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Brazilian Journal of Biology

versión impresa ISSN 1519-6984versión On-line ISSN 1678-4375


MACHADO, V. S.; VOLKMER-RIBEIRO, C.  y  IANNUZZI, R.. Investigation of freshwater sponges spicules deposits in a karstic lake in Brazil. Braz. J. Biol. [online]. 2016, vol.76, n.1, pp.36-44.  Epub 22-Ene-2016. ISSN 1519-6984.

The environmental conditions which contributed to the formation of the notorious quaternary deposits of freshwater sponge spicules in karstic lentic environments in Brazil have been subject of some speculation. No investigation has yet been conducted to test whether these deposits currently originate in karstic lakes. To provide for such an investigation, Serra Negra Lake, which is formed on an ultramafic-alkaline-carbonatite dome at central western Brazil, close to the area of occurrence of the paleo-deposits was selected for the study. Bottom sediments were sampled at 10 stations across the lake, and water was sampled at five of the stations, in June/2011 (rainy season) and October/2011 (dry season). Analysis of granulometry, organic matter and presence of spicules were carried out in the sediments. Lake water was analysed for the main physical and chemical characteristics. Deposit of spicules was restricted to the northern area of the lake, which is rich in macrophyte. The taxonomic analysis of the spicules indicated the contribution of five sponge species, Dosilia pydanieli, Metania spinata, Radiospongilla amazonensis, Trochospongilla variabilis and Heterorotula fistula, which formed large deposits in neighbouring areas. The high silica concentration, derived from the dome volcanic rocks, constant water level and available substrate are credited for the continuous production of sponges and spicules, confirmed by the rare presence of gemmoscleres. The lake is classed as a minerotrophic fen type of bog with a heavy contribution from the surrounding creeks. Lake sediments are fine with high levels of organic matter and peat, which contributed to the trapping of spicules in the sediments.

Palabras clave : continental sponges spicules; bottom sediments; bogs; Cerrado Biome.

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