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					Envirothon Workshop
     Aquatic Ecology
        1-26-08
     George Guillen
     Distribution of Surface Water
   WATER: Most of the
    surface water on the
    Planet located in
    oceans,
                              Oceans
   71% of earth covered
    by saltwater, 97.2% of    Frozen
    the worlds water is in
                              Freshwater
    the ocean
   Freshwater very rare!
                     Water Cycle terms



[   ] Condensation             [   ] Evaporation
[   ] Evapotranspiration       [   ] Freshwater storage
[   ] Ground-water discharge   [   ] Ground-water storage
[   ] Infiltration             [   ] Precipitation
[ ] Snowmelt runoff to
                               [   ] Spring
streams
[   ] Stream flow              [   ] Sublimation
                               [ ] Water storage in the
[   ] Surface runoff
                               atmosphere
[ ] Water storage in ice and
                               [   ] Water storage in oceans
snow
Natural Ground Cover                      40%
                                   Evapotranspiration




                      10% Runoff

        25%
     Shallow
    infiltration               25% Deep
                               infiltration
                   Infiltration               Source: U.S. EPA
Groundwater: Different types of aquifers and how
 each type relates to water quantity and quality
           Aquifers - unconfined
   Groundwater below a layer of solid rock or clay
    is said to be in a confined aquifer. The rock or
    clay is called a confining layer. A well that goes
    through a confining layer is known as an
    artesian well.
   The groundwater in confined aquifers is usually
    under pressure. This pressure causes water in an
    artesian well to rise above the aquifer level.
           Aquifers - Unconfined
   Water percolates through the soil until the soil is
    saturated. The top of the saturated zone is called the
    water table. The water table rises and falls according to
    the season and the amount of rain that has occurred.

Note that bedrock below the saturated zone prevents the
 water from penetrating more deeply.

   An unconfined aquifer lacks a confining layer on the
    top of the saturated zone.

                 http://groundwater.orst.edu/under/aquifer.html#Confined
                           Aquifers
   Confined aquifer                   Unconfined aquifer

   Slow to recharge; recharge         Quick to recharge; recharge
    time may be in years or             time may be in months or
    decades                             even days

   Less susceptible to pollution      More susceptible to pollution
                                       Quantities of water generally
   Quantity of water greater           lower than confined aquifers
    than unconfined
                  Aquifers -
   Unconfined aquifer
aquifers
Ground Water Protection
  Climate – longitudinal gradient,
effect on freshwater flows in Texas
        References for Water Cycle
   Good source for diagrams, terms, and extensive discussion of all the water
    cycle components. Also simple methods for demonstrating sublimation and
    transpiration:
    http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/watercyclesummary.html#oceans

   Interesting, animated interactive water cycle:
    www.mrhall.org/science/epawatercycle/epawatercycle.htm

   Water cycle activities, 9th grade and lower:
    www.fi.edu/guide/bond/watercycleact.html

   Basic concept of water cycle with a section on human impacts:
    www.purdue.edu/dp/envirosoft/groundwater/src/cycle.htm
Properties of water -
chemical properties
           A water molecule contains one
           atom of oxygen bound to two
           atoms of hydrogen. The hydrogen
           atoms are "attached" to one side
           of the oxygen atom, resulting in a
           water molecule having a positive
           charge on the side where the
           hydrogen atoms are and a negative
           charge on the other side, where
           the oxygen atom is. Since opposite
           electrical charges attract, water
           molecules tend to attract each
           other, making water kind of
           "sticky." (If the water molecule
           here looks familiar, remember that
           everyone's favorite mouse is
           mostly water, too).
             Properties of water -
             chemical properties
As the right-side diagram
shows, the side with the
hydrogen atoms (positive
charge) attracts the oxygen
side (negative charge) of a
different water molecule. All
these water molecules
attracting each other mean
they tend to clump together.
This is why water drops are,
in fact, drops!
          Properties of water -
          physical properties

