Egg banks in hypersaline lakes of the South-East Europe

Saline Syst. 2009 Mar 17:5:3. doi: 10.1186/1746-1448-5-3.

Abstract

The cyst banks of 6 coastal hypersaline lakes of South-East Europe have been investigated. The study concerned the bottom sediments of Khersonesskoe and Koyashskoe lakes in the Crimea (Ukraine), Nartë saltworks (Albania), Vecchia Salina at Torre Colimena (Apulia, Italy), Pantano Grande and Pantano Roveto at Vendicari (Sicily, Italy). A total of 19 cyst types were recognised. The cyst banks of lakes were found to be well separated in the representation derived from a statistical multivariate data analysis. For all the lakes examined a comparison was possible between the resting community in sediments (cyst bank) and the active one in the water. The cyst banks contained more species than those recorded over a multi-year sampling effort in the water column. The study of cyst hatching, performed on 5 cyst types under lab conditions, demonstrated that cysts do not hatch under the same conditions. Furthermore, each cyst type shows a wide range of preferential hatching conditions, which allow us to confirm the ecological generalism of salt lake species.