Sustainable Water Resources Management

, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 1815–1832 | Cite as

Consequences of sand mining on water quality and instream biota in alluvial stream: a case-specific study in South Bengal River, India

  • Raj Kumar BhattacharyaEmail author
  • Nilanjana Das Chatterjee
  • Gour Dolui
Original Article


In this paper, an attempt has been made to document consequences of river sand mining on water quality and instream biota in an alluvial channel as Kangsabati River, India. Water Quality Index (WQI) is used to identify the adverse effects of water quality on species diversity, richness, and evenness of the aquatic community. Physicochemical parameters (PP) such as pH, dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids, electric conductivity, salinity, biological oxygen demand, magnesium cation, and turbidity are analyzed from 27 representative sampling stations as sandchar, mining, and pit sites along the upper, middle, and lower course. Pearson correlation indicates that pH and magnesium cation is the most significant parameters with WQI. Principal component analysis denotes good water quality (< 50) concentrated in sandchar sites, while poor (50–70) and very poor (> 70) water qualities are presence in mining and pit sites. Applying Simpson’s index, Simpson’s index of diversity, Simpson’s reciprocal index, and Shannon–Wiener diversity index on instream biota, those vary from sandchar (0.19, 0.81, 5.57, and − 1.34) to mining (0.11, 0.89, 9.23, and − 1.39) and pit sites (0.12, 0.90, 10.68, and − 1.50). Maximum Margalef’s index of species indicated the richness of species types in mining sites (4.62), with minimum mean values in sandchar sites (3.64). Contrastingly, Pielou’s evenness index is high in sandchar sites (− 1.05) and low in mining sites (− 1.49). Therefore, significant physicochemical parameters such as PH, dissolved oxygen, magnesium cation, and electric conductivity changes the diversity index, species richness and evenness in mining and pit along the middle and lower courses caused by sand mining.


Physicochemical parameters (PP) Sand mining Instream biota Species richness 



Authors are also grateful to the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions to improve the quality of this article. We thank the University Science Instrumentation Centre (USIC), Vidyasagar University for providing the instrument facility (water analyzer). Authors are thankful to District Land & Land Reforms officer of the Paschim Midnapore and Bankura districts for providing valuable data regarding long-term and short-term sand minings of the Kangsabati River. Thanks to Mr. Kausik Das for the help of preliminary data analysis.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geography and Environment ManagementVidyasagar UniversityMidnaporeIndia

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