Influence of Catchment Land cover dynamics on the physical, chemical and biological integrity of wetlands
T.V. Ramachandra1,2,3,*            D.S. Meera1            B. Alakananda1
1Energy & Wetlands Research Group, Centre for Ecological Sciences [CES], 2Centre for Sustainable Technologies (astra), 3Centre for infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and Urban Planning [CiSTUP], Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore – 560012, India.
*Corresponding author:


Land use and land cover (LULC) changes in the wetland catchments are the direct and indirect consequence of human actions to secure essential resources. These changes encompass the greatest environmental concerns of human populations today, including loss of biodiversity, pollution of water and soil, and changes in the climate.  Monitoring and mitigating the negative consequences of LULC while sustaining the production of essential resources has therefore become a major priority today. This communication investigates the effect of land-cover and water quality on distribution of diatoms in selected wetlands of Bangalore. In this respect, water quality (chemical and biological) was assessed along with LULC of respective wetland catchments.  Spatial analysis has been done using remote sensing data and geographic information system (GIS). Diatoms, the major primary producers of aquatic ecosystem, respond quickly to environmental perturbations aid as bioindicators. The results showed gradients in physical, chemical and biological parameters across wetlands with different LULC. The diatom community results, when compared to chemical analyses, proved useful in providing an indication of the quality of waters. Pollution tolerant taxa such as Nitzschia palea dominated at sites with heavy inflow of sewage while, Cymbella sp. and Gomphonema sp. present abundantly at less pollution sites. Across the land-cover types, wetlands catchment comprising more of built-up area reflected higher nutrient and ionic levels, whereas wetlands with high vegetation cover showed oligotrophic water quality conditions. Species belonging to the genera Gomphonema, Cyclotella, Nitzschia and Achnanthidium expressed clear ecological preferences.  This study emphasizes the need for conservation efforts at catchment level for conservation of wetlands biota.

Keywords: Land use land cover (LULC), landscape, landscape dynamics, wetlands.  Diatoms, Water quality

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Citation : Ramachandra T.V, Meera D.S. and Alakananda B., 2013. Influence of Catchment Land Cover Dynamics on the Physical, Chemical and Biological Integrity of Wetlands, Environment & We -International Journal of Science & Technology - (EWIJST), 8(1): 37-54.
* Corresponding Author :
Dr. T.V. Ramachandra
Energy & Wetlands Research Group, Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore – 560 012, India.
Tel : +91-80-2293 3099/2293 3503-extn 107,      Fax : 91-80-23601428 / 23600085 / 23600683 [CES-TVR]
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