Anthropogenic and Climatic Disturbances in Aquatic Ecosystems: Multiscale Spatio-Temporal Evolution and Effects

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Biodiversity and Functionality of Aquatic Ecosystems".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2024 | Viewed by 8796

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Guest Editor
CNR—ISMAR Marine Science Institute, 34149 Trieste, Italy
Interests: chemical oceanography; biogeochemistry; climate change; coastal ecosystems; air–sea interactions; eutrophication; runoff; mucilage phenomenon; polar marine ecosystems
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Freshwater systems, coastal zones and open sea regions are currently affected by a variety of hydrological, geochemical and biological transformations originated by a complex interaction of anthropogenic and climatic disturbances, which mainly act on spatial scales ranging from meso to mega and temporal scales from daily to centennial.

The spread of human-derived substances in aquatic systems and their mobilization through atmospheric and benthic fluxes have often caused the degradation of water quality, whereas the intensive usage of ecosystem services has caused the impoverishment of natural resources. Aquatic environments are also exposed to increasing disturbances originated by climate changes. Freshwater and coastal systems have long been impacted by the alteration of meteorological conditions, runoff, sediment transport, extreme events and sea level rise. More recently, oceanographic properties and circulation in open sea regions have also been seen to respond to climatic oscillations and trends.

This Special Issue is focused on the analysis of the evolution of aquatic ecosystems over a large variety of spatial and temporal scales, in order to identify the effects of concomitant anthropogenic and climatic forcings. Aquatic systems from tropical to polar regions can be considered. We encourage the submission of specific and multidisciplinary studies based on field and laboratory experiments, the reanalysis of data series, and ecological modelling, as well as papers providing reviews and synthesis of the scientific literature.

This Special Issue is the second volume, following the previous one titled “Anthropogenic and Climatic Disturbances in Freshwater and Coastal Ecosystems: Interactive Impacts and Expected Threats.”

Dr. Stefano Cozzi
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • water quality
  • ecosystem structure
  • ecosystem services
  • climatic oscillations and trends
  • runoff
  • continental loads
  • biogeochemical cycling
  • river and lake systems
  • coastal zones
  • open sea environments

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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14 pages, 1058 KiB  
Article
Diatom Voucher Flora and Comparison of Collection and Taxonomic Methods for Biodiversity Hotspot Upper Three Runs Creek
by Katherine M. Johnson, Evelyn Gaiser and Kalina M. Manoylov
Water 2023, 15(14), 2578; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15142578 - 14 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1025
Abstract
Incorporating diatoms species and their autecology from reference stream conditions is essential for improving the accuracy of North American diatom bioassessments. This study documents a voucher flora and physicochemical conditions of Upper Three Runs Creek (UTRC), a tributary to the Savannah River that [...] Read more.
Incorporating diatoms species and their autecology from reference stream conditions is essential for improving the accuracy of North American diatom bioassessments. This study documents a voucher flora and physicochemical conditions of Upper Three Runs Creek (UTRC), a tributary to the Savannah River that has been protected from heavy human activity for the last 50 years. The algae of UTRC and its watershed have been monitored continuously during this time by the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia to detect potential impacts from the Savannah River Site and Plant Vogtle. Standard protocols were used to sample and denote substrate types and preferences and to estimate relative abundances of diatom species. Data from artificial substrates (diatometers) were compared to composite samples. Phenotypic plasticity of taxa from Gomphonema parvulum, Eunotia incisa, and Tabellaria flocculosa sensu lato species complexes were considered in biodiversity metrics. We provide documentation of these separations. A total of 297 species/operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were recorded. For 2018 samples, Eunotia rhomboidea accounted for 8.3% for separated taxa methods and G. parvulum sensu lato (16.2%) dominated for combined taxa methods. Luticola goeppertiana (5.4%) was the most abundant taxon in the 1956 samples. The 1956 composite samples species richness means were greater and significantly greater than those for other sample types (ANOVA, df = 3, p = 0.004). The recounted 1956 composite samples had the highest species richness (153) followed by the left diatometer (129). At the same location, the right and left diatometers were not similar. Both methods (diatometers and composite sampling) are useful when assessing species richness. Diatom community composition indicated an acidic and highly oxygenated environment. Full article
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22 pages, 4260 KiB  
Article
Elevated River Inputs of the Total Alkalinity and Dissolved Inorganic Carbon in the Northern Adriatic Sea
by Michele Giani, Nives Ogrinc, Samo Tamše and Stefano Cozzi
Water 2023, 15(5), 894; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15050894 - 25 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2334
Abstract
The response of coastal systems to global acidification depends strongly on river inputs, which can alter the total alkalinity (AT) and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in seawater. The northern Adriatic Sea (NAd) is a shallow continental shelf region that currently receives [...] Read more.
The response of coastal systems to global acidification depends strongly on river inputs, which can alter the total alkalinity (AT) and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in seawater. The northern Adriatic Sea (NAd) is a shallow continental shelf region that currently receives about 15% of the total freshwater input in the Mediterranean Sea, where the role of riverine discharges on the carbonate system has been poorly studied. In particular, river discharges can alter the carbonate system in the sea, affecting both the equilibrium chemistry and biological processes. For the main rivers flowing into the NAd (the Po, Adige, Brenta, Piave, Livenza, Tagliamento, Isonzo, Timavo and Rižana), data were collected for the pH, concentrations of the total alkalinity (AT), Ca2+ and Mg2+ and the isotopic ratio of stable carbon in the dissolved inorganic carbon (δ13CDIC). The DIC fluxes were estimated using the THINCARB (THermodynamic modeling of INOrganic CARBon) model for the compilation of the AT and pH data. The results show that the total transport of the AT in the rivers was 205 Gmol yr−1 while the transport of the DIC was 213 Gmol yr−1, of which about 70% was from the Po River. About 97% of the DIC in the river waters was in the form of bicarbonates. The high Mg2+/Ca2+ ratios indicate that dolomite weathering is predominant in the Adige, Piave, and Livenza river basins, while lower ratios in the Timavo and Rižana rivers indicate a greater proportion of calcite. The mean δ13C-DIC value was estimated to be −10.0 ± 1.7 ‰, a value nowadays considered typical for the DIC flux inputs in oceanic carbon cycle modeling. The DIC flux depends on the mineral weathering and biological activity in each river basin. However, these natural processes can be modified by anthropogenic disturbances that should be better quantified. Full article
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Review

