Effects of local land use on riparian vegetation, water quality, and in situ toxicity
The conversion of riparian forests into agricultural land results in the loss of water quality and aquatic biota health. The objectives of this study were therefore to determine the proportion of land use with emphasis on the type of vegetation cover; evaluate the limnological parameters and concentration of inorganic elements in the water of the São José stream in the Dourados River Basin, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil; correlate land use with the concentrations of inorganic elements in water; and evaluate the risk to preservation aquatic biota and in situ toxic effect on Astyanax lacustris. We collected samples from the São José Stream in 2020 and evaluated land use with high resolution aerial images. The inorganic elements in water samples were quantified using inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry. In the surroundings of the São José stream, a reduction in riparian forest was observed with a proportion of only 16.32% of the area and the predominance of agricultural areas with 75.06%. The concentrations of dissolved oxygen (1.510 mg L-1) and P (> 0.235 mg L-1) in the water did not comply with the national legislation. In addition, Al and P indicated risks regarding the conservation of aquatic biota (risk quotient >1). The in situ evaluation of A. lacustris also revealed toxicity in the water. The results indicate environmental imbalance in the São José stream, requiring mitigation measures for its restoration and the sustainable use of its resources.
Keywords: anthropic action, inorganic contaminants, risks for aquatic biota.
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