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Aquat Toxicol. 2000 Mar 1;48(2-3):251-264.

Impact of the fungicide carbendazim in freshwater microcosms. II. Zooplankton, primary producers and final conclusions.

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DLO Winand Staring Centre for Integrated Land, Soil and Water Research, P.O. Box 125, 6700 AC, Wageningen, The Netherlands


Effects of chronic application of the fungicide Derosal(R) (active ingredient carbendazim) were studied in indoor macrophyte-dominated freshwater microcosms. The concentrations (0, 3.3, 33, 100, 330 and 1000 µg/l) were kept at a constant level for 4 weeks. This paper is the second of a series of two; it describes the effects on zooplankton and primary producers and presents an overall discussion. The zooplankton community was negatively affected by the three highest treatment levels (NOEC(community)=33 µg/l). At higher treatment levels Cladocera taxa were completely eliminated, while Copepod numbers were reduced. Rotatoria taxa decreased (Keratella quadrata and Lecane sp.) or increased in abundance (Testudinella parva) at the highest treatment level only. Due to the reduced grazing pressure, the abundance of some phytoplankton taxa and the chlorophyll-a content of the phytoplankton increased at the three highest treatment levels (NOEC(community)=33 µg/l). This effect was not observed for the periphyton, most probably because the reduced grazing pressure was compensated by the increased abundance of some snail species such as Lymnaea stagnalis and Physella acuta. At the end of the experimental period the biomass of the macrophyte Elodea nuttallii was significantly elevated at the two highest treatment levels. It is hypothesised that carbendazim might have caused, directly or indirectly, the removal of pathogene organisms from the macrophyte.

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