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39 pages, 3779 KiB  
Review
Impacts of Habitat Quality on the Physiology, Ecology, and Economical Value of Mud Crab Scylla sp.: A Comprehensive Review
by Samar Gourav Pati, Biswaranjan Paital, Falguni Panda, Srikanta Jena and Dipak Kumar Sahoo
Water 2023, 15(11), 2029; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15112029 - 26 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 4818
Abstract
The water of the mangrove ecosystem and surrounding coastal areas are gradually shrinking due to the intense destruction. Therefore, the effects of the physicochemical properties of the habitat water on the in-habitant species must be studied. Scylla sp. is involved in the food [...] Read more.
The water of the mangrove ecosystem and surrounding coastal areas are gradually shrinking due to the intense destruction. Therefore, the effects of the physicochemical properties of the habitat water on the in-habitant species must be studied. Scylla sp. is involved in the food chain and bioturbation structure formation in mangrove forests. Five major electronic databases, such as PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, AGRICOLA, and Google Scholar, were systematically searched to review the cause and effects of influencing abiotic factors, mainly physicochemical properties of habitat water, including water pollution on Scylla sp. Responses of mud crabs at biochemical, molecular, physiological, growth, reproduction, and production level were independently reviewed or in relation to physicochemical properties of habitat water, pathogens, heavy metals, and harmful chemicals present in their habitat water. Review results suggest that these crabs are mostly under threats of overfishing, varied physicochemical properties of habitat water, pathogens, heavy metals, and chemical toxicants in water, etc. At low temperatures, the expression of calreticulin and heat shock protein-70 mRNA expression is elevated. Like melatonin, the hormone serotonin in mud crabs controls ecdysteroids and methyl farnesoate at 24 °C, 26 ppt salinity, and pH 7.2 of habitat water, facilitating their reproduction physiology. Xenobiotics in habitat water induce toxicity and oxidative stress in mud crabs. These crabs are prone to infection by white spot and rust spot diseases during the winter and spring seasons with varied water temperatures of 10–30 °C. However, elevated (65%) weight gain with higher molting at the juvenile stage can be achieved if crabs are cultured in water and kept in the dark. Their larvae grow better at 30 ± 2 °C with salinity 35 ppt and 12 hL/12 hD day length. So, monitoring habitat water quality is important for crab culture. Full article
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