Eutrophication - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Eutrophication

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  1. Eutrophication

  2. What is Eutrophication?? • Waterways are naturally low in nutrients, this limits the growth of water plants. • This is a process when a body of water such as a stream becomes over enriched in nutrients. • The nutrients are mainly nitrates and phosphates.

  3. Causes of Eutrophication!! • Eutrophication is when fertilisers used by farmers leak into water courses, these fertilisers could be nitrogen based or things like slurry. • The fertilisers get into the water course due to runoff, the fertilisers is not absorbed by the soil and then drains off the field in rain water.

  4. Effects of Eutrophication!! • As I said earlier water plants are limited by the amount of nutrients, a sudden enrichment of nutrients causes a increase in growth. • The greater biomass of plants increases competition, this will cause more plants to die. • This causes an increase in the number of bacteria which use the dead matter in respiration. • They also use oxygen which is dissolved in the water, in respiration.

  5. Effects of Eutrophication!! • Sensitive animal species such as Trout and Mayfly nymphs are now unable to carry out gas exchange due to less oxygen being dissolved in the water. • This causes them to die, or they are out competed by animals which can extract oxygen from the water better. • The bacteria may also produce toxic by-products that will kill animals living in the water or those using it as drinking water.

  6. Overcoming the Problem • Farmers need to take care with when they able fertilisers, for instance a good time is when its frosty. • Also using organic fertilisers is better • than inorganic, as they break done • and release the nutrients more slowly, • such as slurry. • Also Farmers can take care where they apply fertilisers, for instance not to close to a water course.