Water is unique in that it is the only natural
substance that is found in all three states --
liquid, solid (ice), and gas (steam) -- at the
temperatures normally found on Earth.
               Properties of water -
               physical properties
   Water freezes at 32 Fahrenheit (F) and boils at 212 F.
    water's freezing and boiling points are the baseline with
    which temperature is measured: 0 on the Celsius scale is
    water's freezing point, and 100 is water's boiling point
    (at 1 atm, freshwater).
    Weight: 62.416 pounds per cubic foot at 32°F
   Weight: 61.998 pounds per cubic foot at 100°F
   Weight: 8.33 pounds/gallon, 0.036 pounds/cubic inch
   Density: 1 gram per cubic centimeter (cc) at 39.2°F,
Fresh water ecosystems – important
        properties of water
   Ice is water in its solid form. Unlike most
    substances, which are densest in their solid state,
    ice is less dense than water and thus floats.
   If this were not the case, Fresh water lakes and
    rivers would freeze from the bottom up. Fish
    could not survive, and it is unlikely that rivers
    and lakes in northern countries would ever
    completely thaw. E.g. Read Kurt Vonnegut –
    “Ice 9”
     Unique Properties of Water
• Dissolving ability –
  dissolves more
  substances in greater
  quantities than any
  other common liquid

• Presence of dissolved
  ions in water changes
  physical properties
  e.g. freezing points,
  density
       Water and Weather - Oceans
   The oceans have a profound influence on
    climate. They are the world's great heat
    reservoirs and heat exchangers.
   Water has a high specific heat index. The high
    specific heat index of water also helps regulate
    the rate at which air changes temperature, which
    is why the temperature change between seasons
    is gradual rather than sudden, especially near the
    oceans.
              Worlds Oceans




• 80% of Southern Hemisphere.
• 61% of Northern Hemisphere.
   Unique Properties of Water
• Water = Life
• Without water life could not have
  evolved
      References for properties of water


   http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/waterproperties.html



   http://www.ec.gc.ca/WATER/en/nature/prop/e_therm.htm
                      Water Uses



   United States Geological
    Service (USGS) surveys
    nation wide water use
    every 5 years. The chart
    to the right is based on
    the 2000 survey.
           Water Users -References
   http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/wateruse.html

   Estimated use of Water in the United States in 2000:
    http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/wateruse2000.html
What Is a Watershed?
A watershed is the area of land that drains
   to a particular point along a stream




                                    Center for Watershed Protection
         Watershed Delineation
   Can be accomplished using topographic maps,
    flow occurs at right angles to elevation lines
   Now days is usually done with GIS software and
    programs that examine digital elevation models
    and generate likely pathways of flow i.e.
    watershed
Watershed delineation references
  City of Richardson, Texas: http://www.cor.net/
 Maps and various publications on water resources in
   the Trinity River Basin:
http://tx.usgs.gov/trin/pubs
 TCEQ website
 HGAC website
 TNRIS website
 GLO website
 ESRI – ArcGIS website
           Types of Waterbodies
   Ocean – including major seas, high salinity, tides
    (35 ppt)
   Estuary – where river meets sea, intermediate
    salinity (0-35 ppt)
   Freshwater (usually 0 ppt, but can vary.
    Measured in conductivity (20-1000, high
    conductivity >1000 = salts)
Types of Freshwater Waterbodies
   Streams
       Intermittent
       Perennial
   Rivers (usually 4th order and above), deeper, warmer,
    more turbid
   Ponds – small lakes (< 5 acres)
   Lakes – none in Texas (Caddo Lake only)
   Reservoirs – impounded rivers, long and deep, e.g.
    Lake Houston
   Wetlands – shallow, emergent vegetation, high
    likelihood of drying out annually, adjacent to rivers,
    oxbows, ponds etc.
Ponds and Natural Lakes
Reservoirs
Wetlands
Streams and Rivers
 Alteration of Aquatic
Habitat Due to Changes
     in Watershed
From Lane, 1955
                                                                                Impervious
                                                                                 Cover and
                                                                                Storm water
                                                                                  Runoff

