Ocean Science Journal

, Volume 53, Issue 4, pp 707–718 | Cite as

Seasonal Shift in Community Structure of Periphytic Ciliates in Estuarine Waters in the Northern Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh

  • Mamun Abdullah Al
  • Rahman Muhammed Forruq
  • Aysha Akhtar
  • Md. Wahidul Alam
  • Mohammad Nurul Azim Sikder
  • Alan Warren
  • Henglong XuEmail author


To investigate the seasonal heterogeneity of the periphytic ciliate communities, a 1-year baseline survey was conducted in the Karnaphuli River estuary, northern Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh. A total of 54 ciliate species were recorded, including seven common and 14 dominant species. Maximum species number was in autumn whereas maximum abundance was in winter; the minimum for both occurred in summer. Multivariate analyses, i.e., canonical analysis of principal coordinates (CAP) and principal co-ordinates analysis (PCoA), revealed a clear seasonal heterogeneity of community structure and environmental variables. Multivariate correlation analysis (RELATE) demonstrated that the community structure of the periphytic ciliate communities was significantly correlated with environmental variables, and best matching analysis (BIOENV) indicated that heterogeneity of community patterns was mainly driven by water temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids and nutrients. Species richness and diversity peaked in autumn whereas species evenness peaked in summer. These results suggest that environmental conditions shape periphytic ciliate community structure, which is a potentially useful bio-indicator of estuarine water quality.


