The diatom microflora of 10 springs in the Lodz Hills is described: 456 taxa were found. Most of them, 313 taxa are new, rare or interesting. The diatom assemblages in these springs are illustrated, and the documentation consists of more than 1500 micrographs (1154 LEM and 365 SEM). Among the 456 diatom taxa identified, 50 are mentioned in the Red List of the Algae in Poland. Nine diatom taxa were classified as endangered, 15 as vulnerable, 24 as rare, and only two taxa as indeterminate.
Springs are the mainstay of diatom species diversity because they are affected by changes associated with human activities more slowly than other aquatic ecosystems. The analysis of the relationship between diatom assemblages and environmental conditions was based on 10 springs in which physical and chemical samples were measured and samples were collected monthly from January 2003 to June 2005. For the ecological analyses of the diatom assemblages the following were used: indexes of diversity, k-dominance curves, Bray-Curtis coefficient, Hierachical Cluster analysis, MDS, SIMPER, BIO- ENV, PCA, and correlation analysis.