Phytoplankton as bioindicators of water quality in Nasarawa reservoir, Katsina State Nigeria
Abstract: Aim Phytoplankton monitoring as bioindicators to assess the health of the Nasarawa reservoir and also to evaluate the relationship between phytoplankton and reservoir environmental variables. Methods Phytoplankton and water samples from Nasarawa reservoir (Nigeria) were collected and analysed for ten months (February, 2018 to November, 2018) using standard methods at five sampling sites. Results A total of 38 genera belonging to five major families such as: Bacillariophyceae (42%), Chlorophyceae (24%) Cyanophyceae (13%), Deemidiaceae (18%) and Euglenophyceae (3%) were recorded. Four Phytoplankton classes; Bacillariophyta, Chlorophyta Cyanophyta, and Desmidiaceae show positive close relation with dissolved oxygen, pH, transparency, and total dissolved solids. The overall phytoplankton density in the reservoir was higher in dry season than the wet season. Palmer pollution index was employed to study the water quality of the reservoir. The total score was calculated to be 25, showing evidence of high organic pollution. Conclusions The presence of organic pollution indicators Closterium sp, Navicula sp, Nitzschia sp, Synedra sp, Chlamydomonas sp, Cyclotella sp and Anacystis sp is a warning sign of the deteriorating condition of the water quality in the reservoir. Measures need to be enforced to reduce the rate of pollution of the reservoir arising from the human activities in the catchment of the reservoir.