Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Biomonitoring for deposited sediment using benthic invertebrates: A test on 4 Missouri streams

January 1, 2001

The response of stream benthic invertebrates to surficially deposited fine sediment was investigated in 4 Missouri streams. Twenty to 24 sampling sites in each stream were selected based on similarities of substrate particle-size distributions, depths, and current velocities but for differences in amounts of deposited sediment, which ranged from 0 to 100% surface cover. Deposited sediment was quantified 2 ways: a visual estimate of % surface cover, and a measurement of substrate embeddedness, which were highly correlated with each other and with the amount of sand. Invertebrates were collected using a kicknet for a specified time in a 1-m2 area. Five commonly used biomonitoring metrics (taxa richness, density, Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera [EPT] richness, EPT density, and EPT/Chironomidae richness) were consistently significantly correlated across streams to deposited sediment. Shannon diversity index, Chironomidae richness, Chironomidae density, a biotic index, and % dominant taxon did not relate to increasing levels of deposited sediment. Tolerance values representing taxa responses to deposited sediment were developed for 30 taxa. Deposited-sediment tolerance values were not correlated with biotic index tolerance values, indicating a different response by taxa to deposited sediment than to organic enrichment. Deposited-sediment tolerance values were used to develop the Deposited Sediment Biotic Index (DSBI). The DSBI was calculated for all samples (n = 85) to characterize sediment impairment of the sampled streams. DSBI values for each site were highly correlated with measures of deposited sediment. Model validation by a resampling procedure confirmed that the DSBI is a potentially useful tool for assessing ecological effects of deposited sediment.

Publication Year 2001
Title Biomonitoring for deposited sediment using benthic invertebrates: A test on 4 Missouri streams
DOI 10.2307/1468094
Authors L.D. Zweig, Charles F. Rabeni
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of the North American Benthological Society
Index ID 70023373
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center