                                                100% Precipitation over Watershed

                                                                       Natural Developed
                            Evaporation                                    40%                       25%

                            Surface Runoff                                 10%                      50%
                            Groundwater                                    50%                      30%
Source: U.S. EPA and Center for Watershed Protection “Site Planning for Urban Stream Protection”, Dec 1995
             Impervious Cover and
              Storm water Runoff


              Surface Runoff Generated
             from a One-Inch Rainstorm

  One-Acre Open Meadow         -        218 cubic feet
One-Acre Paved Parking Lot - 3,460 cubic feet

                          Source: U.S. EPA and Center for Watershed Protection
                          “Site Planning for Urban Stream Protection”, Dec 1995
Erosion & sedimentation

     Effects of road building
     Logging
     Grazing
            Wetland Functions
1.   Water Quality improvement,
2.   Flood protection
3.   Shoreline erosion control
4.   Fish and Wildlife Habitat and nursery areas
5.   Recreational and aesthetic appreciation,
     waterfowl hunting, and natural products
Protecting wetlands in turn can protect our
   safety and welfare.

                   www.epa.gov/owow/wetlands/vital/people.html
Natural Water Quality Improvement
    Wetlands have important           Bolivar Flats, Texas
    filtering capabilities for
    intercepting surface- water
    runoff from higher dry land
    before the runoff reaches
    open water. As the runoff
    water passes through, the
    wetlands retain excess
    nutrients and some
    pollutants, and reduce
    sediment that would clog
    waterways and affect fish and
    amphibian egg development.
Wetlands provide flood protection
                     Wetlands function as natural
                     sponges that trap and slowly
                     release surface water, rain,
                     snowmelt, groundwater and
                     flood waters. Trees, root
                     mats, and other wetland
                     vegetation also slow the
                     speed of flood waters and
                     distribute them more slowly
                     over the floodplain. This
                     combined water storage and
                     braking action lowers flood
                     heights and reduces erosion.
        Riparian = Edge of Water
   Riparian Habitat: Areas adjacent to rivers and
    streams with a differing density, diversity, and
    productivity of plant and animal species relative
    to nearby uplands.
   Removal of riparian vegetation increases
    erosion, reduces shading (increasing instream
    temperature), and increases surface runoff
                                   REFERENCES
American Rivers, Natural Resources Defense Council and Smart Growth America, 2002,
Paving Our Way to Water Shortages: How Sprawl Aggravates the Effects of Drought
Center for Watershed Protection, October 1998, Rapid Watershed Planning Handbook:
A Comprehensive Guide for Managing Urbanizing Watersheds
Center for Watershed Protection, December 1995, Site Planning for Urban Stream
Protection
North Carolina Stream Restoration Institute and North Carolina Sea Grant, Stream
Restoration: A Natural Channel Design Handbook
North Central Texas Council of Governments, www.dfwinfo.com/forecast
University of Virginia, July 2002, A Stream Corridor Protection Strategy for Local
Governments, http://www.virginia.edu/~envneg/IEN_home/htm.
US Department of Agriculture/Soil Conservation Service, Agricultural Handbook 296,
USGPO, Washington, D.C.
US Department of Agriculture/Soil Conservation Service, 1981, Land Resource Regions
and Major Land Resource Areas of the United States, USGPO, Washington, D.C.
US Department of Agriculture/Soil Conservation Service, National Resources Inventory,
www.usda/nrcs.gov/technical/NRI
U.S. EPA, 2005, Protecting Water Resources with Smart Growth, Publication
EPA 231-R-04-002, www.smartgrowth.org
              Water Quality
   Water quality is composed of and
    measured in terms of biological,
    physical, chemical and aesthetic traits.
   Water quality is defined by it’s ability to
    support a designated use: contact
    recreation, aquatic life use, fish and
    shellfish consumption, drinking water
    source, navigation.
   Highest water quality is attained when it
    meets all these functions.
     Water Quality         Assessment
   Biological: bacteria, algae, aquatic insects, fish,
    vegetation
   Physical: temperature, turbidity and clarity, color,
    salinity, suspended solids, dissolved solids, flow,
   Chemical: pH, dissolved oxygen, biological
    oxygen demand, nutrients (including nitrogen and
    phosphorus), organic and inorganic compounds
    (including toxics)
   Aesthetic: odors, taints, color, floating matter
            Biological Assessment
   Many types of bacteria are found in natural waters. For the most
    part bacteria are beneficial; breaking down organic material and
    thus releasing nutrients back into the water. Nutrients that are
    then used for growth of algae and plants.
   Other bacteria in water, when found in large numbers, may cause
    illness and death in people and animals.
    These bacteria are known as pathogens. The source of these
    pathogens is typically human and animal feces entering the
    waterways through direct discharge or indirectly from surface
    runoff.
   Testing of bacteria is routinely performed on many waterways;
    but it is time consuming and fairly expensive.
Biological Assessment
            Biological Assessment
   Many types of insects and other invertebrates and fishes
    live part of their life cycles in water.
   Aquatic insects and fish are often sensitive to pollutants
    in water. This tolerance of different organisms to water
    pollution has been measured.
   This information can be used to indirectly assess
    water quality.
   By sampling the water, the presence or absence of
    different organisms can be quantified.
   Conclusions about the water quality can be drawn from
    this information.
            Seine components (cont)
   Float line - cork,
    styrofoam, or plastic
    floats hold mesh
    upright

