCB residues in the aquatic ecosystems of Laguna de Terminos, a protected area of the coast of Campeche, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Fernando P; Villeneuve, Jean-Pierre; Cattini, C; Rendón, Jaime; Mota de Oliveira, J

    2009-02-01

    The coastal lagoon system of Laguna de Terminos, Campeche, Mexico, a natural reserve since 1994, was investigated for contamination by agricultural and industrial chemical residues. Water, sediment and biota samples were analyzed for a wide variety of organochlorine and organophosphorus compounds. Chlorpyrifos was detected in water in concentrations up to 72 pgL(-1) and, amongst organochlorine compounds, summation operator PCB were measured averaging 1177 pgL(-1) and summation operator DDT 279 pgL(-1). Residues of chlorinated compounds were present in sediments and in biota with summation operator DDT averaging 190 pg g(-1) and 5876 pg g(-1) in sediment and oysters, respectively. Results show that the more widespread contaminants in the Laguna were residues of chlorinated hydrocarbons, such as DDTs, PCBs, endosulfan, and lindane. Concentrations of residues were not at an alarming level and were even lower than reported for other costal lagoons of the region. Still there is a need to implement control measures on persistent and bioaccumulative compounds that may reach the aquatic system of Laguna de Terminos.

  1. Using field data to assess the effects of pesticides on crustacea in freshwater aquatic ecosystems and verifying the level of protection provided by water quality guidelines.

    PubMed

    Guy, Martha; Singh, Lucina; Mineau, Pierre

    2011-07-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate how well single-species laboratory data predict real-world pesticide toxicity effects on Crustacea. Data from field pesticide exposures from experimental mesocosm and small pond studies were converted into toxicity units (TUs) by dividing measured pesticide concentrations by the L(E)C50 for Daphnia or acute 5% hazard concentration for Crustacea (HC5-C). The proportion of crustacean taxa significantly affected by the pesticide treatment, called the count ratio of effect, was used in logistic regression models. Of 200 possible logistic model combinations of the TUs, fate, physicochemical variables, and structural variables versus the count ratio of effect for the mesocosm data, the best model was found to incorporate log(TU HC5-C). This model was used to convert pesticide water quality guidelines from around the world into estimates of the proportion of crustacean taxa predicted to be impacted by exposure to a pesticide at the water quality guideline concentration. This analysis suggests 64% of long-term water quality guidelines and 88% of short-term pesticide water quality guidelines are not protective of the aquatic life they are designed to protect. We conclude that empirically derived data from mesocosm studies should be incorporated into water quality guideline derivation for pesticides where available. Also, interspecific differences in susceptibility should be accounted for more accurately to ensure water quality guidelines are adequately protective against the adverse effects of pesticide exposure.

  2. Effect of emergent aquatic insects on bat foraging in a riparian forest.

    PubMed

    Fukui, Dai; Murakami, Masashi; Nakano, Shigeru; Aoi, Toshiki

    2006-11-01

    other riparian consumers, resource subsidies from streams can directly enhance the performance or population density of riparian-dependent bats. To conserve and manage bat populations, it is important to protect not only forest ecosystems, but also adjacent aquatic systems such as streams.

  3. Isotopic evidence for anthropogenic impacts on aquatic food web dynamics and mercury cycling in a subtropical wetland ecosystem in the US.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yang; Gu, Binhe; Lee, Ming-Kuo; Jiang, Shijun; Xu, Yingfeng

    2014-07-15

    Quantifying and predicting the food web consequences of anthropogenic changes is difficult using traditional methods (based on gut content analysis) because natural food webs are variable and complex. Here, stable and radioactive carbon isotopes are used, in conjunction with nitrogen isotopes and mercury (Hg) concentration data, to document the effects of land-use change on food webs and Hg bioaccumulation in the Everglades - a subtropical wetland ecosystem in the US. Isotopic signatures of largemouth bass and sunfish in reference (relatively pristine) wetlands indicate reliance on the food supply of modern primary production within the wetland. In contrast, both fish in areas impacted by agricultural runoff had radiocarbon ages as old as 540 years B.P., and larger isotopic variability than counterparts in reference wetlands, reflecting differences in the food web between impacted and reference wetlands. Consistent with this difference, particulate and dissolved organic matter in impacted areas had old radiocarbon ages (>600 years B.P.), indicating that old carbon derived from historic peat deposits in the Everglades Agricultural Area was passed along the food chain to consumers. Significant radiocarbon deficiencies in largemouth bass and sunfish, relative to mosquitofish, in impacted areas most likely indicate a reduced dependence on small fish. Furthermore, largemouth bass and sunfish from impacted areas had much lower Hg contents than those from reference wetlands. Taken together, these data suggest a shift toward lower trophic levels and a possible reduction in mercury methylation in impacted wetlands. Our study provides clear evidence that hydrological modification and land-use change in the Everglades have changed the system from one driven primarily by in-situ productivity to one that is partially dependent on allochthonous carbon input from peat soils in the agricultural area and altered the Hg biogeochemical cycle in the wetlands. The results have

