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Les bassins d'eau pluviale autoroutiers en région Méditerranéenne: Fonctionnement et Biodiversité
Evaluation de l'impact de la pollution routière sur les communautés animales aquatiques

Abstract : Landscape has never been as altered by urbanization and road development as it occurred during the XXth century. Wetlands have been greatly affected by these transformations that leaded to a decrease by about 90 % of their number in Europe. In order to avoid the contamination of water resource from road traffic pollution, the French water law, voted in 1992, compelled highway companies to treat road run-off waters. This leaded to the construction of stormwater ponds along roads which main objectives are (i) limiting pollution risk (chronic and accidental) and (ii) reducing flooding events. Because of their number in the landscape, these engineering structures represent a large network of small virgin wetlands, quickly colonised by a variety of aquatic organisms. Despite their numbers and originality these systems are still poorly understood.
Our study, located in southern France, in the Mediterranean region, aimed at studying the annual biological cycle of aquatic invertebrates, dragonfly and amphibians in six stormwater ponds of the Autoroutes du Sud de la France (ASF) road network. Three main questions were asked, that is to say (i) are these sites polluted and how much?, (ii) what about their biological richness deals with such ponds? and (iii) can we describe and quantify an impact of this eventual pollution on aquatic communities?.
We showed that the pollution was heterogeneous in space and time, mainly characterised by a contamination of sediments by hydrocarbons and trace metals (copper and zinc mainly) and by the irregular presence of herbicides (mainly glyphosate and its by-product AMPA) in the water column. Community structure of invertebrates and vertebrates assemblages was characterised. It appeared to be rich and diversified, mainly for the dragonfly community.
If road pollution alone is not enough to explain distribution patterns of species in ponds, biodiversity seems to be more sensitive to other environmental features acting at different scales : landscape mosaic structure for amphibians and pond surface or macrophyte richness for dragonflies.
These observations point out the issue of Nature's adaptation face to the increasing artificialisation of our environment.
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Submitted on : Monday, October 23, 2006 - 10:34:19 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, October 20, 2020 - 3:11:06 AM
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Olivier Scher. Les bassins d'eau pluviale autoroutiers en région Méditerranéenne: Fonctionnement et Biodiversité
Evaluation de l'impact de la pollution routière sur les communautés animales aquatiques. Ecologie, Environnement. Université de Provence - Aix-Marseille I, 2005. Français. ⟨tel-00109123⟩

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