Water quality of two glacial alpine Italian lakes.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to characterize, in a period of one year, two glacial lakes, Alice and Meugliano, located in an alpine reservoir on the basis of physical and chemical features. The two lakes show two periods of mixing: one in the spring and one in the autumn, so can be classified as dimictic lakes. They are characterized by pH, alkalinity, low conductivity and and quite dilute ionic concentrations. With regard to nutrients, most nitrogen occurred in the nitric form in the superficial layers. During the period of thermal stratification, in the anoxic layer NO3- decreases and NH4+ increases, confirming the activity of the anaerobic denitrificant bacteria. Total and soluble phosphorus levels show homogeneity during the cold period at different depths, while with stratification concentrations increase in the hypolimnium and metalimnium. In both lakes there is an inverse correlation between transparency and chlorophyll a. To evaluate the trophic state the conventional criteria of Nurnberg 2 and four lake trophic indices (TSIs) are used. Both evaluations suggest that the two lakes are eutrophic, with worse conditions in Alice. Deviations of the trophic states, based on the relation between TSIs, indicate that factors other than phosphorous limit the algal biomass, and that non-algal particles influence light attenuation

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