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International Journal of Botany

Year: 2011  |  Volume: 7  |  Issue: 2  |  Page No.: 170 - 176

Metal Content in Water and in Green Filamentous Algae Microspora quadrata Hazen from Coal Mine Impacted Streams of Jaintia Hills District, Meghalaya, India

M. Das and P. Ramanujam


Microspora quadrata Hazen, a green filamentous alga has been found to grow luxuriantly throughout the year, in the streams affected by Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) caused by unscientific coal mining in Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya. The AMD effluents contain metals which are known to be toxic to the aquatic organisms. Filamentous green algae are capable of accumulating and thereby help in removing metals from the affected water bodies. The present study was undertaken to find the seasonal variations in the metal content in the AMD impacted streams and the efficiency of Microspora quadrata to remove the toxic metals by accumulation of the metals in its biomass. Water and filamentous algal mats were collected seasonally from streams located in active mining, coal storage and abandoned areas and were analyzed for iron, lead, zinc and manganese by atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Significant seasonal changes in concentrations of toxic metals were observed in water and in Microspora quadrata Hazen. Accumulation of metals like iron and lead were higher in algal mat compared to water medium in all seasons. Maximum accumulation of iron was observed in autumn whereas lead and manganese were more in spring. Zinc content in water was significantly higher than that of algal mat indicating very low rate of absorption or adsorption. Thus, from the present study Microspora quadrata could be suggested as a useful plant material to remove toxic metals like iron lead and manganese from the AMD streams of the region.

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