The effects of acid mine drainage (AMD) in a stream and groundwater near an abandoned copper mine were characterized by physicochemical properties, bacterial community structure using denaturing gel gradient electrophoresis (DGGE), and microbial activity/diversity using Ecoplate technique. Based on DGGE fingerprints, the eubacterial community structures grouped into the stream water (GRS1, GRS2 and GRS3) and groundwater samples (GW1 and GW2), apparently based on differences in water temperature and the concentrations of dissolved oxygen, nitrate and sulfate. The most highly AMD-contaminated sample (GRS1) had additional α-Proteobacteria whereas the groundwater samples included additional β-Proteobacteria, suggesting the development of populations resistant to AMD toxicity under aerobic and anaerobic conditions, respectively. Community level physiological activities on the 31 Ecoplate substrates suggested that the activities decreased with increasing concentrations of sulfate and heavy metals derived from AMD. The Shannon index showed that microbial diversity was greatest in GRS2, and lowest in GRS1, and was probably related to the level of AMD.
- Acid mine drainage
- Microbial community structure
- Microbial diversity