   Lead line - lead
    weights attached or
    lead in core of
    polypropylene line
          Invertebrates - Shallow
                 Streams




• D-frame net commonly used (kick net)
  – Held at bottom
  – Water upstream agitated by foot
Invertebrates
       • Surber sampler
         – Opening
           upstream
         – Rim delineates 1
           square foot
         – Substrate within
           rim removed or
           agitated
         – Organisms drift
           into bag
       Invertebrates often used
            as an index of

• Fishing
  quality
• Ecological
  integrity
• Degree of
  pollution
Indices may focus on
       • Single (sentinel) taxon
       • All collected taxa
Indices successfully
    used because

             • Incorporate a
               biological
               response to
               environmental
               conditions
       Rapid Bioassessment
• Easily and quickly obtained
• Compares data with standards from
  unaffected site
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Invertebrates
Examples – minnow and suckers
                              Erimyzon oblongus




   Cyprinus carpio Carp




  Notropis texanus        Ictiobus bulbalus
                          Examples
                                         Red shiner Notropis lutrensis
    Pugnose shiner




Notropis volucellus – mimic shiner   Golden shiner Notemigonus chrysoleucas
            Native Catfish
Channel Catfish        Flathead Catifsh




Tadpole Madtom           Black Bullhead
Fundulidae, Poecilidae and
    Cyprinodontidae
 Fundulus chrysotus         Gambusia affinis




    Cyprinodon variegatus     Fundulus notatus
Centrachidae
           Spotted Bass




         Rock bass
                         Yellow Perch
          Percidae




Walleye



                     Darter
             Other Wildlife
• Look for animal tracks – deer, racoon, etc
• Look for waterbirds – egrets, kingfisher,
  herons, osprey
• Look for amphibians – tadpoles, adults
• Note: Issue - Amphibian decline
Wildlife
Identify common aquatic organisms
      through the use of a key
   All keys are based on distinguishing
    characteristics
   The size or shape of head, thorax, or abdomen
    can be a distinguishing characteristics
   Usually series of dichotomous statements
                  Key: Example
   1) Abdomen shape
      Abdomen with two feather-like extensions – go to 2
      Abdomen with no or three feather-like extensions – go to
       3.
             Physical Assessment
   The physical characteristics of the watershed, flood
    plain, and riparian area greatly influence water quality
    and the quality and quantity of available habitat for
    organisms.
   Extremes of water temperature are moderated by the
    amount and type of vegetation in the riparian areas
    (shading)
   The amount of turbidity, suspended solids, dissolved
    solids directly relates to soils present in the
    watershed, also to the amount of soil disturbance.
Habitat quality influences

