Water Quality Assessment with Aquatic Invertebrates
BETTS ECOLOGY CASE STUDY: WATER QUALITY ASSESSMENT WITH AQUATIC INVERTEBRATES
Betts Ecology are often required to assess the ecological quality of surface freshwaters on or running through sites. We do take chemical samples but often a better way is to examine the aquatic animals that are living in the water and thus “sampling” it all the time. Different taxa are variably sensitive to pollution and so can be “scored” as bioindicators.
Clients & Location
Various. It may be clients who need to change the use of land in one way or another and need baseline data, or often there is episodic pollution to be quantified, sourced and remedied. Over the years we have investigated many water bodies in the UK as well as a number overseas. UK catchments in which we have worked include the Severn, Trent and Thames.
Betts Ecology sample the water body (nets, dippers, substratum search, “kick” sampling, etc.), identify the organisms collected using our specialist knowledge and comprehensive library of keys and score the results against various indices.
Interpretation of results and index scores allows the water body to be classified according to how pure it is and its ecological status. Betts Ecology are often able to identify point source or generalised pollution and proposed methods of avoidance, mitigation or remediation.
Photos © Betts Ecology unless otherwise stated