The Effect of Climatic Shifts on Biodiversity of Phytocenosis: Lake Arakhley (Eastern Siberia, Russia)
Lake Arakhley is located within the Lake Baikal basin in Eastern Siberia, Russia. The area is characterized by continental subarctic climate with considerate diurnal temperature range, long cold dry winters and short hot summers with more precipitation occurring during the latter half of the summer. Climatic shifts in high water years and low water years result in morphometric changes in the lake and in the chemical and physical parameters of the ecosystem. During low water years, concentrations of ammonium nitrogen and nitrite nitrogen are decreased, whereas nitrate concentration increases. High water years feature average concentrations of ammonium ions 1.5–2 times higher than the values of recent dry years.
Redundancy analysis (RDA) of abiotic factors and biotic community indicated that the community structure shows the greatest correlation with physical and chemical parameters of water and biogenic elements (nitrites, ammonium, phosphates) along the first axis, and with the lake depth and transparency along the second axis.
Changes in abiotic factors induce functioning and formation of characteristic communities of the primary producers in the trophic structure of the ecosystem. During low water years, with increased level of autochthonous organic matter, Lindavia comta dominance is observed, while during high water years, with increased allochthonous organic matter Asterionella formosa appeared as dominant. Currently, during low water years, the hydrophytes community is monodominant and composed of Ceratophyllum demersum. Meanwhile, such species indicating eutrophic conditions as Myriophyllum sibiricum, Potamogeton pectinatus are found in the lake vegetation.
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