Water chemistry and periphyton biomass in the Rideau River: Have conditions changed after 24 years?

Rideau River
Submitted: 17 November 2021
Accepted: 29 June 2022
Published: 4 August 2022
Abstract Views: 2474
PDF: 360
HTML: 143
Publisher's note
All claims expressed in this article are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of their affiliated organizations, or those of the publisher, the editors and the reviewers. Any product that may be evaluated in this article or claim that may be made by its manufacturer is not guaranteed or endorsed by the publisher.

Authors

Over the past three decades, the Rideau River (Ontario, Canada) watershed has experienced a land-use change from rural and agricultural land towards urban land, and the introduction and expansion of invasive species. This study examined spatial and temporal patterns of periphyton biomass (chlorophyll-a and ash-free dry mass) collected from riffle zones in 1995 and 2019 along a 66-km stretch of the Rideau River. This study also examined long-term changes in water nutrient and chloride concentrations collected through the Provincial Water Quality Monitoring Network between 2000 and 2018. Declines in total nitrogen between 2000 and 2018 occurred in areas that have not experienced urbanization since the 2000s. In contrast, declines in total phosphorus and increases in chloride between 2000 and 2018 occurred at midstream and downstream sites that have undergone urbanization during the same time period. Conductivity also showed an increase with distance downstream similarly in both 1995 and 2019. Average total phosphorus and total Kjeldahl nitrogen concentrations were lower in 2019 compared to 1995 but did not increase with distance downstream as seen in many river systems, including the Rideau River, in earlier years. Periphyton biomass did not change along the length of the river between 1995 and 2019, despite the declines in nutrient concentrations. These findings highlight the persistence of riverine periphyton in a multi-use watershed experiencing ongoing anthropogenic changes.

