Exploring the use of Macrophytes as Biological Indicators for Organic Pollution of Chanchaga River in North Central Nigeria

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Applied Hydrobiology Unit, Department of Animal Biology, Federal University of Technology, P.M.B 65, Minna, Niger State, Nigeria

2 Department of Botany, Delta State University, P.M.B. 1, Abraka, Nigeria


Macrophytes are creatures with low versatility and cannot stay away from any mix of streamflow, nutrient accessibility, and other physical and chemical attributes that impact their survival in the aquatic system. Sampling for macrophytes in Chanchaga River was conducted monthly for a 6-month period (May - October 2019). Sampling stations were selected at approximately equal distance along the streamline, the aquatic vegetation were surveyed, and some environmental variables were analysed using standard methods. Results obtained indicated that temperature ranged from 24.6-28.4°C; pH 6.4 -9.7; Electrical conductivity 28.0-79.0μS cm-1; Total dissolved solids 16-75 mg L-1; Dissolved oxygen(DO) 1.3-5.2 mg L-1; Nitrate 0.217-0.654 mg L-1; Phosphate 0.084-0.211 mg L-1; Biological oxygen demand (BOD) 0.89-5.4 mg L-1 and total alkalinity 8.00-11.00 mgL-1 for the study period. A total of eleven (11) macrophyte species belonging to ten genera and eight families were identified during the entire study. Variations in terms of families showed that Araliaceae was the most abundant followed by Poaceae, while Cyperaceae had more species throughout the study period. The high frequency of Araliaceae, Cyperaceae, and Poaceae families suggests that the environmental characteristics favour these species. We propose the use of Cyperus digitatus, Cyperus papyrus and Mimosa spp. as macrophytes indicators of organic pollution in Chanchaga River.


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