Negative effects of Microcystis blooms on the crustacean plankton in an enclosure experiment in the subtropical China

CHEN Fei-zhou , XIE Ping , TANG Hui-juan , LIU Hong


Received ,Revised , Accepted , Available online

Volume 17,2005,Pages 775-781

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Effects of Microcystis blooms on the crustacean plankton were studied using enclosure experiments during July-September,2000. Eight enclosures were set in the hypereutrophic Donghu Lake. Different nutrient concentrations through additional nutrient and sediment in enclosures were expected to result in different abundance of Microcystis. From July to early August, the phytoplankton community was dominated by Chlorophyta, Cryptophyta, Bacillariophyta and Cyanophyta other than Microcystis aeruginosa. M. aeruginosa showed a rapid increase during early August in all enclosures and predominated. Crustacean plankton was dominated by the herbivorous Moina micrura, Diaphanosoma brachyurum and Ceriodaphnia cornuta, and the predaceous Mesocyclops sp. and Thermocyclops taihokuensis. During the pre-bloom period, the dynamics of M. micrura population appeared to be mainly affected by the predaceous cyclopoids. With the development of Microcystis blooms, such interaction between M. micrura and cyclopoids seemed weakened, especially when the Microcystis biomass was high. But there was no apparent influence on the interaction between Leptodora kindti and its zooplanktonic prey. The density of two cyclopoids decreased with the enhancement of Microcystis. The density decline of M. micrura was caused by both predation and inhibition by Microcystis. The low food availability of other edible phytoplankton during the blooms led to low densities of both C. comuta and D. brachyurum by late August. lt appears that dense Microcystis blooms exert strong negative effects on the herbivorous cladocerans and the predaceous cyclopoids.

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