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A multi-species modelling approach to select appropriate submerged macrophyte species for ecological restoration in Gonghu Bay, Lake Taihu, China

Gao, Hailong, Shi, Qianyun, Qian, Xin
Ecological modelling 2017 v.360 pp. 179-188
Myriophyllum spicatum, Vallisneria, chlorophyll, ecological restoration, macrophytes, models, phytomass, China
In this study, we built a submerged macrophyte model (GBAEDM) that could simulate several macrophyte species simultaneously. The model was calibrated and validated using pilot-scale experimental data, with satisfactory results. The coefficient of determination (R2) and root-mean-square error (RMSE) values were 0.86 and 0.03 for TP, 0.71 and 0.38 for TN, 0.93 and 6.78 for Chl a, and 0.99 and 27.61 for submerged macrophyte biomass. The GBAEDM was then used to choose appropriate species and suitable initial plant biomass submerged macrophyte recovery in Gonghu Bay. The appropriate species at 1m depth were Vallisneria spinulosa (1150g/m2), Myriophyllum spicatum (525g/m2), and V. spinulosa–M. spicatum mixed (600g/m2; 3:1) communities. At 2m depth, the appropriate species were M. spicatum (1450g/m2) and V. spinulosa–M. spicatum mixed (1950g/m2; 12:1) communities. Only M. spicatum (1608g/m2) was recommended at 3m depth. Finally, the GBAEDM was used to determine the critical water transparency thresholds for submerged macrophytes in Gonghu Bay. A transparency value of 0.62m at 2m (the WT/H value of 0.31) was determined as the critical underwater light threshold for the recovery of submerged macrophytes in Gonghu Bay.