Limnological conditions at La Plata reservoir in Puerto Rico: 2008 to 2009


Water quality--Puerto Rico--La Plata reservoir
Limnology--Puerto Rico--La Plata reservoir

How to Cite

Martínez-Rodríguez, G. A., & Sotomayor-Ramírez, D. (2012). Limnological conditions at La Plata reservoir in Puerto Rico: 2008 to 2009. The Journal of Agriculture of the University of Puerto Rico, 96(1-2).


Water column profiles of important limnological indicators (temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, reduction potential, nutrients) were collected at the center section of La Plata reservoir in north-central Puerto Rico during 2008 and 2009. Temperatures at the surface ranged from values close to 25° C during the hemisphere winter months (December-February) to approximately 30° C during summer (June-August). Total nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations at the epilimnion (≤ 3-m depth) averaged 1.06 mg/L and 50 µg/L, respectively. Chlorophyll a values averaged 32.4 µg/L, which altogether with its nutrient status, would place this reservoir within the eutrophic-hypereutrophic categories. The annual average volume-weighed dissolved oxygen concentration for the reservoir was 3.02 mg/L, a reflection of the delicate ecological condition of this reservoir. The reservoir remains stratified during a large portion of the year (≥ eight months), inducing prevailing anoxic conditions at the hypolimnion. However, mixing because of incoming flow associated with intense rain events can be common. As a result, the mixing regime of this reservoir is best classified as discontinuous warm polymictic. Runoff associated with intense rainfall is probably the major contributor of hypolimnion dissolved oxygen and nutrient recharge at this reservoir. The distribution of iron (Fe) and manganese (Mn) is strongly influenced by the redox status of the system. Solid phases containing these metals exert a dominant role in the cycling of phosphate in the system.


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