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Research Paper | February 1, 2014

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Biodiversity and seasonal dynamics of the cladoceran community in the wetlands of the Gharb and Loukkos plains in Morocco

Rabia Aoujdad, Abdelaziz Maqboul, Abdelhak Driouich, Mohammed Rhiat, Hicham Labioui, Mohamed Fadli

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.4(2), 104-110, February 2014

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to describe the composition and structure of cladocerans of littoral areas with and without macrophytes from the wetlands in the Gharb and Loukkos plains (Morocco). Samples were taken between September 2004 and August 2005. The sampling of cladocerans and environmental variables was performed at four fixed points, using plankton net. Twenty-four (24) cladoceran species were recorded among the 50 species recorded in all Moroccan stagnant water. The most important species richness was observed in the permanent facies sites with 22 species, while the lowest species richness was observed in the temporary facies sites with 8 species. The average species richness was observed in the of semi- permanent facies sites with 11 species. The short duration of submersion in aquatic environments causes the seasonal extinction of species that do not develop adaptive strategies, which affects species richness of aquatic fauna in temporary habitats. Quantitative seasonal fluctuation in densities of cladocerans in the typological facies is marked by an important development since winter into summer. The lowest abundances were recorded during the winter. This limited development is due to low temperatures, which causes a slowdown in growth and spawning, and the scarcity of resources assimilated by phytoplankton cladocerans during the winter season. These results suggest that rainfall and temperature exert greater control on the dynamics of cladocerans in the studied ponds, and demonstrate the importance of these ecosystems to biodiversity in the humid region.

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Biodiversity and seasonal dynamics of the cladoceran community in the wetlands of the Gharb and Loukkos plains in Morocco

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