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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16010020

The Impact of Land Use Transformations on Zooplankton Communities in a Small Mountain River (The Corgo River, Northern Portugal)

1
Department of Hydrobiology and General Zoology, Faculty of Biology, University of Szczecin, 71-712 Szczecin, Poland
2
Centre of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, University of Szczecin, 71-712 Szczecin, Poland
3
Department of Hydrobiology and Aquaculture, Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, 51-630 Wrocław, Poland
4
Department of Geology, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, 5001-801 Vila Real, Portugal
5
Centre for Mechanical Engineering, Materials and Processes, University of Coimbra, 3000-079 Coimbra, Portugal
6
Centre for the Research and Technology of Agro-Environmental and Biological Sciences, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, 5001-801 Vila Real, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 November 2018 / Revised: 18 December 2018 / Accepted: 19 December 2018 / Published: 21 December 2018
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Abstract

Transformation of the river catchment and the river bed cause significant changes in the functioning of river ecosystems. The main effects of anthropogenic transformations are hydrological changes, such as lower current velocity or an increase of nutrient content, and higher temperature. Zooplankton reacts rapidly to the new environmental conditions in rivers, increasing its richness and abundance. We tried to answer two questions: what type of catchment use has a greater influence on the zooplankton communities in a river and how do dam impoundments influence the zooplankton communities downstream? The study was conducted in the Corgo river (drainage of the Douro river, Northern Portugal) at 17 sampling sites in the lotic, free-flowing sections. Crustaceans present in the Corgo can attain relatively high densities in the rural section, which offers them better trophic conditions. The urban catchment use and the presence of dams have a greater impact on the rotifer density and the increase of zooplankton density downstream. The results of this study confirm that zooplankton properties allow for the evaluation of the degree of river-bed transformation. View Full-Text
Keywords: land use; river bed changes; ecohydrology; organic matter; river continuum land use; river bed changes; ecohydrology; organic matter; river continuum
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Sługocki, Ł.; Czerniawski, R.; Kowalska-Góralska, M.; Senze, M.; Reis, A.; Carrola, J.S.; Teixeira, C.A. The Impact of Land Use Transformations on Zooplankton Communities in a Small Mountain River (The Corgo River, Northern Portugal). Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 20.

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