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Effect of copper sulphate treatment on natural phytoplanktonic communities
Le Jeune, A.-H.; Charpin, M.; Deluchat, V.; Briand, J.-F.; Lenain, J.-F.; Baudu, M.; Amblard, C. (2006). Effect of copper sulphate treatment on natural phytoplanktonic communities. Aquat. Toxicol. 80(3): 267-280.
In: Aquatic Toxicology. Elsevier Science: Tokyo; New York; London; Amsterdam. ISSN 0166-445X, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

    Copper; Phytoplankton; Size distribution; Marine
Author keywords
    copper; phytoplankton; size-class structure; composition; watercomplexation capacity

Authors  Top 
  • Le Jeune, A.-H.
  • Charpin, M.
  • Deluchat, V.
  • Briand, J.-F.
  • Lenain, J.-F.
  • Baudu, M.
  • Amblard, C.

    Copper sulphate treatment is widely used as a global and empirical method to remove or control phytoplankton blooms without precise description of the impact on phytoplanktonic populations. The effects of two copper sulphate treatments on natural phytoplanktonic communities sampled in the spring and summer seasons, were assessed by indoor mesocosm experiments. The initial copper-complexing capacity of each water sample was evaluated before each treatment. The copper concentrations applied were 80 μg l−1 and 160 μg l−1 of copper, below and above the water complexation capacity, respectively. The phytoplanktonic biomass recovered within a few days after treatment. The highest copper concentration, which generated a highly toxic environment, caused a global decrease in phytoplankton diversity, and led to the development and dominance of nanophytoplanktonic Chlorophyceae. In mesocosms treated with 80 μg l−1 of copper, the effect on phytoplanktonic community size-class structure and composition was dependent on seasonal variation. This could be related to differences in community composition, and thus to species sensitivity to copper and to differences in copper bioavailability between spring and summer. Both treatments significantly affected cyanobacterial biomass and caused changes in the size-class structure and composition of phytoplanktonic communities which may imply modifications of the ecosystem structure and function.

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