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Birds of the sewage stabilization ponds at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria

AI Akinpelu


A qualitative study of aquatic macroinvertebrates and birds associated with sewage stabilization ponds was carried out on the campus of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. Thirteen macroinvertebrate species were recorded out of which Ephemeroptera, Chironomus larvae, mosquito larvae and pupae and Notonecta sp. accounted for 95.4% of the total number of macroinvertebrates. All were found within the littoral region except Chironomus which occurred in both littoral and benthic samples. They serve as food, either directly or through the cyprinodont fish and tadpoles found in the receiving stream, for the twenty-nine bird species belonging to sixteen families that were identified. Ten of these were palaearctic visitors and African migrants. The dry season comparatively favoured increased number of bird species as opposed to lower numbers of aquatic macroarthropods recorded during the same period. The absence of predators on birds, little disturbance to the surrounding habitat and the traditional aversion man has for human sewage coupled with the offensive odour has created a relatively safe haven for the birds in and around the sewage stabilization ponds.