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Print version ISSN 0370-6583On-line version ISSN 2175-7860


LOPES, Aline  and  PIEDADE, Maria Teresa Fernandez. Time of exposure and oil dosage affecting biomass production of the Amazonian semi-aquatic grass Echinochloa polystachya. Rodriguésia [online]. 2011, vol.62, n.4, pp.901-907. ISSN 0370-6583.

The effects of Urucu crude oil on growth and biomass production of Echinochloa polystachya were studied experimentally. Young plants contaminated with 5 oil doses (0 to 2.64 l.m-2) were monitored at 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 days after exposure. A significant reduction was observed in leaf humidity and the ratio of live aerial/ total biomass related to the increase in oil dosage. Increased exposition time caused a reduction in the number of leaves, aerial biomass, proportion of live aerial/total biomass, total biomass, and an increase of dead aerial biomass. However, root biomass and leaf length were not affected by exposure to oil. The low tolerance of E. polystachya to Urucu crude oil has lead to the mortality of 90% of the plant population in 20 days at the 2.64 l treatment. The death of young individuals of E. polystachya by relatively low dosages of Urucu oil indicates that, in the case of an oil spill in the Amazon varzea, this species would be severely affected, endangering, consequently, the entire environment.

Keywords : floodplains; aquatic macrophytes.

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