Periphytic algal community in lentic environments of the Upper Paraná River floodplain: seasonal and spatial variation

Kisay Lorena Adame Montoya, BARBARA Dunck, Liliana Rodrigues



Aim: This study aimed to evaluate the influence of the seasonal variation in the hydrological regime and of limnological variables on species richness of periphytic algae in lakes of the Upper Paraná River floodplain. Methods: The study area is located in the last undammed stretch of the Paraná River in this floodplain, in which three lakes were sampled quarterly (May, August and November 2014, and February and May 2015) for one year. The periphytic material was obtained from petioles of the aquatic macrophyte Eichhornia azurea (Sw.) Kunth. Results: We registered 149 taxa of periphytic algae, distributed in 9 classes. Algae richness changed as a function of the seasonal dynamics of the Paraná River hydrological regime. Water level fluctuations directly influenced periphytic algae species, and during periods of high water level, there was also an increase in species richness. The limnological variables showed a close relationship with the hydrological regime, and the assimilable nutrients and turbidity were the abiotic factors that most influenced the algal community. The following species were present in all lakes: Fragilaria capucina Desmazières, Gomphonema gracile Ehrenberg and Navicula cryptotenella Lange-Bertalot (Bacillariophyceae) and two species of the genus Oedogonium (Oedogoniophyceae). Conclusion: The hydrological regime of the Paraná River played an important role in structuring the periphytic algae, and together with temporal variations of the limnological variables, influenced the species richness of these organisms in these floodplain lakes.  


periphyton; hydrological regime; species richness; limnological variables.

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