Groundwater and Connected Ecosystems

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Hydrogeology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2023) | Viewed by 5186

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Division of Zoology, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb, Rooseveltov trg 6, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Interests: aquatic ecology; crenobiology; crustaceology; life-history traits; groundwater-dependent ecosystems; water management; environmental sciences

Special Issue Information

Dear Respected Colleagues,

There are significant gaps in the literature concerning highly valuable topics of groundwater ecology. Groundwater supports extraordinarily numerous and diverse aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems that are at risk globally, and yet are insufficiently defined and protected. Among the ecosystems that have been neglected, future research should focus on local specificity of flooded forests, wetlands, springs, and subterranean estuaries as well as many other terrestrial habitats and ecosystems. To fill this substantial knowledge gaps, this Special Issue of Water titled “Groundwater and Connected Ecosystems” is devoted primarily to (1) illuminating the connections between groundwater and connected ecosystems; (2) improving knowledge of the close interdependency between known and/or hitherto insufficiently known or even unknown groundwater-related ecosystems that require access to groundwater to maintain their assemblages, ecological processes, and services; (3) defining variables that infer that relationship. I am happy to invite you to submit a paper for this Special Issue, which will improve the knowledge base of the global scientific community, covering all groundwater-dependent ecosystems (GDEs). I invite theoretical, experimental, and applied papers related to ecosystem services and GDEs, using various datasets and interdisciplinary scientific knowledge. This Special Issue represents the possibility of evaluating the diversity of the groundwater connected organisms and building new models based on remote sensing and conservation principles.

I hereby invite papers presenting original research or reviews on the above topic and hope to receive many high-quality submissions.

Please, feel free to share this invitation with your colleagues, and I hope you will have a chance to contribute. Reviewing of the Special Issue papers should follow the standard reviewing schedule of Water.

Warm regards,

Prof. Dr. Sanja Gottstein
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Wetlands
  • Springs
  • Lakes
  • Rivers
  • Caves
  • Groundwater dependency
  • Biodiversity
  • Invertebrates
  • Phreatophytes
  • Ecological services

