OnLine Journal of Biological Sciences

Bheri-A Unique Example of Biological Complex System

Indranil Mukherjee, Pranami Bhaumik, Madhusmita Mishra, Ashoke R. Thakur and Shaon R. Chaudhuri

DOI : 10.3844/ojbsci.2010.1.10

OnLine Journal of Biological Sciences

Volume 10, Issue 1

Pages 1-10

Abstract

Problem statement: This study is a unique attempt to characterize Bheri (shallow flat bottom waste water fed fishery) as a complex biological system. Approach: The characterization was done both at the qualitative and the quantitative levels. The diverse microbial community and the associated emergent behaviors resulting in integrated resource recovery by the Bheris were analyzed under the lens of complexity to gain an understanding about the qualitative features. To carry out quantitative characterization, ideas of scaling and power law relationships were emphasized through statistical analysis of observed data. Results: On comparing the plankton diversity of the Bheris with rain water and waste water fed ponds located within Calcutta (India) as well as Dhaka (Bangladesh), the former indicated clear evidence of exhibiting power law behavior (which is a strong signature of complexity). The adequacy of observations was reflected in the saturation of the curves obtained on plotting the number of observations against the Operational Taxonomic Unit (OTU). Conclusion: This study clearly reveals Bheri as a biological complex system both at qualitative and quantitative levels as compared to rain water as well as waste water fed ponds.

Copyright

© 2010 Indranil Mukherjee, Pranami Bhaumik, Madhusmita Mishra, Ashoke R. Thakur and Shaon R. Chaudhuri. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.