Benthic Macroinvertebrate Survey Honors Biology 13-14

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Benthic Macroinvertebrate Survey

Benthic Macroinvertebrate SurveyHonors Biology 13-14

Benthic MacroinvertebratesBottom-dwelling, spineless animalsSome species are very pollution tolerant while others are notSpecies are classified/sorted by group depending upon their pollution tolerance (group 1 = intolerant, group 4 = very tolerantDepending upon the diversity of macroinvertebrates, one may indirectly assess the rivers health re: nitrogen and phosphorus pollution

Sampling Benthic MacroinvertebratesWorking as a team, send two people into the water source in waders: one with a benthic collection net and the other with a large sampling panPlace the collection net on the bottom of the river/pond with the current running into the net (if applicable). Gently kick up materials towards the net, allowing the current to sweep the detritus and macroinvertebrates into the net.Empty the net into the collection pan. Repeat steps 2-3 until the collection pan is full.Transfer the collection pan to the bank of the river/pond.Using the attached guide to benthic macroinvertebrates and the data sheet, record and classify any/all macroinvertebrates you find for this water source.Repeat steps 1-5 for the second water source, using another data sheet

Identify & Record DataIdentify each different type of species that you find in your sampleYou do not record the number individuals you find (i.e. 45 snails) but rather how many different species you find

Calculating The Benthic Macroinvertebrate Water Quality IndexEach species counts as one taxaMultiply the # of taxa for each group by its specific weighting factorSum the group scoresDivide the total group score by the total number of different species/taxa foundThe WQI for benthic macroinvertebrates, unlike the other WQI values is better if the score is LOWER