Effects of sediment resuspension on nutrient concentrations and algal biomass in reservoirs of the Central Plains

Abstract

Dzialowski, A.R., S.H. Wang, N.C. Lim, J.H. Beury and D.G. Huggins. 2008. Effects of sediment resuspension on algal biomass and nutrient concentrations in reservoirs of the Central Plains. Lake Reserv. Manage. 24:313-320. Historically, lake and reservoir management has focused on controlling external nutrient loading. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that internal mechanisms, such as the episodic resuspension of benthic sediments, can also contribute to the processes of eutrophication. We conducted laboratory bioassay experiments to determine how resuspended sediments affected nutrient concentrations and algal biomass in four eutrophic reservoirs of the Central Plains. Surficial sediments and surface water were collected from each reservoir and returned to the laboratory where they were added to 1-L bioassay bottles at five turbidity concentrations (0, 50, 150, 250, and 500 NTUs). Sediments in the bioassay bottles were resuspended daily, and algal biomass (measured as relative fluorescence) was measured for 11–14 days. Resuspended sediments at the lowest experimental turbidity concentration, 50 NTUs, had highly significant effects on algal biomass in each of the sediment resuspension bioassays. Algal biomass appeared to increase following experimental sediment resuspension due to an increase in available nutrients and/or the establishment of algae (meroplankton) from the sediment. Overall, our results highlight the importance of considering internal mechanisms when developing reservoir management and restoration plans for these important ecosystems.

6 Figures and Tables

Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Dzialowski2005EffectsOS, title={Effects of sediment resuspension on nutrient concentrations and algal biomass in reservoirs of the Central Plains}, author={Andrew R. Dzialowski and Shih-Hsien Wang and Niang-Choo Lim and Jason H. Beury and Donald G. Huggins}, year={2005} }