      • Numbers
      • Sizes
      • Species of
        Aquatic
        Organisms
   Physical Stream Measures
• Drainage density-total
  stream length of
  watershed/ watershed area
• Gradient-No of contour
  intervals crossed by
  stream/ distance
• Sinuosity-meander; stream
  length/valley length
  between same two points
            Stream order-rank of
                relative size
                        • 1st order-smallest
1   1           1   1     unbranched on headwater
                        • 2nd order-two first order
    2       2             streams meet
                        • 3rd order-two second order
        3                 streams meet
                        • Note...order increased only
                          when two of the same
                          order join
     Other Habitat Measures
• Channel gradient- Drop in elevation
  per unit length affects
• Stream velocity
• Habitat types
• Species distribution
• Species abundance
Gradient Calculated by


      • Topographic
        maps
      • Stadia rod
        measures
     Sinuosity - how curvy?

• Low sinuosity
  – Steep gradients
  – Little pool development
• High sinuosity
  – Undercut banks
  – Large, deep pools
Velocity measure

            • Floating
              object
            • Movement of
              dye
            • Mechanical
              current meter
            • Electrical
              current meter
   Discharge, quantity of water
      through channel/ time
• Quantity and quality of
  stream habitats
• Water quality
• Fish passage
Discharge measured
  • Gauging stations
  • Hydrographs
  • Gordon et al (1992)
Substrate composition
           • Quality of
             spawning habitat
           • Fish cover
           • Benthic macro
             invertebrates
             composition
           • Benthic macro
             invertebrates
             production
Substrate
    • Classification by
      – Visual
      – Wentworth scale
Habitat classification


   • Pool (slower water)




   • Riffle (fast water)
Cover- protection

  • Aquatic
    vegetation
  • Boulders
  • Woody
    Debris
  • Water turbulence and depth
  • Riparian features
  Large woody debris (LWD)
• Stabilizes channels
• Forms pools
• Traps spawning
  gravel/organic matter

                   • Habitat for macro
                     invertebrates
                   • Provides cover for
                     fish
Stream shading measure
  • Densiometer
  • Sun arc
  • Solar radiometer
    Physicochemical attributes



•   Temperature
•   Dissolved oxygen
•   Transparency
•   Note: All affect water quality
Water Quality Measures
• Hach Kits
• Electronic sensors/
  meters
  – Yellow Springs
    Instruments (YSI)
  – ICM Perstorp
  – Hydrolab
  – Orion
      Temperature measure

• Electronic thermister

• Mercury thermometer

• Reversing thermometer

• Bathythermograph
    Chemical Assessment - Oxygen
   The amount of dissolved oxygen is critical to
    most aquatic organisms.
   Photosynthesis is the primary source of oxygen
    in most waters. wind-driven wave aeration and
    aeration by falling water can also be significant.
   Dissolved oxygen


• Fish distribution
• Influence on nutrition effects

                 O2


   O2
  Dissolved Oxygen Measure

• Dissolved oxygen meter
• Winkler titration
Transparency affected by

         • Suspended
           particles
         • Plankton

 • Measure using Secchi disk
      Chemical Assessment - pH


   pH range in most inland water is 6-9 standard
    units.
Nitrogen
Nitrogen Cycle




http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/102/ecosystem.html
Phosphorus
   Phosphorus




http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/102/ecosystem.html
                 e.g. Eutrophic



           PO4 =

   High phosphorous
   High chlorophyll a
   Low secchi disk
     Water Assessment Resources
   Good source of information on fish identification and related
    activities:
    http://www.spart5.k12.sc.us/techtraining/teacher/web
    pages/SCFish/sc_fish_activities.htm

