TEMPORAL AND SPATIAL CHANGES IN THE PHYTOPLANKTON DYNAMICS AT THE TARKWA-BAY JETTY IN RELATION TO ENVIRONMENTAL CHARACTERISTICSI.C. Onyema, D.I. Nwankwo and K.O. Owolabi
The phytoplankton composition and abundance variation at the Tarkwa-bay jetty was investigated for six months (July December, 2004) in relation to environmental characteristics. Tidal sea water inflow and rain events were key factors governing the hydrology and water chemistry characteristics of the area.The phytoplankton species encountered were pointers to the water status which reflected its proximity to the sea and its influence. Four classes of phytoplankton were identified, the Bacillariophyta (48 taxa), Dinophyceae (4 taxa), Chlorophyceae (3 taxa) and Cyanophyceae (2 taxa). Furthermore, the micro-flora recorded were chiefly neritic species. It is possible that the reduced species diversity recorded comparative to other similar studies in the region could be a reflection of the effect of stresses from habour related activities and refined oil discharges in the area. High tidal activities in the area may be helping to prevent the retention of waste ladenned water by eventual flow-dilution to the sea.
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