Zooplankton biodiversity in tropical karst lakes of southeast Mexico, Chiapas




Palabras clave:

Species richness, Copepoda, Cladocera, Rotifera, Lagunas de Montebello National Park


This study describes the biodiversity of the limnetic zooplankton communities of 18 tropical karst lakes of the Lagunas de Montebello National Park, Chiapas. Sampling was carried out in 2 contrasting climatic periods. A total of 59 zooplankton species were identified (25 Copepoda, 13 Cladocera and 21 Rotifera). Montebello's global biodiversity is relatively high (∼11%) with reference to what is reported for the entire country. However, the species richness per lake varies from 4 to 24 species with an average of 10.2 ± 6.0. The most frequent species are the copepods Mastigodiaptomus maya and M. nesus, the cladocerans Diaphanosoma cf. birgei, Ceriodaphnia dubia and Eubosmina tubicen, and the rotiferan Keratella americana. Eutrophic lakes showed higher species richness and share more  species in common than oligotrophic lakes; the species richness of the deep lakes is lower than that of the shallow, and that of the plateau doubles those of the mountain lakes. M. maya is the only species inhabiting all lake types. The high singularity of the zooplankton of each lake demonstrates the fragility of these ecosystems so pollution and/or eutrophication threaten the high regional zooplankton biodiversity.

Biografía del autor/a

Rocío Fernández, Facultad de Estudios Superiores, Iztacala. UNAM


Grupo de Investigación en Limnología Tropical



Grupo de Investigación en Limnología Tropical



Grupo de Investigación en Limnología Tropical


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