ORIGINAL RESEARCH
Vertical-Flow Constructed Wetlands Applied in a Recirculating Aquaculture System for Channel Catfish Culture: Effects on Water Quality and Zooplankton
Shi-yang Zhang1,2,3, Qiao-hong Zhou1, Dong Xu1, Feng He1, Shui-ping Cheng1, Wei Liang1, Cheng Du1,2, Zhen-bin Wu1
 
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1Laboratory of Environmental Pollution and Bioremediation, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography,
Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi, China
2Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, PR China
3Yangtze River Fisheries Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences, Jingzhou 434000, PR China
 
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2010;19(5):1063–1070
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ABSTRACT
In recent decades, considerable attention has been paid to the serious water pollution caused by the fastgrowing aquaculture industry. On the other side, water quality determines to a great extent the success or failure of an aquaculture operation. So highlighted is the need for sustainable development of aquaculture. In the present work, we established a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) by vertical-flow constructed wetlands (CWs) for channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) culture, and assessed its effects on water quality improvement. The results indicated that the CWs applied in the RAS showed relatively higher removal efficiency for particulate matter (more than 55%) and lower, uneven removal efficiency for nutrients and organic matter (from -34.1% to 48.7%). Paired t-tests showed that only parameters of NH4 +-N, TN, COD, BOD5, TSS, and Chl-a were significantly (p<0.05) lowered after wetland treatment. Despite this, nutrients (but NH4 +-N, NO2--N, and NO3--N), organic matter, and suspended solids (including plankton) in the recirculating ponds were significantly lowered compared to the control, indicating a decline in trophic status. Multivariate analyses revealed strong relationships between zooplankton community structure and the measured environment in the culture ponds. Cyanobacterial blooms that occurred heavily in the control were strongly restrained in the recirculating ponds. This led to water quality that was suitable for fish culture. Hereby, conclusions could be reached that the recirlulating treatment by the CWs achieved its aim of sustaining or extending water quality improvement in the RAS.
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ISSN:1230-1485