Diffuse groundwater pollution from agricultural land use may impact the microbial groundwater community, which was investigated as Community-Level Physiological Profiles (CLPP) using EcoPlate™. Water was sampled from seven piezometers and a spring in a small agricultural catchment with diffuse herbicide and nitrate pollution. Based on the Shannon–Wiener and Simpson's diversity indices the diversity in the microbial communities was high. The response from the EcoPlates™ showed which substrates support groundwater bacteria, and all 31 carbon sources were utilized by organisms from at least one water sample. However, only nine carbon sources were utilized by all water samples: d-Mannitol, N-acetyl-d-glucosamine, putrescine, d-galacturonic acid, itaconic acid, 4-hydroxy benzoic acid, tween 40, tween 80, and l-asparagine. In all water samples the microorganisms preferred d-mannitol, d-galacturonic acid, tween 40, and 4-hydroxy benzoic acid as substrates, whereas none preferred 2-hydroxy benzoic acid, α-d-lactose, d,l-α-glycerol phosphate, α-ketobutyric acid, l-threonine and glycyl-l-glutamic acid. Principal Component Analysis of the CLPP's clustered the most agriculturally affected groundwater samples, indicating that the agricultural land use affects the groundwater microbial communities. Furthermore, the ability to mineralize atrazine and isoproturon, which have been used in the catchment, was also associated with this cluster.
- Microbial degradation
- Biolog EcoPlate