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Using the benthic macroinvertebrates as indicators of the water quality in the “Cachoeira do Paraíso” waterfall (Itinguçu State Park, Peruíbe, SP, Brazil)




mosaic of Jureia-Itatins, environmental quality, macrofauna, coastal creeks


Rivers protection is fundamental for the socioecological systems, and the benthic macroinvertebrates communities can be used to assess the quality of river waters. This study aimed to assess the water quality at Cachoeira do Paraíso waterfall, Peruíbe, SP, based on the benthic macrofauna. Sampling took place at 3 sampling sites, under different levels of anthropic influence. Water physical-chemical and sedimentological parameters were evaluated, as well as macrobenthic organisms. Samplings were done by kick sampling technique. The organisms were identified at the lowest possible taxonomic level and points were attributed to each group according to their respective sensitivity and tolerance to pollutants. Then, a biological index was calculated to indicate the water quality. Ecological indices were calculated and compared using ANOVA. The water physical-chemical parameters showed to be within the legal standards. 13 taxonomic groups of benthic macroinvertebrates were identified, with the Shannon diversity indices indicating similar taxonomic diversity. The score given to each taxa generated biological indices for each sample, ranging from regular to excellent. Diptera (with head) I was the most representative taxon, and sensitive taxonomic groups, were found in all the sampling sites, suggesting a good quality of the water body during the period of study.


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Biological Sciences