Can the Short-Term Toxicity of Water-Soluble Jet Fuel Hydrocarbons Produce Long-Lasting Effects in Lake Plankton Communities?
Final technical rept. 3 Jan 82-28 Feb 83,
KENT STATE UNIV OH DEPT OF BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
Pagination or Media Count:
The intent of the research was to explore, using modified algal bioassays, the possibility that algal communities in natural situations may be affected to a greater extent than would be predicted by the short residence time of toluene in water and by the bioassays that have been conducted to date. Algal cells killed or inactivated by toluene do not return nutrients to the medium. In lakes, these cells may sink out of the upper waters, removing the nutrients necessary for community recovery. Recovery may be a function of the rate of nutrient re-supply rather than of the rate of hydrocarbon volatilization. The degree of nutrient limitation and indeed the limiting nutrient involved may modify the response of the community to toluene. A nutrient-limited community may be more affected by toluene than a non-nutrient-limited one. In a nitrogen-limited community, algal growth may be stimulated. Differential toxicity may affect the outcome of species competition for nutrients. The species that is least susceptible to toluene may obtain a numerical advantage, at least temporarily, while the other species are inhibited. The duration of this advantage may depend on the rate to which nutrients are returned into the medium.