Evaluation of water quality of an urban stream in southeastern Brazil using Chironomidae larvae (Insecta: Diptera)


Neotropical Entomology




In order to estimate the water quality of São Pedro stream, through distribution and composition of Chironomidae larvae present in the sediment four sampling sites were selected. In each sampling site, three sediment samples were collected within a period of twelve months using the Petersen (0.0189 m²) and the van Veen (0.0518 m²) dredges. Samples were washed through a sieve with a 0.21 mm mesh and the collected organisms were sorted in transparent trays, with a light shine being reflected into the tray. The sites located in the greatest urban mesh showed high densities of the genus Chironomus and lower values for diversity, uniformity and taxa richness, in relation to sites located in a less urbanized area. A significant difference in density of Chironomidae larvae (p = 0.02; H = 5.89) was observed between the sites without domestic sewage effluents (site I) and those with the input of the effluents (sites II, III and IV). The Chironomidae larvae composition and the physical and chemical parameters were effective as indicators of the environmental alterations in São Pedro stream.

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