Articles

 

Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana

Volumen 69, núm. 2, 2017, p. 313 ‒ 370

Basic limnology of 30 continental waterbodies of the Transmexican Volcanic Belt across climatic and environmental gradients

Itzel Sigala, Margarita Caballero, Alexander Correa-Metrio, Socorro Lozano-García, Gabriela Vázquez, Liseth Pérez, Edyta Zawisza

Itzel Sigala
Posgrado en Ciencias Biológicas, Instituto de Geología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad Universitaria, 04510, Ciudad de México, México.

Margarita Caballero
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Instituto de Geofísica, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad Universitaria, 04510, Ciudad de México, México.

Alexander Correa-Metrio
Socorro Lozano-García
Liseth Pérez
Instituto de Geología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad Universitaria, 04510, Ciudad de México, México.

Gabriela Vázquez
Instituto de Ecología, A.C. Carretera antigua a Coatepec 351, El Haya, Xalapa 91070, Veracruz, México.

Edyta Zawisza
Institute of Geological Sciences, Polish Academy of Sciences, Research Centre in Warsaw Twarda 51/55, PL00818 Warsaw, Poland.

 

Abstract

Thirty waterbodies on the Transmexican Volcanic Belt were studied using standardized methods, covering an altitudinal gradient from 737 to 4283 masl and different climatic types. Waterbodies of tree different origins were included: tectonic (4), volcanic (11 craters or maars and 7 volcanic dams) and reservoirs (8). Reservoirs and tectonic lakes were mostly shallow (< 6 m) while volcanic lakes were the deepest (> 25 m). Most were freshwater bodies with alkaline waters (pH > 7.5) dominated by [Ca2+] or [Na+] and [HCO3-]. Subsaline (6) and hyposaline (2) lakes were dominated by [Cl-] - [HCO3-] and [Na+]. In thirteen lakes, nutrient levels could be limiting primary productivity, mostly P, but also N and Si. Half of the lakes (16) were eutrophic or hypertrophic and most of these were also shallow (< 8 m) and correlated with warm, moist conditions. Ninety-seven taxa of aquatic organisms (phytoplankton, and surface sediment diatoms, testate amoebae, cladoceran and ostracodes) were reported, which could potentially be used as bioindicators. Principal component analysis (PCA) showed that temperature and precipitation were the main environmental gradients related to the lakes’ limnological characteristics: colder climates related with lowest TDS (< 100 mg/L); dry climates with subsaline and hyposaline lakes, and warm-moist climates with eutrophic and hypertrophic lakes. Through the Procrustes technique we obtained indications that general geographic variables were important for some of the lakes, whereas the local factors were significant for others. It is through the knowledge of the basic limnology and biodiversity of Mexican lakes that more complex or detailed studies can be proposed leading to a better understanding, management, and conservation of water resources.

Keywords: Hydrochemistry, salinity, trophic state, benthos, plankton.