   Information on different nutrient and gas cycles:
    http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/102/ecosystem.html
   Protecting Our
Freshwater Resources
            Point Source pollution
   Point sources: A point source is a readily
    identifiable source.
   A typical example is a pipe leading from an
    industry directly to a river. The pipe is easily
    identified and can be traced back to the industry.
   Some examples of point sources are industrial
    plants, wastewater treatment facilities, landfills,
    restaurants, etc.
   Most point sources have already been identified
    and are highly regulated.
      Non-point source pollution
   Not point source!!
   Legal definition (not legally defined or
    regulated), e.g. agricultural sources
   Usually diffuse hard to monitor
   Controlled through best management practices
   New stormwater regulations
   How about natural sources??? Wildlife, bacteria?
Methods for reducing point and non-
      point source pollution
   Point Sources                 Non-point sources
   Reduce untreated              Increase green space
    wastewater leakage from       Water Smart gardening
    collection systems,           Dispose of all liquid
    maintenance!!                  “biodegradable” wastes
   Dispose of all hazardous       in sanitary sewer or
    materials at recycling         recycling day pickup
    centers (not down drain)      Don’t litter
                  Resources
   On the Web:
   EPA
   TCEQ
   HGAC
            Water Conservation
    Major water losses
1.   Water distribution system leaks
2.   Dripping faucets, running toilets
3.   Over-irrigation or inefficient irrigation
     Methods of conserving water -
             households

   Gray water reuse – washing machine and dishwater
    used for plant irrigation
   Low water use settings on appliance
   Run dishwasher when full
   Watering lawns in morning, late evening with timers
   Turning off hose during washing when not using
   Xeriscape
   Drip irrigation
     Methods of conserving water -
             households


   Low flush toilets
   Toilet displacement devices
   Low flow showerheads
   Faucet aerators
   Pressure reduction
Methods of conserving water – local
    government and utilities

   Water distribution system maintenance
   Xeriscape, low water use plants in public places
   Drip irrigation
   Gray water use
   Wastewater recycling (targetted use e.g. Golf
    course irrigation vs. total – drinking water)
   Metering & pricing
  Methods of conserving water and
reducing point and non-point source
        pollution - Example
Water Conservation: The City of
 Richardson website is a good
 source of information.
The supplier of water to
 Richardson, The North Texas
 Municipal Water District, also
 has an informative website.
                  Water Conservation
                     References
   City of Richardson, Texas http://www.cor.net/news/waterconservation.htm

   North Texas Municipal Water District:
    http://www.ntmwd.com/droughtInfo.html

   Hydrograph of water level in Jim Chapman Lake:
    http://ahps.srh.noaa.gov/hydrograph.php?wfo=fwd&gage=sclt2&view=1,1,
    1,1,1,1

   Hydrograph of water level in Lake Lavon:
    http://ahps.srh.noaa.gov/ahps2/hydrograph.php?wfo=fwd&gage=lvnt2&gr
    oup=255084&view=1,1,1,1,1,1
                   Water Conservation

   The majority of the water used in the urban Dallas-Fort Worth area comes
    from lakes (surface water).

   The water sources for Richardson are Lake Chapman and Lake Lavon.

   Included in the references are water level graphs from both Lake Chapman
    and Lake Lavon.

   The water levels can be tracked and hypothetical volumes of water used, and
    more importantly how much water is left, could be calculated.

   This exercise underscores how serious drought conditions are in North Texas
    and can be used to further discussion on conservation.
     Water Protection (Quantity and Quality)
                       Regulation
   Clean Water Quality Act
       NPDES permitting
       319 Program
       Grants
       State Administration
   Safe Drinking Water Act
       Wellhead Protection
       Underground Injection Control
       Sole Source Aquifer
       State Administration
    www.purdue.edu/dp/envirosoft/groundwater/src/epa.htm
         River Water Protection
   Endangered Species Act – endangered aquatic
    organisms – snail darter, others
   Wild and Scenic Rivers Act
   FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission)
    relicensing
   State Water Rights – environmental flows?

				
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