  4. Microbial mediated retention/transformation of organic and inorganic materials in freshwater and marine ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aquatic ecosystems are globally connected by hydrological and biogeochemical cycles. Microorganisms inhabiting aquatic ecosystems form the basis of food webs, mediate essential element cycles, decompose natural organic matter, transform inorganic nutrients and metals, and degrad...

  5. Toxicity assessment of boron (B) by Lemna minor L. and Lemna gibba L. and their possible use as model plants for ecological risk assessment of aquatic ecosystems with boron pollution.

    PubMed

    Gür, Nurcan; Türker, Onur Can; Böcük, Harun

    2016-08-01

    As many of the metalloid-based pollutants, the boron (B) toxicity issues have aroused more and more global attentions, especially concerning drinking water sources which flow through boron-rich areas. Therefore, feasible and innovative approaches are required in order to assess B toxicity in aquatic ecosystems. In this study, the toxic effects of B on Lemna minor L. and Lemna gibba L. were investigated using various endpoints including number of fronds, growth rates, dry biomass and antioxidants enzymatic activities. Lemna species were exposed to B concentrations of 2 (control), 4, 8, 16, 32, 64 and 128 mg L(-1) for a test period of 7 days. The results demonstrated that plant growth was significantly reduced when the B concentration reached 16 mg L(-1). Furthermore, our results also concluded that among the antioxidative enzymes, SOD, APX and GPX can serve as important biomarkers for B-rich environment. The present results suggested that L. minor and L. gibba are very useful model plants for phytoremediation of low-B contaminated wastewater and they are also suitable options for B biomonitoring due to high phototoxic sensitivity against B. In this respect, the scientific insight of the present study is to fill the gaps in the research about the use of L. minor and L. gibba in ecotoxicological research associated with B toxicity.

  6. Using bald eagles to track spatial (1999-2008) and temporal (1987-1992, 1999-2003, and 2004-2008) trends of contaminants in Michigan's aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Wierda, Michael R; Leith, Katherine F; Roe, Amy S; Grubb, Teryl G; Sikarskie, James G; Best, David A; Pittman, H Tyler; Fuentes, Latice; Simon, Kendall L; Bowerman, William

    2016-08-01

    The bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) is an extensively researched tertiary predator. Studies have delineated information about its life history and the influences of various stressors on its reproduction. Due to the bald eagle's position at the top of the food web, it is susceptible to biomagnification of xenobiotics. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality implemented a program in 1999 to monitor persistent chemicals including polychlorinated biphenols (PCBs) and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDE). The objectives of the present study were to evaluate spatial and temporal trends of PCBs and organochlorine pesticides in nestling bald eagles of Michigan. The authors' study found that concentrations of PCBs and DDE were higher in Great Lakes areas with Lakes Michigan and Lake Huron having the highest concentrations of DDE and Lake Erie having the highest concentrations of PCBs. Temporally (1987-1992, 1999-2003, and 2004-2008) the present study found declines in PCB and DDE concentrations with a few exceptions. Continued monitoring of Michigan bald eagle populations is suggested for a couple of reasons. First, nestling blood contaminant levels are an appropriate method to monitor ecosystem contaminant levels. Second, from 1999 to 2008 PCB and DDE concentrations for 30% and 40%, respectively, of the nestling eagles sampled were above the no observable adverse effect level (NOAEL) for bald eagles. Lastly, with the continued development and deployment of new chemistries a continuous long term monitoring program is an invaluable resource. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:1995-2002. © 2016 SETAC.

