Assessment of Water Quality Parameters in Mangrove Ecosystems Along Kerala Coast: A Statistical Approach

Document Type: Original Research Paper

Authors

Department of Chemical Oceanography, School of Marine Sciences, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Kochi, Kerala, India

Abstract

Water samples were collected from five selected mangrove ecosystems along Kerala coast, North of Cochin, on seasonal basis and analysed for various hydrographic parameters. To explain spatiotemporal
variations and the processes controlling their distribution, ANOVA (two factor without replication),
correlation and principal component analysis were carried out. Concentration of total nitrogen varied from
10.26 to 188.38 μM and total phosphorous from 1.53 to 22.88 μM, with comparatively higher concentration
in monsoon season which could be attributed by land run off. Chlorophyll pigments recorded significant
seasonal variation ranging from ND to 40.86 μg/L (chlorophyll a), ND to 6.00 μg/L (Chlorophyll b) and ND
to 13.80 μg/L (Chlorophyll c). Both monsoon and post monsoon seasons recorded higher concentration of
pheophytin compared to Chlorophyll a and the maximum concentration of chlorophyll was observed during
pre monsoon. Station 2 (Pappinissery) exhibited elevated concentration of nutrients (especially NH4
+) and lower DO content which pointed towards the reducing environment by anthropogenic stress. Factor analysis revealed six components which explained 92.77% of the total variance. It also described the processes like diagenesis, sediment remineralisation, anthropogenic activities, tidal and river influx which make the ecosystem highly complex.

Keywords