Impact of macrophytes on phytoplankton in eutrophic peri-urban ponds, implications for pond management and restoration

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A 4-year monitoring of 16 eutrophic peri-urban ponds located in the southeastern periphery of Brussels has shown that different aquatic plants have different interrelationship with phytoplankton. Extensive submerged macrophytic vegetation has shown the strongest effect on phytoplankton biomass and composition and seems to be crucial for the maintenance of the clear-water state through its capacity to buffer the effects of nutrient enrichment. Restoration of submerged macrophytes seems to be essential for successful biomanipulation of eutrophic ponds. Biomanipulation induced revegetation with submerged macrophytes resulted in the restoration of the clear-water state in the two biomanipulated ponds. Fish removal not accompanied with the restoration of submerged macrophytes in the third biomanipulated pond did not lead to the decrease in phytoplankton biomass. The removal of submerged macrophytes from a clear-water pond invariably led to a shift towards the turbid state often accompanied with cyanobacterial bloom formation. Profuse growth of filamentous green algae also had a negative effect on phytoplankton growth, albeit less strong than that of submerged macrophytes. Floating-leaved plants did not show a significant effect on phytoplankton biomass outside their stands.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2007

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  • The Belgian Journal of Botany (now known as Plant Ecology and Evolution) is an international journal open to all fields of plant sciences. Please note, however, that papers restricted to purely nomenclatural matters or to floristical data of only local interest will not be accepted. The Journal appears in one volume of two issues per year. It publishes reviews, original research papers, short notes, letters to the editor, and book reviews. Click here for current issues of this journal
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