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Assessment of Pollution with Aquatic Bryophytes in Maritsa River (Bulgaria)


Bryophyte species composition and 26 common physico-chemical and inorganic chemical parameters were assessed at 23 selected sites in the Maritsa River (BG) over a 4-year period. Principal components analyses (PCA) of both bryophytes and water variables distinguished different locations in the ecosystem. The data imply that the content of elements measured in bryophytes represents river contamination, while species compositional patterns reflect hydromorphology and general degradation. This study for the first time combined aquatic bryophyte occurrence, the bioaccumulation of 17 macro-and microelements in 17 species, and 26 water factors by principal components analysis (PCA) in an assessment of river pollution.

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We would like to thank Mrs Rositsa Andreeva for her assistance in Analytical Laboratory, IBER, BAS. Also we are thankful to Mrs Galina Stoyanova, Chief of Certified Laboratory Geochemistry, University of Mining, Sofia, and to Mr Zlatko Gospodinov, who provided field assistance, and to Editor-in-Chief Dr. Herbert Nigg, Associate Editor and three anonymous peer reviewers for their outstanding contributions to this manuscript.

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Correspondence to Lilyana Yurukova.

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Gecheva, G., Yurukova, L. & Ganeva, A. Assessment of Pollution with Aquatic Bryophytes in Maritsa River (Bulgaria). Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 87, 480 (2011).

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  • Aquatic bryophytes
  • River pollution
  • Heavy metals
  • Toxic elements