Response of the rotifer community to human-induced changes in the trophic state of a reservoir

Seong-Ki Kim, Jeong-Cheol Kim, Gea-Jae Joo, Jong-Yun Choi

Paper category: Original research paper
Corresponding author: Jong-Yun Choi (
DOI: 10.1515/ohs-2020-0029
Received: 29/04/2020
Accepted: 23/06/2020
Full text: here

Citation: Kim, S., Kim, J., Joo, G., & Choi, J. (2020). Response of the rotifer community to human-induced changes in the trophic state of a reservoir, Oceanological and Hydrobiological Studies, 49(4), 329-344. doi:


Human disturbance and nutrient runoff lead to water pollution, particularly in downstream waters and reservoirs. We hypothesized that increased human activity in summer would affect the trophic state of downstream reservoirs, affecting the interannual species composition of rotifers. We used long-term data for the Unmun Reservoir in South Korea (2009–2015), which is increasingly affected by human activity. The interannual variation of nitrogen and phosphorus levels was higher in summer and autumn, resulting in eutrophication. This led to a change in species composition of rotifers. Anuraeopsis fissa, Brachionus calyciflorus and Trichocerca gracilis were abundant in the most eutrophic state, while high densities of Ascomorpha ovalis and Ploesoma hudsoni were observed when nutrient concentrations were lower. The trophic state changes in the Unmun Reservoir were largely attributed to summer human activity in tributary streams. Our study location is typical of the stream network in South Korea and we assume that similar trophic state changes in reservoirs will be common. Changes in the density and species diversity of rotifers due to eutrophication indicate the need for active management and conservation, including the restriction of human activity around streams.

This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (grant No. NRF-2012-R1A6A3A04040793).


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