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Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management
World Bank assisted National Agricultural Research Project (NARP) - University of Port Harcourt
ISSN: 1119-8362
Vol. 10, No. 1, 2006, pp. 89-95
Bioline Code: ja06015
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management, Vol. 10, No. 1, 2006, pp. 89-95

 en Phytoplankton Diversity in the Cross River Estuary of Nigeria


Studies on the species composition, relative abundance, spatial distribution and diversity of phytoplankton assemblages in the Cross River Estuary were carried out for twenty-four months, across six (6) sampling stations. A total of 105 species of 57 genera, belonging to 5 families was observed. Bacillariophyceae (Diatom) was the most abundant phytoplankton family, constituting 71.58% of total Algal density, followed by Chlorophyceae (Green algae) with 13.84%, Cyanobacteria (Blue-green algae) with 12.69%, while Euglenophyceae (Green flagellates) and Dinophyceae (Dinoflagellates) recorded 0.88% and 1.01% respectively, of total phytoplankton abundance. Bacillariophyceae showed progressive importance from stations 1 to 6 while chlorophyceae and Euglenophyceae were more abundant in stations 1, 2, and 3. Cyanobacteria however, showed no spatial bias, whereas Dinophyceae were observed only in stations 4, 5 and 6. Bacillarlophyceae was the most dominant family, while chlorophyceae and cyanobacteria were observed to be subdominant groups. Similarity of species occurrence was generally observed in stations 1 and 2, station 3 and 4 and stations 5 and 6. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed significant variation (P<0.05) in community structure between stations 1, 5 and 6 whereas stations 1, 2 and 3 showed no significant difference (P>0.05) in composition of phytoplankton assemblages. High abundance of certain cyanobacteria taxa indicated environmental degradation.

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