Zooplankton Composition and Diversity in Paoay Lake, Luzon Is., Philippines


Ma. Riyel Y. Aquino1, Carmela D. Cho1, May Ann S. Cruz1
Ma. Angelica G. Saguiguit1, and Rey Donne S. Papa1,2*

1Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science and
2Research Center for the Natural Sciences, University of Santo Tomas
España, Blvd., Manila, Philippines

*corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it./ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



A study on zooplankton species composition and diversity of Paoay Lake in Luzon Is., Philippines was conducted to update the previous zooplankton species lists in the area and provide new insights into its ecology. Samples were collected monthly from April to September 2006. Twenty-seven species were found in Paoay Lake. Of these, 45% belong to Rotifera, 29% to Cladocera, and 26% to Copepoda. Five (2 Copepoda and 3 Rotifera) species that have been reported to be rare in previous studies were frequently encountered in all sampling sites such as Paracyclops fimbriatus, Tropocyclops prasinus, Conochiloides dossuarius, Keratella cochlearis, and Trichocerca capucina. Nineteen species are new records for Paoay Lake. The rotifer Keratella tropica was noted to be the most abundant among all zooplankton species observed. Species diversity and richness was lowest during April and May, the same time when high densities of K. tropica was observed, and was higher during the succeeding months due to the absence of any dominant species.



Paoay Lake (Latitude: 18° 7' 16 N, Longitude: 120° 32' 18 E) is located in the town of Paoay in the province of Ilocos Norte in the northern Philippine island of Luzon. It is bounded by the towns of Suba in the north, Nanguyudan in the northeast, Pasil in the east, Sungadan in the south and Nagbacalan in the north (Figure 1). It is the only lake in the Ilocos Norte province (Guerrero 2001). The lake is devoid of tributaries; its source of water comes from ground water flow and surface run-off during rainy seasons from the surrounding hills. Paoay Lake is one of the most scenic and historical places in the region. Aside from this, small-scale aquaculture is being developed in some parts of the lake as livelihood of the local townsfolk residing in the area. To avoid potential misuse of the resources of the lake, it has been declared as a protected area by the national government, thus enabling it to monitor and control the amount of human activity in the lake.





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