WP 7: Investigating core stream type 1 (small-sized, shallow, mountain streams) and 2 (medium-sized, deeper, lowland streams)


To provide complete sets of data from sites of two stream types, distributed across Central and Northern Europe, in order to inter-calibrate methods, integrate data from a variety of taxonomic/morphological sources, to standardise their application to the assignment of sites to grades of ecological status and to identify those forms of data best suited to which regions, which source of environmental stress and which stage (e.g. early or late) of environmental perturbation.

Methodology/work description

For the purposes of this proposal two core streams types are recognised: small-sized, shallow, mountain streams (core stream type 1) and medium-sized, deeper, lowland streams (core stream type 2). Besides the evaluation of existing data (Workpackage 4) we will sample a completely new data set to gain comparable data on various taxonomic groups taken with a set of different methods from sites representing different stages of degradation. This will be a main source of data for cross-comparisons and the preparation of standards.

The specific rules governing the number and type of sites to be sampled are as follows:

The following samples will be taken:

The sampling, survey and sample processing protocols to be used are all standard techniques currently in use in one or more Council of Europe Member State or research projects and each are prescribed in detailed, publicly available manuals. Sorting and identification of diatom and macroinvertebrate samples will be undertaken in the laboratory using prescriptive procedures in standard manuals. Identification will be to the best achievable and should be to species level wherever possible. Sorting and identification will be primarily by the scientific partners of the relevant Member State.

River Habitat Survey (or equivalent) is a field based recording system, supplemented by additional time variant information acquired from cartographic/GIS sources. For each sampling site the AQEM site protocol containing 130 hydrological, abiotic and morphological parameters will be completed to gain comparable information on the ecological status.

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