BENTHIC COMMUNITIES OF FRESHWATER ECOSYSTEMS IN THE INDIAN DESERT : A REVIEWAnju Kumari Suthar & Meera Srivastava
The present study is an attempt to review the benthic fauna of water bodies in and around Bikaner, Rajasthan, a part of the Indian desert region. It is a hot desert where the waters show typical desertic characteristics being alkaline, hard, a little saline with good oxity value and wide thermal ranges. The macrobenthic population is represented by fourteen diverge animal genera belonging to Annelida, Arthropoda and Mollusca. The taxa diversity Is noted as the lowest in Kodemdesar village pond and greatest in Devikundsagar pond, while the highest population is noted in Harsolao pond (2447.5 x I 03/m2) and minimum in Kodemdesar pond (3.8 x 103/m2). The arthropods are recorded as the most abundant and widely distributed animal group. The review suggests that the occurrence and abundance of macrobenthic fauna is affected by factors such as texture and hardness of the sediments, temperature. depth, dissolved oxygen, vegetation, pH, electrical conductivity, total dissolved solids, total alkalinity, 'chlorides and sulphates.
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