  7. Aquatic Sediments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sanville, W. D.; And Others

    1978-01-01

    Presents a literature review of aquatic sediments and its effect upon water quality, covering publications of 1976-77. This review includes: (1) sediment water interchange; (2) chemical and physical characterization; and (3) heavy water in sediments. A list of 129 references is also presented. (HM)

  8. Multivariate and Phylogenetic Analyses Assessing the Response of Bacterial Mat Communities from an Ancient Oligotrophic Aquatic Ecosystem to Different Scenarios of Long-Term Environmental Disturbance

    PubMed Central

    Pajares, Silvia; Souza, Valeria; Eguiarte, Luis E.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the response of bacterial communities to environmental change is extremely important in predicting the effect of biogeochemical modifications in ecosystem functioning. The Cuatro Cienegas Basin is an ancient oasis in the Mexican Chihuahuan desert that hosts a wide diversity of microbial mats and stromatolites that have survived in extremely oligotrophic pools with nearly constant conditions. However, thus far, the response of these unique microbial communities to long-term environmental disturbances remains unexplored. We therefore studied the compositional stability of these bacterial mat communities by using a replicated (3x) mesocosm experiment: a) Control; b) Fluct: fluctuating temperature; c) 40C: increase to 40 ºC; d) UVplus: artificial increase in UV radiation; and f) UVmin: UV radiation protection. In order to observe the changes in biodiversity, we obtained 16S rRNA gene clone libraries from microbial mats at the end of the experiment (eight months) and analyzed them using multivariate and phylogenetic tools. Sequences were assigned to 13 major lineages, among which Cyanobacteria (38.8%) and Alphaproteobacteria (25.5%) were the most abundant. The less extreme treatments (Control and UVmin) had a more similar composition and distribution of the phylogenetic groups with the natural pools than the most extreme treatments (Fluct, 40C, and UVplus), which showed drastic changes in the community composition and structure, indicating a different community response to each environmental disturbance. An increase in bacterial diversity was found in the UVmin treatment, suggesting that protected environments promote the establishment of complex bacterial communities, while stressful environments reduce diversity and increase the dominance of a few Cyanobacterial OTUs (mainly Leptolyngbya sp) through environmental filtering. Mesocosm experiments using complex bacterial communities, along with multivariate and phylogenetic analyses of molecular data, can

  9. Assessment of multi-chemical pollution in aquatic ecosystems using toxic units: compound prioritization, mixture characterization and relationships with biological descriptors.

    PubMed

    Ginebreda, Antoni; Kuzmanovic, Maja; Guasch, Helena; de Alda, Miren López; López-Doval, Julio C; Muñoz, Isabel; Ricart, Marta; Romaní, Anna M; Sabater, Sergi; Barceló, Damià

    2014-01-15

    Chemical pollution is typically characterized by exposure to multiple rather than to single or a limited number of compounds. Parent compounds, transformation products and other non-targeted compounds yield mixtures whose composition can only be partially identified by monitoring, while a substantial proportion remains unknown. In this context, risk assessment based on the application of additive ecotoxicity models, such as concentration addition (CA), is rendered somewhat misleading. Here, we show that ecotoxicity risk information can be better understood upon consideration of the probabilistic distribution of risk among the different compounds. Toxic units of the compounds identified in a sample fit a lognormal probability distribution. The parameters characterizing this distribution (mean and standard deviation) provide information which can be tentatively interpreted as a measure of the toxic load and its apportionment among the constituents in the mixture (here interpreted as mixture complexity). Furthermore, they provide information for compound prioritization tailored to each site and enable prediction of some of the functional and structural biological variables associated with the receiving ecosystem. The proposed approach was tested in the Llobregat River basin (NE Spain) using exposure and toxicity data (algae and Daphnia) corresponding to 29 pharmaceuticals and 22 pesticides, and 5 structural and functional biological descriptors related to benthic macroinvertebrates (diversity, biomass) and biofilm metrics (diatom quality, chlorophyll-a content and photosynthetic capacity). Aggregated toxic units based on Daphnia and algae bioassays provided a good indication of the pollution pattern of the Llobregat River basin. Relative contribution of pesticides and pharmaceuticals to total toxic load was variable and highly site dependent, the latter group tending to increase its contribution in urban areas. Contaminated sites' toxic load was typically dominated by

