Macrophyte abundance and water quality status of three impacted inlet streams along Ikpa River Basin, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria
Assessment of macrophyte abundance and water quality of three impacted inlet streams along Ikpa River Basin were investigated. A 5m x 5m quadrat through systematic sampling was used to sample the vegetation for density and frequency of species. Sediment and water samples were collected and analyzed using standard methods. From the results obtained, a total of 23 macrophyte species from 17 families were encountered. Stream 1 (Ntak Inyang 1) had 7 species, stream 2 (Ntak Inyang 2) had 13 species while stream 3 (Afaha Oku) had 14 species. Streams 3 and 1 were the most diverse and least diverse in terms of species composition, respectively. Sediment characteristics of the streams revealed that the textural class followed this order; sand>clay>silt while cation contents followed this order; Ca>Mg>Na. Soil pH was slightly acidic with low organic carbon, total nitrogen and phosphorus contents. Water quality assessment revealed a good water quality for streams 1 and 2 and poor water quality for stream 3. These results are discussed in line with anthropogeneity, species adaptation and other factors impacting the streams and will serve as baseline information for future management of these and other lotic ecosystems.
Keywords: Macrophyte abundance, density, frequency, water quality, anthropogenic perturbations, inlet streams, Ikpa River Basin, diversity indices