|Hamsher, Sarah - FORMER ARS EMPLOYEE|
|Casamatta, Dale - JOHN CARROLL UNIVERSITY|
Submitted to: Ohio Journal of Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: December 21, 2003
Publication Date: April 16, 2004
Citation: HAMSHER, S., CASAMATTA, D., LUCKEYDOO, L., FAUSEY, N.R. SEASONAL AND ANNUAL METAPHYTON DYNAMICS IN A RECENTLY CONSTRUCTED WETLAND IN DEFIANCE COUNTY OHIO. OHIO JOURNAL OF SCIENCE. 2004. P. A-34. Technical Abstract: Algae are one of the primary components of a wetland community and may be responsible for the majority of carbon fixation and nutrient removal from these systems. Constructed wetlands are increasingly being utilized as a method of reducing nutrient enrichment to aquatic ecosystems due to anthropogenic effects. The purpose of this research was to document the seasonal and annual metaphyton (algae not directly attached to substrata, but loosely associated) community over a four year period (2000-2003) in a recently constructed wetland used to ameliorate agricultural drainage in Defiance County. Metaphyton samples were collected between April and November in all years. Water samples were collected concurrently with algal samples in 2000 and 2003 for further nutrient analysis. Metaphyton were identified, enumerated, and biovolume was calculated to determine dominant biomass. In each year, chlorophytes (green algae) and bacillariophytes (diatoms) comprised the majority of biomass showing marked seasonal periodicity in taxa present and overall biomass. Further, biomass was highest in September in three of the four years. Cyanobacteria, common components of constructed wetlands, were not dominant in any samples collected. Whether this is a result of nutrient saturation or extensive zooplankton herbivory remains unknown. A comparison of biomass at the inflow and outflow of the wetland shoed that biomass was not significantly different (p>0.01). Both nitrate and orthophosphate levels were significantly (p<0.01) lower by 2003, while ammonia levels were significantly (p<0.05) greater. Overall, it appears that the algal community structure changed in biomass and taxa present while simultaneously decreasing nitrate and orthophosphate levels.