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Monday, February 6 • 4:20pm - 4:40pm
Technical Session. Assessing Macroinvertebrate Assemblages: Gauging the Importance of Microhabitat in Qualitative Sampling Through the Analysis of Five Commonly Sampled Microhabitat Types in an Effluent Dominated Stream

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AUTHORS: Samuel J. Gradle, Robert E. Colombo, Charles L. Pederson, and Jeffrey R. Laursen

ABSTRACT: Over the past several years, different macroinvertebrate sampling strategies were implemented in the Sangamon River above and below the effluent discharge of Decatur’s sanitary district near Decatur, IL. Although these techniques were effective at examining the overall community composition based on physical habitat they were not effective at detecting differences due to water quality. In the fall of 2015 an enhanced qualitative approach was adopted to better gauge the importance of microhabitat types to macroinvertebrate assemblages in the Sangamon River. In this approach we sampled from five different microhabitats (riffles, fine sediments, root wads, snags, and leaf packs) at six different sites (three upstream of effluent discharge, three below). Comparisons between sites and microhabitat types as well as sites above and below the effluent discharge were made using nonparametric multidimensional scaling (NMDS). Most microhabitats types showed a difference between upstream and downstream reaches. Two way ANOVA was used to compare macroinvertebrate biotic indices of each microhabitat type and the two reaches (upstream and downstream). Rootwads were one of the few microhabitat types present at each site that also had, on average, the highest diversity and richness of the microhabitats sampled. In general, for most of the individual microhabitats examined Simpson’s diversity scores, MBI values, and percent EPT significantly better downstream than upstream.  Beginning in summer 2016, in addition of sampling natural microhabitats artificial substrates were used in sampling to minimize variability among sites due to differences in physical characteristics. These samples are currently being processed.                                    

Monday February 6, 2017 4:20pm - 4:40pm CST
Grand Ballroom F