community structure estuarine habitats Northern Bay of Bengal periphytic ciliates seasonal heterogeneity 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Abdullah Al M, Gao Y, Xu G, Wang Z, Xu H (2017) Variations in the community structure of biofilm-dwelling protozoa at different depths in coastal waters of the Yellow Sea, northern China. J Mar Biol Assoc UK. doi:10.1017/S0025315417001680 (in press)Google Scholar
  2. Agamaliev FG (1974) Ciliates of the solid surface overgrowth of the Caspian Sea. Acta Protozool 13:53–83Google Scholar
  3. Anderson MJ, Gorley RN, Clark KR (2008) PERMANOVA+ for PRIMER guide to software and statistical methods. PRIMER-E Ltd, PlymouthGoogle Scholar
  4. APHA (1992) Standard methods for examination of water and waste water. 18th edition. American Public Health Association, Washington DCGoogle Scholar
  5. Clarke RK, Gorley RN (2015) PRIMER 7; user manual/tutorial. PRIMER-E Ltd, PlymouthGoogle Scholar
  6. Corliss JO (2002) Biodiversity and biocomplexity of the protists and an overview of their significant roles in maintenance of our biosphere. Acta Protozool 41:199–219Google Scholar
  7. Gong J, Song W, Warren A (2005) Periphytic ciliate colonization: annual cycle and responses to environmental conditions. Aquat Microb Ecol 39:159–170CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Hossain MM, Kibria G, Nugegoda D, Lau TC, Wu R (2015) A training manual for assessing pollution (trace/heavy metals) in rivers, estuaries and coastal waters using innovative “Artificial Mussel (AM) technology”-Bangladesh model. Research collaboration between scientist of the IMSF, University of Chittagong, Bangladesh, RMIT University, Australia, The City University of Hong Kong and the University of Hong Kong, 22 pGoogle Scholar
  9. Islam MR, Das NG, Barua P, Hossain MB, Venkatramanan S, Chung SY (2017) Environmental assessment of water and soil contamination in Rajakhali Canal of Karnaphuli River (Bangladesh) impacted by anthropogenic influences: a preliminary case study. Appl Water Sci 7:997–1010CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Ismael AA, Dorgham MM (2003) Ecological indices as a tool for assessing pollution in EI-Dekaila Harbour (Alexandria, Egypt). Oceanologia 45:121–131Google Scholar
  11. Jiang Y, Xu H, Hu X, Zhu M, Al-Rasheid KAS, Warren A (2011) An approach to analyzing spatial patterns of planktonic ciliate communities for monitoring water quality in Jiaozhou Bay, northern China. Mar Pollut Bull 62:227–235CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kathol M, Norf H, Arndt H, Weitere M (2009) Effects of temperature increase on the grazing of planktonic bacteria by biofilm-dwelling consumers. Aquat Microb Ecol 55:65–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kchaou N, Elloumi J, Drira Z, Hamza A, Ayadi H, Bouain A, Aleya L (2009) Distribution of ciliates in relation to environmental factors along the coastline of the Gulf of Gabes, Tunisia. Estuar Coast Shelf S 83:414–424CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Magurran AE (1991) Ecological diversity and its measurements. Chapman and Hall, London, 179 pGoogle Scholar
  15. Morin S, Duong TT, Dabrin A, Coynel A, Herlory O, Baudrimont M, Delmas F, Durrieu G, Schäfer J, Winterton P, Blanc G, Coste M (2008) Long-term survey of heavy-metal pollution, biofilm contamination and diatom community structure in the Riou Mort watershed South-West France. Environ Pollut 151:532–542CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Norf H, Arndt H, Weitere M (2007) Impact of local temperature increase on the early development of biofilm-associated ciliate communities. Oecologia 151:341–350CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Payne RJ (2013) Seven reasons why protists make good bioindicators. Acta Protozool 52:105–113Google Scholar
  18. Persoone G (1968) Ecologie des infusoires dans les salissures de substrates immerges dans up port de mer, I. Le film primaire et le recouvrement primaire. Protistologica 45:64–76Google Scholar
  19. Song W, Warren A, Hu X (2009) Free-living ciliates in the Bohai and Yellow Seas, China. Science Press, Beijing, 518 pGoogle Scholar
  20. Wang Q, Xu H (2015) Colonization dynamics in trophic-functional patterns of bioflim-dwelling ciliates using two methods in coastal waters. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 95(4):681–689CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Wang Z, Xu G, Zhao Lu, Gao Y, Mamun AA, Xu H (2017) A new method for evaluating defense of microalgae against protozoan grazing. Ecol Indic 77:261–266CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Xu G, Xu H (2016) An approach to analyzing environmental divers to spatial variations in annual distribution of periphytic protozoa in coastal ecosystems. Mar Pollut Bull 104:107–112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Xu G, Xu Y, Xu H (2016) Insights into discriminating water quality status using new biodiversity measures based on a trait hierarchy of body-size units. Ecol Indic 60:980–986CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Xu H, Min GS, Choi JK, Jung JH, Park MH (2009a) Approach to analyses of periphytic ciliate colonization for monitoring water quality using a modified artificial substrate in Korean coastal waters. Mar Pollut Bull 58:1278–1285CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Xu H, Min GS, Choi JK, Kim SJ, Jung JH, Lim BJ (2009b) An approach to analyses of periphytic ciliate communities for monitoring water quality using a modified artificial substrate in Korean coastal waters. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 89:669–679CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Xu H, Zhang W, Jiang Y, Yang EJ (2014) Use of biofilm-dwelling ciliate communities to determine environmental quality status of coastal water. Sci Total Environ 470–471:511–518CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Xu H, Zhang W, Jiang Y, Zhu M, Al-Rasheid KAS, Warren A, Song W (2011) An approach to determining sampling effort for analyzing biofilm-dwelling ciliate colonization using an artificial substratum in coastal waters. Biofouling 27:357–366CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Xu K, Choi JK, Yang EJ, Lee KC, Lei Y (2002) Biomonitoring of coastal pollution status using protozoan communities with a modified PFU method. Mar Pollut Bull 44:877–886CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Yang Z, Xu Y, Xu G, Xu H (2016) Temporal variation in taxonomic distinctness of biofilm-associated diatoms within the colonization process in coastal ecosystems. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 96(5): 1119–1125CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Zhang W, Xu H (2015) Seasonal shift in community pattern of periphytic ciliates and its environmental drivers in coastal waters of the Yellow Sea, northern China. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 95(2):277–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Zhang W, Xu H, Jiang Y, Zhu M, Al-Rasheid KAS (2012) Influence of enumeration time periods on analyzing colonization features and taxonomic relatedness of periphytic ciliate communities using an artificial substratum for marine bioassessment. Environ Sci Pollut R 19:3619–3627CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Zhong X, Xu G, Xu H (2017) Use of multiple functional traits of protozoa for bioassessment of marine pollution. Mar Pollut Bull 119(2):33–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Zhong X, Xu G, Wang Y, Xu H (2014) An approach to determination of functional species pool for community research. Ecol Indic 46:78–83CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Korea Institute of Ocean Science & Technology (KIOST) and the Korean Society of Oceanography (KSO) and Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mamun Abdullah Al
    • 1
    • 2
  • Rahman Muhammed Forruq
    • 2
    • 3
  • Aysha Akhtar
    • 2
  • Md. Wahidul Alam
    • 2
  • Mohammad Nurul Azim Sikder
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alan Warren
    • 4
  • Henglong Xu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Laboratory of Microbial EcologyOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina
  2. 2.Faculty of Marine Sciences and FisheriesUniversity of ChittagongChittagongBangladesh
  3. 3.College of FisheriesOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina
  4. 4.Department of Life SciencesNatural History MuseumLondonUK

Personalised recommendations