Phytoplankton and water quality in a Mediterranean drinking-water reservoir (Marathonas Reservoir, Greece)
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Phytoplankton and water quality of Marathonas drinking-water Reservoir were examined for the first time. During the study period (July–September 2007), phytoplankton composition was indicative of eutrophic conditions although phytoplankton biovolume was low (max. 2.7 mm3 l − 1). Phytoplankton was dominated by cyanobacteria and diatoms, whereas desmids and dinoflagellates contributed with lower biovolume values. Changing flushing rate in the reservoir (up to 0.7% of reservoir’s water volume per day) driven by water withdrawal and occurring in pulses for a period of 15–25 days was associated with phytoplankton dynamics. Under flushing pulses: (1) biovolume was low and (2) both ‘good’ quality species and the tolerant to flushing ‘nuisance’ cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa dominated. According to the Water Framework Directive, the metrics of phytoplankton biovolume and cyanobacterial percentage (%) contribution indicated a moderate ecological water quality. In addition, the total biovolume of cyanobacteria as well as the dominance of the known toxin-producing M. aeruginosa in the reservoir’s phytoplankton indicated a potential hazard for human health according to the World Health Organization.
KeywordsDrinking-water reservoir Flushing rate Cyanobacteria Ecological water quality Management WFD
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