Microbial communities in floodplain ecosystems in relation to altered flow regimes and experimental flooding
- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
River floodplains are spatially diverse ecosystems that respond quickly to flow variations and disturbance. However, it remains unclear how flow alteration and hydrological disturbance impacts the structure and biodiversity of complex microbial communities in these ecosystems. Here, we examined the spatial and seasonal dynamics of microbial communities in aquatic (benthic) and terrestrial habitats of three hydrologically contrasting (natural flow, residual flow, hydropeaking flow) floodplain systems. Microbial communities (alpha and beta diversity) differed more among floodplain habitats than between riverine floodplains. Microbial communities in all systems displayed congruent seasonal effects. In the residual and hydropeaking systems, an experimental flood was released from a reservoir to mimic a natural high flow event causing hydromorphological disturbance. The experimental flood caused a temporary shift in microbial communities by releasing microbes from the reservoir as well as redistributing communities among floodplain habitats. The flood-mediated shift in community structures had only a transient impact as pelagic bacteria did not persist within floodplain habitats over time after the flood. More frequent pulse disturbances might lead to an alternate structure of bacterial communities in floodplains over time. Show more
Journal / seriesThe Science of The Total Environment
Pages / Article No.
SubjectHydrologic disturbance; Mass effect; Hydrologic connectivity; Ecohydrology; Microbial diversity
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