Dimensions

Altmetric

PlumX Metrics

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

Citations

Alexander RB, Smith RA, 2006. Trends in the nutrient enrichment of U.S. rivers during the late 20th century and their relation to changes in probable stream trophic conditions. Limnol. Oceanogr. 51:639–654. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4319/lo.2006.51.1_part_2.0639
Bazinet NL, Gilbert BM, Wallace AM, 2010. A comparison of urbanization effects on stream benthic macroinvertebrates and water chemistry in an urban and an urbanizing basin in Southern Ontario, Canada. Water Qual. Res. J. Canada 45:327–341. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2166/wqrj.2010.035
Biggs BJF, 1995. The contribution of flood disturbance, catchment geology and land use to the habitat template of periphyton in stream ecosystems. Freshwater Biol. 33:419–438. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2427.1995.tb00404.x
Biggs BJF, 2000. Eutrophication of streams and rivers: Dissolved nutrient-chlorophyll relationships for benthic algae. J. N. Am. Benthol. Soc. 19:17–31. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/1468279
Biggs BJF, Close ME, 1989. Periphyton biomass dynamics in gravel bed rivers: the relative effects of flows and nutrients. Freshwater Biol. 22:209–231. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2427.1989.tb01096.x
Biggs BJF, Stevenson RJ, Lowe RL, 1998. A habitat matrix conceptual model for stream periphyton. Arch. Hydrobiol. 143:21–56. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1127/archiv-hydrobiol/143/1998/21
Burnison BK, 1980. Modified dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) extraction for chlorophyll analysis of phytoplankton. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 37:729–733. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f80-095
Butler RW, 1980. The concept of a tourist area cycle of evolution: Implications for management of resources. Can. Geogr. 24:5–12. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1541-0064.1980.tb00970.x
Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME), 2016. Guidance Manual for Developing Nutrient Guidelines for Rivers and Streams. 98 pp.
Canadian Heritage Rivers System, 2021. Rideau Waterway. Accessed April 20, 2021. Available from: https://chrs.ca/en/rivers/rideau-waterway
Carpenter SRR, Caraco NF, Correll DL, Howarth RW, Sharpley AN, Smith VHH, 1998. Nonpoint pollution of surface waters with phosphorus and nitrogen. Ecol. Appl. 8:559–568. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1890/1051-0761(1998)008[0559:NPOSWW]2.0.CO;2
Chambers PA, McGoldrick DJ, Brua RB, Vis C, Culp JM, Benoy GA, 2012. Development of environmental thresholds for nitrogen and phosphorus in streams. J. Environ. Qual. 41:7–20. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2134/jeq2010.0273
Chapman, DV, World Health Organization, UNESCO, United Nations Environment Programme, ‎1996‎. Water quality assessments: a guide to the use of biota, sediments and water in environmental monitoring. 2nd ed. E & FN Spon.
Charron L, Kitchen B, O’Dell A, Stephenson B, 1982. Multiple use management of the Rideau and Trent-Severn waterway reservoir systems. Can. Water Resour. J. 7:335–349. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4296/cwrj0702335
Chételat J, Pick FR, Morin A, 2000. Patterns of periphyton biomass in three eastern Ontario rivers ranging in trophic status. Verhandl. Int. Verein Limnol. 27:3148–3153. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03680770.1998.11898258
Chételat J, Pick FR, Morin A, Hamilton PB, 1999. Periphyton biomass and community composition in rivers of different nutrient status. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 56:560–569. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f98-197
Corsi SR, Cicco LA De, Lutz MA, Hirsch RM, 2015. River chloride trends in snow-affected urban watersheds: Increasing concentrations outpace urban growth rate and are common among all seasons. Sci. Total Environ. 508:488–497. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.12.012
DeBues MJ, Eimers MC, Watmough SA, Mohamed MN, Mueller J, 2019. Stream nutrient and agricultural land-use trends from 1971 to 2010 in Lake Ontario tributaries. J. Great Lakes Res. 45:752–761. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jglr.2019.05.002
Dodds WK, Smith VH, Lohman K, 2002. Nitrogen and phosphorus relationships to benthic algal biomass in temperate streams. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 59:865–874. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f02-063
Dudley JL, Arthurs W, Hall TJ, 2001. A comparison of methods used to estimate river rock surface areas. J. Freshwater Ecol. 16:257–261. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02705060.2001.9663810
Godwin KS, Hafner SD, Buff MF, 2003. Long-term trends in sodium and chloride in the Mohawk River, New York: The effect of fifty years of road-salt application. Environ. Pollut. 124:273-281. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0269-7491(02)00481-5
Hill BH, Herlihy AT, Kaufmann PR, Stevenson RJ, McCormick FH, Burch Johnson C, 2000. Use of periphyton assemblage data as an index of biotic integrity. J. N. Am. Benthol. Soc. 19:50-67. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/1468281
Hofmann N, Filoso G, Schofield M, 2005. The loss of dependable agricultural land in Canada. Rural Small T. Canada Anal. Bull. 6. Ottawa: Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 21-006-X.
Huser BJ, Futter MN, Wang R, Fölster J, 2018. Persistent and widespread long-term phosphorus declines in Boreal lakes in Sweden. Sci. Total Environ. 613-614:240-249. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.09.067
Ibáñez C, Peñuelas J, 2019. Changing nutrients, changing rivers. Science. 365:637-638. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aay2723
International Organization for Standardization (ISO), 1992. Norm ISO 10260:1992. Water quality - Measurement of biochemical parameters - Spectrometric determination of the chlorophyll-a concentration. Available from: https://www.iso.org/obp/ui/#iso:std:iso:10260:ed-1:v1:en
Jeffrey SW, Humphrey GF, 1975. New spectrophotometric equations for determining chlorophylls a, b, c1 and c2 in higher plants, algae and natural phytoplankton. Biochem. Physiol. Pflanz 167:191–194. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0015-3796(17)30778-3
Karst TL, Smol JP, 2000. Paleolimnological evidence of limnetic nutrient concentration equilibrium in a shallow, macrophyte-dominated lake. Aquat. Sci. 62:20–38. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s000270050073
Kaushal SS, Groffman PM, Likens GE, Belt KT, Stack WP, Kelly VR, Band LE, Fisher GT, 2005. Increased salinization of fresh water in the Northeastern United States. P. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 102:13517–13520. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0506414102
Larned ST, 2010. A prospectus for periphyton: Recent and future ecological research. J. N. Am. Benthol. Soc. 29:182–206. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1899/08-063.1
Lohman K, Jones JR, Perkins BD, 1992. Effects of nutrient enrichment and flood frequency on periphyton biomass in northern Ozark streams. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 49:1198–1205. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f92-135
Lorenzen CJ, 1967. Determination of chlorophyll and pheo‐pigments: Spectrophotometric equations. Limnol. Oceanogr. 12:343–346. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4319/lo.1967.12.2.0343
