Aquatic Macrophytes Composition in Lentic Water Bodies - Comparison Between the Ecoregions in Bulgaria

Anita Tosheva1 and Ivan Traykov2

 

 

1 Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski", Faculty of Biology, Department of Botany, 8 Dragan Tsankov, blvd., Sofia 1164, Bulgaria, E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

2 Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski", Faculty of Biology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Protection, 8 Dragan Tsankov, blvd., Sofia 1164, Bulgaria, E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

 

Abstract

The aim of this study was to collect and analyze the data on the biodiversity of vascular plants in lentic water bodies. Up to now we have investigated 110 standing water bodies (lakes and reservoirs) situated at different altitudes on the territories of the two ecoregions in Bulgaria (12-Pontic Province and 7-Eastern Balkans). The accent of the study is put on reservoir macrophyte composition, as a biological element for assessment of the ecological status of the water bodies. So far, 99 species of aquatic plants were found, belonging to 65 genera and 40 families. There is no difference between the two ecoregions, according to the species encountered, except for Isoetes lacustris, Subularia aquatica and Sparganium angustifolium (Eastern Balkans) and Strationtes aloides and Azolla filiculoides (Pontic Province).

Keywords: aquatic plants, Bulgaria, lakes, reservoirs, Utricularia australis, WFD.

 

 

Introduction

 

Despite its small territory Bulgaria has quite a rich and diverse flora, which is due to the medial geographic location of the country, its varied landscape and its geological history. As a result, a total of 4102 vascular plant species (without mosses) occur in the country, which is more than half of the flora on the Balkan Peninsula (Assyov et al., 2012), of which the aquatic plants account for up to 9%. The accent of the study is put on reservoir macrophyte composition, as a biological element for assessment of the ecological status of the water bodies.

The main studies on the composition of aquatic macrophytes in Bulgaria are the ground works of Jordanov, D. (1931), Kochev & Yordanoff (1981) and Kochev (1983) among others. Preliminary investigation on the applicability of macrophytes as indicators for the assessment of water quality is presented in Uzunov (2005).

In 2010 Gecheva et al. (2010) proposed a methodology for monitoring and assessment of rivers and lakes according to their macrophyte communities.

The methodology was later modified with the inclusion of eleven macrophite species in the indicator species list and by modifying the indicator groups of some species (Belkinova & Gecheva, 2013). As macrophytes are confined to specific habitats (Schaminee et al., 1995; Murphy, 2002) and react to changes in their optimal habitat (Barko et al., 1986; Van Geest, 2005) they can be used as indicators for changes in the trophic conditions.

The aim of this study was to collect and analyze data about the biodiversity of vascular plants in the water bodies from the two ecoregions in Bulgaria - 12-Pontic Province and 7-Eastern Balkans (Illies, 1978; WFD, 2000).