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

29 pages, 6125 KiB  
Article
Life History Traits of the Stygophilous Amphipod Synurella ambulans in the Hyporheic Zone of the Lower Reaches of the Upper Sava River (Croatia)
by Sanja Gottstein, Zuzana Redžović, Marijana Erk, Mirela Sertić Perić, Jelena Dautović and Mario Cindrić
Water 2023, 15(18), 3188; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15183188 - 7 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1209
Abstract
Estimating the growth and population dynamics of crustaceans is important for understanding the role of species in ecosystems and for conservation and monitoring purposes. This study investigated temporal and spatial variation in population dynamics (growth rate, instantaneous mortality rates, and longevity) of the [...] Read more.
Estimating the growth and population dynamics of crustaceans is important for understanding the role of species in ecosystems and for conservation and monitoring purposes. This study investigated temporal and spatial variation in population dynamics (growth rate, instantaneous mortality rates, and longevity) of the stygophilous freshwater amphipod Synurella ambulans (F. Müller, 1846), and influencing environmental factors. Seasonal sampling was conducted from December 2018 to October 2019 at two sampling sites (Jarun and Medsave) along the Sava River in northwestern Croatia. A Bhattacharya cohort analysis was applied to the length-frequency data using the FISAT software package. At least four cohorts were distinguished during the year. The possible influence of environmental factors on growth parameters was investigated using Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA), which revealed that the important environmental factors influencing S. ambulans abundance were water temperature and dissolved oxygen concentration. The average total body length (TBL) of females was 4.25 mm, while the TBL of males was 3.34 mm. The asymptotic length (L) and growth coefficient (K) were estimated to be 6.30 mm and 0.92 year−1 for females and 5.40 mm and 0.59 year−1 for males, respectively, at the Jarun site. L and K were estimated to be 7.20 mm and 0.34 year−1, respectively, for females and 4.00 mm and 1.20 year−1, respectively, for males at the Medsave site. Estimated total mortality (Z) for each sex had higher values for males than females at both sampling sites. The lack of ecological knowledge on S. ambulans populations and relationships with invertebrate communities in the hyporheic zone of the large river ecosystems emphasises the importance of a detailed study for protecting this species and its vulnerable ecotonal groundwater-connected environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Groundwater and Connected Ecosystems)
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17 pages, 1641 KiB  
Article
Energy Status of Stygophilous Amphipod Synurella ambulans as a Promising Biomarker of Environmental Stress in the Hyporheic Zone
by Zuzana Redžović, Marijana Erk, Sanja Gottstein and Mario Cindrić
Water 2023, 15(17), 3083; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15173083 - 28 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 910
Abstract
The hyporheic zone (HZ) is a sensitive ecotone in river ecosystems because of its biodiversity and susceptibility to human activities. Hyporheic fauna are exposed to multiple stressors that affect the physiology and metabolism of organisms and ultimately ecosystem functioning and biodiversity. This study [...] Read more.
The hyporheic zone (HZ) is a sensitive ecotone in river ecosystems because of its biodiversity and susceptibility to human activities. Hyporheic fauna are exposed to multiple stressors that affect the physiology and metabolism of organisms and ultimately ecosystem functioning and biodiversity. This study aimed to quantify adenine nucleotides in the stygophilous freshwater amphipod Synurella ambulans and to evaluate the potential of adenylate energy charge (AEC) as a physiological biomarker of general stress in the HZ of the Sava River at sites with different intensities of environmental and anthropogenic stress. Field studies were conducted seasonally (in December 2018 and April, July, and October 2019) at two sampling sites, one upstream (1-UP) and the other downstream (2-DOWN) of the discharge from the wastewater treatment plant using the standard piston pump. The amphipod population from site 1-UP had significantly higher AEC values than the population from site 2-DOWN in all seasons except summer. Coordinated changes in AEC values with the ATP/ADP ratio indicated differences in energy status between the two populations. However, no changes in the apparent equilibrium constant of adenylate kinase were observed, except in spring at site 1-UP. Multiple linear regression models showed the strongest associations of AEC with Fe and Zn accumulated in amphipods, followed by environmental factors (conductivity, dissolved O2, and concentrations of nitrites and phosphates in the interstitial water). AEC was shown to be a useful index of environmental stress in S. ambulans because it can directly measure the change in available energy and thus the metabolic stress to which the organism is exposed. Finally, seasonal and spatial variations in AEC values reflected ecological status in the HZ. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Groundwater and Connected Ecosystems)
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14 pages, 7267 KiB  
Article
Stormwater Pond Evolution and Challenges in Measuring the Hydraulic Conductivity of Pond Sediments
by Daniel C. Canfield, Serge Thomas, Rachel R. Rotz and Thomas M. Missimer
Water 2023, 15(6), 1122; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15061122 - 15 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1582
Abstract
Stormwater ponds are intended to be used for mitigating floods, improving water quality, and recharging groundwater. The sediment-water interface (SWI) of stormwater ponds exhibits properties that influence surface water–groundwater exchanges similar to naturally occurring surface water bodies. However, these ponds are rarely monitored [...] Read more.
Stormwater ponds are intended to be used for mitigating floods, improving water quality, and recharging groundwater. The sediment-water interface (SWI) of stormwater ponds exhibits properties that influence surface water–groundwater exchanges similar to naturally occurring surface water bodies. However, these ponds are rarely monitored over time to account for their functionality. As organic and inorganic sediments accumulate on the pond bed, the ability of the SWI to conduct water is influenced by sediment deposition, accumulation, and compaction, as well as organic matter content and other biological processes. Two augmented methods, a sediment core permeability cell and an in situ aluminum tube and manometer, were evaluated for measuring the hydraulic conductivity of the SWI. The grain size, hydraulic conductivity, and percentage of organic matter were compared between two ponds constructed 22 years apart. Both methods were effective at measuring the hydraulic conductivities, especially in challenging encountered field situations, albeit with some shortcomings. The in situ method yielded data from sediments with low hydraulic conductivities due to thermal heating, expansion of the water, and the release of biogenic-derived gas from the sediments within the aluminum tube. The converted sediment core permeability cells generated the most consistent measurements. Grain size and hydraulic conductivities were correlated to pond age. The mean and effective grain sizes, as well as hydraulic conductivities of the older pond, were statistically lower than the younger pond in both shallow and deeper depths. Measurement of the changes in the SWI of stormwater ponds is important to protect urbanized areas from flood damage, control the quality and quantity of runoff, and maintain their groundwater recharge function. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Groundwater and Connected Ecosystems)
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