Skip main navigation

Biomonitoring for Water Quality: Sampling and Laboratory Processing

Biomonitoring for water quality involves two major steps, sampling and laboratory processing. Watch the video for more information.

The process of biomonitoring for water quality involves two major steps, sampling and laboratory processing.

Sampling methods vary depending on the taxa being studied, but electrofishing, surber samplers, and kicking nets are common methods for collecting fish and macroinvertebrates. In the laboratory, taxon identification is crucial for calculating different indices to determine water quality. Identification levels can range from family to species depending on the monitoring purposes. Citizen science has become popular for freshwater ecosystem monitoring, as it not only provides educational and interesting activities but also raises environmental awareness in the public. It is easy for citizens to participate in biomonitoring, especially using macroinvertebrates, which can be found in streams by picking up stones from the stream bed.

Review questions:

  • What are the two major steps of biomonitoring for water quality?
  • What are some common methods for collecting fish and macroinvertebrates during sampling?
  • Why is taxon identification important during laboratory processing?
This article is from the free online

Sustainable Development in Health and Ecology

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now