, Volume 546, Issue 1, pp 559–568 | Cite as

Interaction Among Copper Toxicity, Temperature and Salinity on the Population Dynamics of Brachionus Rotundiformis (Rotifera)

  • José Luis Gama-Flores
  • S.S.S. Sarma
  • S. Nandini


Heavy metals may interact with ecological factors such as temperature, food level and salinity, causing both mortality and reduced reproduction in organisms. Among different heavy metals, copper compounds are commonly used for eliminating algal blooms in aquaculture tanks. At certain concentrations, copper is toxic to rotifers. In the present work, we evaluated the combined effects of salt concentrations (2.5 and 5.0 g l−1 NaCl), copper levels (0, 0.03125, 0.0625, 0.125 and 0.25 mg l−1 as CuCl2) and two temperatures (20 and 25 °C) on the population growth of B. rotundiformis using Chlorella as the algal food (at 0.5 × 106 cells ml−1 for every 24 h). Regardless of salinity and temperature, copper at concentrations as low as 0.03 mg l−1 had an adverse effect on the population growth of rotifers and above 0.125 mg l−1, the populations did not grow. The effect of the toxicant on B. rotundiformis was more severe at 25° than at 20 °C at lower salinity. In general, we observed peak densities of rotifers around day 12 at 20 °C but 6–8 days earlier at 25 °C. Peak population densities of B. rotundiformis in the controls at the salinity of 2.5 g l−1 ranged from 90 to 180 ind. ml−1, depending on temperature; at a salinity of 5.0 g l−1, these were lower. The population growth rates, r, in our study varied from +0.31 to –0.12 depending on the test conditions. There was a significant impact of temperature, salinity and toxicity level on the population growth rate of B. rotundiformis. Our results suggested that even narrow changes in salinity could negatively influence the toxicity of heavy metal on the population growth rates of B. rotundiformis.


rotifers temperature salinity copper toxicity 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Luis Gama-Flores
    • 1
    • 2
  • S.S.S. Sarma
    • 2
  • S. Nandini
    • 3
  1. 1.Doctoral ProgrammeAutonomous Metropolitan UniversityMexico CityMexico
  2. 2.Laboratory of Aquatic Zoology, Division of Research and Postgraduate StudiesNational Autonomous University of MexicoTlalnepantlaMexico
  3. 3.UIICSE, Division of Research and Postgraduate StudiesNational Autonomous University of MexicoTlalnepantlaMexico

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