02 September 2020
To evaluate the effects of the Hongyanhe Nuclear Power Plant on the zooplankton community in the surrounding seawater during summer, multiple environmental factors and zooplankton distribution along the east coast of Liaodong Bay were investigated in the summer of 2017. In particular, the influences of seawater temperature, salinity, and chlorophyll a (Chl a) on the zooplankton community were analyzed. Zooplankton abundances and Chl a concentrations along the east coast of Liaodong Bay showed an initial increase followed by a decrease from July to September. During the three months, the zooplankton abundance was the highest (8116.70 ind m −3) in August. The Shannon-Wiener index showed a downtrend from July to September, with the average value falling from 1.65 in July to 1.50 in September. Calanus sinicus, Paracalanus parvus, copepodid, and bivalve larvae were the dominant species/groups in the three months. The effects of the nuclear power plant’s outlet on the environment factors were mainly reflected in the increased seawater temperature. Redundancy analysis showed that the zooplankton community was jointly affected by seawater temperature, salinity and Chl a concentration, and the degree of this impact varied monthly. The impact of seawater temperature on the zooplankton community was stronger than that of salinity. The primary impact of the Hongyanhe Nuclear Power Plant on the structure and distribution of the zooplankton community in the surrounding seawater during the summer was increased seawater temperature, which caused a reduction in the abundance of dominant species/groups.