||Rivers are known to be major contributors to eutrophication in marine coastal waters, but little is known on the short-term impact of freshwater surges on the structure and functioning of the marine plankton community. The effect of adding river water, reducing the salinity by 15 and 30%, on an autumn plankton community in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Thau Lagoon, France) was determined during a 6-day mesocosm experiment. Adding river water brought not only nutrients but also chlorophyceans that did not survive in the brackish mesocosm waters. The addition of water led to initial increases (days 1-2) in bacterial production as well as increases in the abundances of bacterioplankton and picoeukaryotes. After day 3, the increases were more significant for diatoms and dinoflagellates that were already present in the Thau Lagoon water (mainly Pseudo-nitzschia spp. group delicatissima and Prorocentrum triestinum) and other larger organisms (tintinnids, rotifers). At the same time, the abundances of bacterioplankton, cyanobacteria, and picoeukaryote fell, some nutrients (NH4 (+), SiO4 (3-)) returned to pre-input levels, and the plankton structure moved from a trophic food web based on secondary production to the accumulation of primary producers in the mesocosms with added river water. Our results also show that, after freshwater inputs, there is rapid emergence of plankton species that are potentially harmful to living organisms. This suggests that flash flood events may lead to sanitary issues, other than pathogens, in exploited marine areas.