The effects of pollution on the benthic macroinvertebrates of Big Lick Creek, Indiana

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dc.contributor.advisor Smith, Charles E. (Charles Edward), 1927- en_US Wortham, Kenneth Earl, 1942- en_US
dc.coverage.spatial n-us-in en_US 2011-06-03T19:32:42Z 2011-06-03T19:32:42Z 1974 en_US 1974
dc.identifier LD2489.Z64 1974 .W67 en_US
dc.description.abstract The objective of this research, conducted between November 1972 and March 1974, was to determine the effects of pollution on the benthic macroinvertebrates of Big Lick Creek. Big Lick Creek, a tributary of the Mississinewa River, is located in east central Indiana and has a permanent length of about 32.2 km. Sewage and industrial waste from the cities of Dunkirk and Hartford City are discharged into this stream.The composition and distribution of macroinvertebrate populations, collected with artificial substrate samplers, were used to determine the extent of stream pollution. Samplers consisted of cylindrical barbecue baskets (28 x 18 cm) filled with 12 concrete spheres 7.5 cm in diameter. Samplers anchored to the stream bed at five locations bracketed major sources of pollution. Chemical and physical determinations were performed to provide a general background for existing biological conditions.Significant chemical and bacteriological conditions encountered in the stream below the sewage effluents of Dunkirk and Hartford City, Indiana were as follow: (1) dissolved oxygen minima of 2 ppm or less; (2) free carbon dioxide maxima in excess of 60 ppm; (3) increases in nutrients such as the various forms of nitrogen and phosphate; and (4) drastic increases in fecal coliform densities.Twenty-six species of benthic macroinvertebrates were collected during the study with marked reductions in the number of species occurring below the effluents of Dunkirk and Hartford City. The average number of species occurring below these polluting effluents was 10.5 as compared to 22 farther downstream in recovery zones.Limiting and selective effects of organic pollution were indicated by the composition of the benthic community at each station. Tubificids, tolerant of excessive organic pollution and associated low dissolved oxygen levels, constituted more than 99 per cent of the benthic communities sampled below Dunkirk and Hartford City. Limnodrilus hoffmeisteri, L. udekemianus, and Tubifex tubifex were the dominant species. A maximum tubificid density of 13,050/m2 was obtained below Hartford City.Samples taken from a recovery zone 14.8 km downstream from Dunkirk and a corresponding zone 10.1 km below Hartford City showed more diverse fauna. In the recovery zone below Dunkirk, species other than tubificid represented 17 per cent of the total number of invertebrates collected. In the analogous zone below Hartford City, these species constituted 89 per cent of the total taken. Chironomid larvae comprised 13 per cent of the total obtained in the recovery zone downstream from Dunkirk, and 89 per cent in the similar zone below Hartford City. Chironomus was the dominant chironomid genus.All species collected, in numbers sufficient to be considered, were members of an indicator association (Gaufin 1958) characteristic of organically enriched environments. According to the pollution classification system of Goodnight and Whitley (1961), Stations 1 through 4 were heavily polluted and Station 5 was in good condition. en_US
dc.format.extent ix, 110 leaves : ill. ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Water -- Pollution -- Indiana -- Big Lick Creek. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Benthos -- Indiana -- Big Lick Creek. en_US
dc.title The effects of pollution on the benthic macroinvertebrates of Big Lick Creek, Indiana en_US Thesis (D. Ed.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3248]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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