MacIsaac HJ, 1996. Potential abiotic and biotic impacts of zebra mussels on the inland waters of North America. Am. Zool. 36:287–299. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/icb/36.3.287
Martel A, 1995. Demography and growth of the exotic zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) in the Rideau River (Ontario). Can. J. Zool. 73:2244–2250. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/z95-266
Martel AL, Madill JB, 2018. Twenty-six years (1990–2015) of monitoring annual recruitment of the invasive zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) in the Rideau River, a small river system in Eastern Ontario, Canada. Can. J. Zool. 96:1071–1079. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/cjz-2017-0360
Meter RJ Van, Swan CM, Leips J, Snodgrass JW, 2011. Road salt stress induces novel food web structure and interactions. Wetlands 31:843–851. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13157-011-0199-y
Nagy CR, Lockaby GB, Kalin L, Anderson C, 2012. Effects of urbanization on stream hydrology and water quality: The Florida Gulf Coast. Hydrol. Process. 26:2019–2030. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.8336
O’Brien PJ, Wehr JD, 2010. Periphyton biomass and ecological stoichiometry in streams within an urban to rural land-use gradient. Hydrobiologia 657:89–105. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10750-009-9984-5
Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (OMECC) 2018. Provincial (Stream) Water Quality Monitoring Network. Available from: https://data.ontario.ca/dataset/provincial-stream-water-quality-monitoring-network
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR), 2019. Southern Ontario Land Resource Information System (SOLRIS) Land Use Data (version 3.0). Peterborough, Ontario. Available from: https://geohub.lio.gov.on.ca/datasets/0279f65b82314121b5b5ec93d76bc6ba
Parks Canada, 2020. Draft - Rideau Canal and Merrickville Blockhouse National Historic Sites of Canada Management Plan.
Parks Canada, 2021. Rideau Canal National Historic Site. Available from: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/lhn-nhs/on/rideau
Paul MJ, Meyer JL, 2001. Streams in the Urban Landscape. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Syst. 32:333–365. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.ecolsys.32.081501.114040
R Core Team, 2019. R: A language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna.
Raney SM, Eimers MC, 2014. Unexpected declines in stream phosphorus concentrations across southern Ontario. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 71:337–342. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/cjfas-2013-0300
Reid AJ, Carlson AK, Creed IF, Eliason EJ, Gell PA, Johnson PTJ, Kidd KA, MacCormack TJ, Olden JD, Ormerod SJ, Smol JP, Taylor WW, et al., 2019. Emerging threats and persistent conservation challenges for freshwater biodiversity. Biol. Rev. 94:849–873. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/brv.12480
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA), 2012. Lower Rideau Subwatershed Report. Manotick, Ontario.
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA), 2019. Landcover Data. Available from: https://rvcagis.github.io/jkan/datasets/rvca-landcover/
Roberts AD, Prince SD, Jantz CA, Goetz SJ, 2009. Effects of projected future urban land cover on nitrogen and phosphorus runoff to Chesapeake Bay. Ecol. Eng. 35:1758–1772. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoleng.2009.09.001
Sartory DP, Grobbelaar JU, 1984. Extraction of chlorophyll a from freshwater phytoplankton for spectrophotometric analysis. Hydrobiologia 114:177–187. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00031869
Schindler DW, 2012. The dilemma of controlling cultural eutrophication of lakes. Proc. R. Soc. B Biol. Sci. 279:4322–4333. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2012.1032
Slavik K, Peterson BJ, Deegan LA, Bowden WB, Hershey AE, Hobbie JE, 2004. Long-term responses of the Kuparuk river ecosystem to phosphorus fertilization. Ecology 85:939-954. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1890/02-4039
Smith PGR, 2015. Long-Term temporal trends in agri-environment and agricultural land use in Ontario, Canada: Transformation, transition and significance. J. Geogr. Geol. 7:32-55. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5539/jgg.v7n2p32
Sosiak A, 2002. Long-term response of periphyton and macrophytes to reduced municipal nutrient loading to the Bow River (Alberta, Canada). Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 59:987-1001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f02-071
Stammler KL, Taylor WD, Mohamed MN, 2017. Long-term decline in stream total phosphorus concentrations: A pervasive pattern in all watershed types in Ontario. J. Great Lakes Res. 43:930-937. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jglr.2017.07.005
Stević F, Čerba D, Čakalić IT, Pfeiffer TŽ, Vidaković J, Mihaljević M, 2013. Interrelations between Dreissena polymorpha colonization and autotrophic periphyton development - A field study in a temperate floodplain lake. Fundam. Appl. Limnol. 183:107-119. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1127/1863-9135/2013/0434
Statistics Canada, 1996. Census of Population. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 93F0032XDB96018.
Statistics Canada, 2017. Ottawa, CV [Census subdivision], Ontario and Canada [Country] (table). Census Profile. 2016 Census. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 98-316-X2016001.
Strayer DL, Caraco NF, Cole JJ, Findlay S, Pace ML, 1999. Transformation of freshwater ecosystems by bivalves: A case study of zebra mussels in the Hudson River. Bioscience 49:19–27. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/1313490
UNESCO [Internet], 2007. Rideau Canal. Available from: https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1221
Vadeboncoeur Y, Power ME, 2017. Attached Algae: The Cryptic Base of Inverted Trophic Pyramids in Freshwaters. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Evol. Syst. 48:255–279. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-ecolsys-121415-032340
Vidal M, Hamilton PB, Pick FR, 2004. Zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) veliger larvae: Distribution and relationship to phytoplankton biomass and composition in the Rideau River, Ontario, Canada. Arch. Hydrobiol. 161:113–131. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1127/0003-9136/2004/0161-0113
Webb DJ, Burnison BK, Trimbee AM, Prepas EE, 1992. Comparison of chlorophyll-a extractions with ethanol and dimethyl sulfoxide/acetone, and a concern about spectrophotometric phaeopigment correction. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 49:2331-2336. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/f92-256
Wickham H, 2016. ggplot2: Elegant Graphics for Data Analysis. Springer, New York. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-24277-4
Wintermans JFGM, Mots A De, 1965. Spectrophotometric characteristics of chlorophylls a and b and their phenophytins in ethanol. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 109:448-453. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/0926-6585(65)90170-6

Edited by

Mariano Bresciani, CNR-IREA Milan, Italy

How to Cite

Trottier, Lindsay, John Chételat, Chantal Vis, Paul B. Hamilton, Frances R. Pick, and Jesse C. Vermaire. 2022. “Water Chemistry and Periphyton Biomass in the Rideau River: Have Conditions Changed After 24 Years?”. Journal of Limnology 81 (1). https://doi.org/10.4081/jlimnol.2022.2065.