  10. Pesticide runoff from energy crops: A threat to aquatic invertebrates?

    PubMed

    Bunzel, Katja; Schäfer, Ralf B; Thrän, Daniela; Kattwinkel, Mira

    2015-12-15

    The European Union aims to reach a 10% share of biofuels in the transport sector by 2020. The major burden is most likely to fall on already established annual energy crops such as rapeseed and cereals for the production of biodiesel and bioethanol, respectively. Annual energy crops are typically cultivated in intensive agricultural production systems, which require the application of pesticides. Agricultural pesticides can have adverse effects on aquatic invertebrates in adjacent streams. We assessed the relative ecological risk to aquatic invertebrates associated with the chemical pest management from six energy crops (maize, potato, sugar beet, winter barley, winter rapeseed, and winter wheat) as well as from mixed cultivation scenarios. The pesticide exposure related to energy crops and cultivation scenarios was estimated as surface runoff for 253 small stream sites in Central Germany using a GIS-based runoff potential model. The ecological risk for aquatic invertebrates, an important organism group for the functioning of stream ecosystems, was assessed using acute toxicity data (48-h LC50 values) of the crustacean Daphnia magna. We calculated the Ecological Risk from potential Pesticide Runoff (ERPR) for all three main groups of pesticides (herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides). Our findings suggest that the crops potato, sugar beet, and rapeseed pose a higher ecological risk to aquatic invertebrates than maize, barley, and wheat. As maize had by far the lowest ERPR values, from the perspective of pesticide pollution, its cultivation as substrate for the production of the gaseous biofuel biomethane may be preferable compared to the production of, for example, biodiesel from rapeseed.

  11. Synergistic effects of mining and urban effluents on the level and distribution of methylmercury in a shallow aquatic ecosystem of the Bolivian Altiplano.

    PubMed

    Alanoca, L; Guédron, S; Amouroux, D; Audry, S; Monperrus, M; Tessier, E; Goix, S; Acha, D; Seyler, P; Point, D

    2016-12-08

    , productive and evaporative high altitude lake ecosystems which promotes the formation of natural organometallic toxins such as MMHg in the water column.

  12. Spatial and temporal water quality variability in aquatic habitats of a cultivated floodplain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Floodplains of lowland rivers contain diverse aquatic habitats that provide valuable ecosystem services, but are perturbed when intensively cultivated. Hydrologic, water quality and biological (fish) conditions in five aquatic habitats along the Coldwater River, Mississippi were measured over four ...

  13. A quantication of photoproduction of CO2 throughout the water column by degradation of terrigenous organic compounds present in the dissolved form for aquatic ecosystems of the boreal region in Quebec

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plouhinec, J.; Lucotte, M. M.; Ouellet, A.; Gelinas, Y.

    2010-12-01

    This study focuses on the quantity of CO2 produced by photodegradation in various pristine and disrupted water bodies. Photodegradation of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in the water column was evaluated in relation to two environmental factors e.g., the presence or absence of logging on the watershed and the contrast between natural lakes and hydroelectric reservoirs. Water samples were irradiated after filtration under 0,2µm, and subsequently analyzed for their CO2 production. Mean energy normalized for the spectral energy exposed to samples was determined to evaluate the photoreactivity of DOM under similar exposure conditions. In complement, organic matter samples had been concentrated via reverse osmosis. We then characterized the origin of DOM present in the water column with lignin biomarkers. Our results confirmed that the photomineralization increased significantly with DOM concentration. The daily photodegradation production was strikingly different in natural lakes and hydroelectric reservoirs. Average springtime and summertime production was evaluated at 5.45 ± 5.61 µmol.L-1.d-1 for lakes, compared to 14.21 ± 8.77 µmol.L-1.d-1 for boreal reservoirs. A similar comparison between ecosystems affected and unaffected by logging, also showed contrasting results for the photodegradation of DOM. Moreover, our lignin biomarkers increased significantly with CO2 generation. It thus appears that allochthonous organic matter strongly influences CO2 photoproduction. Finally, we evaluated the Photochemical Contribution to CO2 diffusive Fluxes (PCFCO2) between 14% and 32% depending on the degree of perturbation of the aquatic system.

  14. Nitrous oxide emission by aquatic macrofauna

    PubMed Central

    Stief, Peter; Poulsen, Morten; Nielsen, Lars Peter; Brix, Hans; Schramm, Andreas

    2009-01-01

    A large variety of aquatic animals was found to emit the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide when nitrate was present in the environment. The emission was ascribed to denitrification by ingested bacteria in the anoxic animal gut, and the exceptionally high N2O-to-N2 production ratio suggested delayed induction of the last step of denitrification. Filter- and deposit-feeding animal species showed the highest rates of nitrous oxide emission and predators the lowest, probably reflecting the different amounts of denitrifying bacteria in the diet. We estimate that nitrous oxide emission by aquatic animals is quantitatively important in nitrate-rich aquatic environments like freshwater, coastal marine, and deep-sea ecosystems. The contribution of this source to overall nitrous oxide emission from aquatic environments might further increase because of the projected increase of nitrate availability in tropical regions and the numeric dominance of filter- and deposit-feeders in eutrophic ecosystems. PMID:19255427

  15. The aquatic