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The effect of a dam construction on subtidal nematode communities in the Ba Lai Estuary, Vietnam
Nguyen, Y.T.M.; Vanreusel, A.; Lins, L.; Tran, T.T.; Bezerra, T.N.; Quang, N.X. (2020). The effect of a dam construction on subtidal nematode communities in the Ba Lai Estuary, Vietnam. Diversity 12(4): 137.
In: Diversity. MDPI: Basel. ISSN 1424-2818; e-ISSN 1424-2818
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    dam impact; estuary; heavy metals; free-living nematodes; density; diversity

Authors  Top 
  • Nguyen, Y.T.M.
  • Vanreusel, A., more
  • Lins, L., more
  • Tran, T.T.
  • Bezerra, T.N., more
  • Quang, N.X.

    Nematode communities and relevant environmental variables were investigated to assess how the presence of a dam affects the Ba Lai estuary benthic ecosystem, in comparison to the adjacent dam-free estuary Ham Luong. Both estuaries are part of the Mekong delta system in Vietnam. This study has shown that the dam’s construction had an effect on the biochemical components of the Ba Lai estuary, as observed by the local increase in total suspended solids and heavy metal concentrations (Hg and Pb) and by a significant oxygen depletion compared to the natural river of Ham Luong. The nematode communities were also different between the two estuaries in terms of density, genus richness, Shannon–Wiener diversity, and dominant genera. The Ba Lai estuary exhibited lower nematode densities but a higher diversity, while the genus composition only slightly differed between estuaries. The results indicate that the present nematode communities may be well adapted to the natural organic load, to the heavy metal accumulation and to the oxygen stress in both estuaries, but the dam presence may potentially continue to drive the Ba Lai’s ecosystem to its tipping point.

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