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Limnology

pp 1–14 | Cite as

Determining suitable submerged macrophyte biomass in terms of dissolved oxygen concentration and biodiversity in the South Basin of Lake Biwa, Japan

  • Kanako IshikawaEmail author
  • Hiroki Haga
  • Eiso Inoue
  • Syuhei Ban
Special Feature Ecological and limnological bases for management of overgrown macrophytes

Abstract

After a regime shift in eutrophic lakes from a turbid water state with phytoplankton blooms to a clear water state, troublesome issues caused by excessive growths of aquatic plants occurred. This study investigated the relationships between submerged macrophyte biomass, and associated fauna and flora, and environmental factors at 52 stations in the South Basin of Lake Biwa. Polynomial regression analysis gave 5 significant regression equations (P < 0.05, n = 52) of submerged macrophyte biomass versus depth, periphyton biomass, and periphyton, epifauna and epi-shellfish taxa richness. We added one equation (P < 0.1, n = 52), which was not significant, but was important for complying with the environmental quality standard for submerged macrophyte biomass versus bottom dissolved oxygen (DO) in Japan. Eleven significant regression equations of percentage volume submerged macrophyte infestation (PVI) versus depth, bottom DO, east–west and north–south averaged from surface to bottom current velocities absolute value, total chlorophyll a (chl.a) and chl.a of green and blue-green algae, epifauna biomass, submerged macrophyte species richness, periphyton and epifauna taxa richness (P < 0.05, n = 52) were also generated. When submerged macrophyte biomass was > 6000 g m−2 or PVI was > 60%, DO concentrations became too low for the survival of fish and invertebrates (< 4.3 mg l−1). In addition, the cubic regressions of periphyton and epifauna taxa richness showed inflection points were at 3000 g m−2 of submerged macrophyte biomass. Epifaunal biomass, submerged macrophyte species richness, periphyton and epifaunal taxa richness showed inflection points at 30% PVI. Previous studies suggested that regime shifts occur at particular thresholds, and community structure and biodiversity change significantly. Therefore, we assumed regression inflection points were threshold indicators. We recommend an appropriate submerged macrophyte biomass of 3000–6000 g m−2 or a PVI of 30–60% to maintain the ecosystem in a clear water state with fewer troublesome issues — starting at these levels macrophyte growth should be controlled in Lake Biwa.

Keywords

Aquatic plants Water weeds Regime shift Lake management Harvesting vegetation 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the Lake Biwa Environmental Research Institute, Lake Biwa Museum and an Environmental Research and Technology Development Fund subsidy from the Ministry of the Environment, Japan (4-1406(3), 2014-2016). Kanako Ishikawa was also financially supported for data analysis by JSPS KAKENHI 18H01569. The authors would also like to thank the research staff and students of Soka University and University of Shiga Prefecture for field support and data analysis.

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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Limnology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lake Biwa Environmental Research InstituteOtsuJapan
  2. 2.Lake Biwa MuseumKusatsuJapan
  3. 3.School of Environmental ScienceUniversity of Shiga PrefectureHikoneJapan

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