Date of Submission

Spring 2019

Academic Programs and Concentrations

Environmental and Urban Studies

Project Advisor 1

Robyn Smyth

Abstract/Artist's Statement

Eutrophication and harmful algal blooms (HABs) are global problems causing severe ecosystem and economic damage and posing a serious health threat to humans and the environment. HABs are increasing as a result of rising temperatures, stagnant waters and nutrient enrichment. There is considerable inquiry into finding applicable measures to monitor and mediate HABs. Furthermore, some potential treatments are under-researched, inadequate or contribute to ecological damage, and it is necessary to determine which methods are effective. For this study, I observed the effects of an unidentified “beneficial bacteria” inoculum product on the water quality and phytoplankton community assemblage of a small, artificial pond from early summer to late fall. I hypothesized that the water quality and phytoplankton community assemblage would show a measurable response to the inoculum treatment. Results showed no indication of phytoplankton community assemblage changing or water quality improving in response to the beneficial bacteria treatment. These findings suggest that bacteria inoculum treatments are ineffective in treating HABs and eutrophic waters. Outflow clearing and dredging to increase the water outflow rate showed a temporary improvement to the water quality, suggesting this method may be a more promising management approach for future HABs.

Open Access Agreement

On-Campus only

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
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