Title

Effects of Low Flow and Stream Drying on Macroinvertebrate Communities

Presenter Information

Kate Menke

Department

Biological Sciences

Major

Biological Sciences

Research Advisor

Niyogi, Dev

Advisor's Department

Biological Sciences

Funding Source

Missouri S& T Opportunities for Undergraduate Research Experiences (OURE) Program

Abstract

One concern with climate change for Missouri streams in the future is the possible loss of reliable flow, or increased stream drying. The two OURE students have examined biological communities along Mill Creek in Phelps County, Missouri. Mill Creek is a unique stream with a complex hydrology. There are several springs that feed the stream, which itself can lose water in some reaches because of the karst geology. Downstream from Wilkins Spring, the main spring in the watershed, the stream has a reliable flow. Certain upstream reaches have become intermittent or ephemeral given the drought in 2012. The main project goal of the students is to collect data on the biological communities along this stream, and determine the species composition and diversity of the biota. The data sets will prove useful for comparison of stream biota across a gradient of flow permanence. We have focused on collection and analysis of invertebrate communities thus far. There are large differences in the communities among the sites. The downstream, perennial reach has a typical Ozark stream community with many mayflies, caddisflies, and a high diversity of animal life. The upper reaches, with less reliable flow, have less diverse communities, with very different taxa. These upper reaches have some beetles, damselflies, and other taxa that are common to ponds and reservoirs, as opposed to streams.

Biography

Kate is a sophomore in Biological Sciences. She is a member of the soccer team and is involved in M-club, a service organization for collegiate athletes. In her free time she enjoys riding horses, cooking, and spending time outdoors.

Research Category

Sciences

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Document Type

Presentation

Location

Upper Atrium/Hallway

Presentation Date

03 Apr 2013, 9:00 am - 11:45 am

Comments

Joint project Andrew Bromet

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Apr 3rd, 9:00 AM Apr 3rd, 11:45 AM

Effects of Low Flow and Stream Drying on Macroinvertebrate Communities

Upper Atrium/Hallway

One concern with climate change for Missouri streams in the future is the possible loss of reliable flow, or increased stream drying. The two OURE students have examined biological communities along Mill Creek in Phelps County, Missouri. Mill Creek is a unique stream with a complex hydrology. There are several springs that feed the stream, which itself can lose water in some reaches because of the karst geology. Downstream from Wilkins Spring, the main spring in the watershed, the stream has a reliable flow. Certain upstream reaches have become intermittent or ephemeral given the drought in 2012. The main project goal of the students is to collect data on the biological communities along this stream, and determine the species composition and diversity of the biota. The data sets will prove useful for comparison of stream biota across a gradient of flow permanence. We have focused on collection and analysis of invertebrate communities thus far. There are large differences in the communities among the sites. The downstream, perennial reach has a typical Ozark stream community with many mayflies, caddisflies, and a high diversity of animal life. The upper reaches, with less reliable flow, have less diverse communities, with very different taxa. These upper reaches have some beetles, damselflies, and other taxa that are common to ponds and reservoirs, as opposed to streams.