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Impact of the Limnoperna fortunei (Dunker, 1857) invasion on the zooplankton of small hydropower dam reservoirs

Grant number: 19/01436-3
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2019
Effective date (End): December 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology - Ecosystems Ecology
Principal researcher:Marcos Gomes Nogueira
Grantee:Gabriel Mariano Silva
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IBB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil


During the last years, there was an increase in the number of hydropower plants in Brazil, especially small hydropower plants (SHPs). The river damming promotes the growth of plankton communities, enhancing their importance in the matter and energy flow. However, the introduction and establishment of the invasive species of Mollusca Bivalvia Limnoperna fortune (golden mussel) should change the reservoir limnology and the biotic interactions in the water column, due to the massive presence of free-living larvae. In this study, we intend to evaluate the effects of golden mussel in the limnological variables as well as in the zooplankton community's composition and structure (absolute and relative abundance, diversity, uniformity). We selected two reservoirs, Retiro and Palmeiras SHPs, both in Sapucaí-Mirim River (north of São Paulo State) about 20 km from each other. The first one, downstream located, the invasive species is completely established but it is absent from the second. The study will comprise samplings and analyses of zooplankton samples (vertical hauls - net of 68 µm), determination of transparency, depth and vertical profiles of temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, conductivity, turbidity, dissolved solids, and redox potential. Samplings will be carried out in 9 points (three distinct areas) per reservoir, during rainy-summer (March 2019) and dry-winter (July 2019). The results comparisons will permit us to infer the consequences of the golden mussel entrance into the system.

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