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Habitat ecology and diversity of freshwater zooplankton of Uttarakhand Himalaya, India

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The present contribution is a comprehensive review of the status of biodiversity of freshwater zooplankton of Uttarakhand Himalaya. Uttarakhand harbours a wide diversity in freshwater habitats in terms of rapids, riffles, runs, cascades of falls and pools of rivers and streams and the shallow and swift water of springs and lentic waters of lakes, ponds and reservoirs with varied physico-chemical environmental variables. Freshwater zooplankton of Uttarakhand are composed of the taxa of Protozoa, Rotifera, Copepoda, Cladocera and Ostrocoda. Ritifera contributes maximum (40.50%) with thirty two species followed by Protozoa (22.78%) with eighteen species and Cladocera (22.78%) with eighteen species to the total zooplankton taxa of Uttarakhand. Copepoda contributes 8.86% with seven species, while minimum contribution (5.08%) with only four species is made by Ostracoda to the total zooplankton taxa of Uttarakhand. Seasonal variation in the abundance of zooplankton in addition to diurnal vertical migration in diverse freshwater habitats of Uttarakhand Himalayahas also been reported.


zooplankton, Uttarakhand, Himalaya, freshwater, river, lakes