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Water chemistry trends and biological state after termination of lake liming in Hedmark county

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Tor Erik Eriksen
Øyvind Aaberg Garmo, Stein Ivar Johnsen, Tor Erik Eriksen, Jarl Eivind Løvik, Kjetil Olstad


In 2013, all state funded liming of lakes in Hedmark was stopped. In this survey, the aim has been to document changes in water chemistry and the state of benthic macroinvertebrates, crayfish, and fish communities after termination of liming. The concentration of sulphate and nitrate was low and close to expected background level. Calsium has decreased since liming was terminated, but is still higher than the expected unlimed level, especially in southern parts of the county. This is most likely caused by long-term effects of sedimented lime, as shown in other surveys. The pH is reduced, but not to levels that correspond to "moderate" or poorer condition according to the national classification system, cf. the European Union’s Water Framework Directive. The same applies to acid-neutralizing capacity (ANC) where this was determined, and the concentrations of labile aluminum (LAl) were with few exceptions low. The state of the benthic macroinvertebrate fauna was assessed as “good” in 33 of 50 investigated lakes and “moderate” or worse in 12 lakes using “Forsuringsindeks 1”. The worst conditions were found in southern parts of the county, especially in the Nord-Odal and Åsnes area. In the upper parts of River Flagstadelva, the density of brown trout has decreased in the period 2014-2016, a trend that might be caused by changes in water chemistry after termination of liming. Crayfish (Astacus astacus) populations were examined in four localities historically affected by acidificatio. Historical data are available for three of the stocks, and they have not recovered.