Kenneth M. Mackenthun

       Chief, Technical Studies Branch

ROTECT1ON and enhancement of the Nation’s waters in the face of
continued pressures of population and industrial growth, urbanization,
and technological change is a major task and challenge confronting us. A
key to our success will be the extent to which we can define and under-
stand the quality and behavior of the aquatic environment. The study of
life in water is an essential part of that understanding. Determination of
the effects of pollution upon the aquatic biota uses, and recognition and
control of the plants and animals that create nuisances or costly problems
are critical elements in the multifaceted scientific effort needed. This
book, which is devoted to a comprehensive discussion of problem investi-
gation and problem solving through the techniques of aquatic biology, will
be a valuable contribution in assisting those who are involved in the ap-
plied aspects of water pollution control.
DAVID D. DOMINICK, Commissioner
Federal Water Pollution
Control A dininistration
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents. U.S. Government Printing Office
Washington. D.C., 20402 - Price $1.50 (Paper Cover)

JO fulfill a need that has become apparent, this book presents some
practical water pollution biological field investigative techniques and
practices, procedures to solve problems, data analyses, interpretation and
display, and the development and writing of the investigative report. It is
written principally for the biologist inexperienced in these activities, and
for sanitary engineers, chemists, attorneys, water pollution control admin-
istrators, and others who are interested in broadening their understanding
of this discipline.
The book considers the many aquatic environments, their biotic constit-
uents, and the effects of various pollutants upon them. Field investigations
that include forming the study objectives, planning the field study, station
selection, sample collection and examination, data analyses and interpre-
tation, and reporting the results are described. Individual water quality
constituents that affect the aquatic environment are discussed. Examples
of field studies on specific water pollution problems are given with the
collected data presented in many graphic variations. The ability to present
a clear, understandable concept to the viewer by different methods of dis-
playing data is evaluated. Examples of field investigations, with which the
author has been involved, including data collection, analyses. interpreta-
tion and display are given for organic wastes, silts, toxic wastes, acid mine
drainages, eutrophication, and radioactive wastes. Investigations in marine
waters are discussed. Separate chapters detail the biology of municipal
water supplies and sewage treatment. Biological nuisances and slimes are
discussed, as well as their control.
In presenting the book’s contents, over 20 years of biological field in-
vestigative experience are represented in the described field and labora-
tory methods, report writing, and data display. Methodology modifications
presented may be of value to other professional biologists. Because the re-
sults from most problem solving investigations must be presented to the
lay public to engage their support for remedial actions, reporting and data
display must be clear and readily understandable. Clearness and under-
standability have been goals of this book.
Washington, D.C.
September, 1969
‘ I I

SPECIAL acknowledgments for assistance of great magnitude are given:
Mrs. Dorothy Mackenthun for helpful suggestions and critical com-
ments on narrative structure; Mrs. Jean Wilkey for the difficult and pre-
cise task of manuscript typing. checking of innumerable details, and
reference assembly; Mmes. Talmadge Dunkle and Rosalynd Kendall for
reading proofs; Mr. Lowell E. Keup for technical review.
Particular acknowledgments are given my teachers who molded the ess-
ence of this work: Dr. Robert E. Bugbee, the late professor Victor E.
Shelford, the late 0. 1. Muegge, Dr. M. Starr Nichols, Theodore F. Wis-
niewski, Ralph Porges, and F. W. Kitirell.
Acknowledgments are given Mr. Carl Shadix, FWPCA. for Figure 1;
Milo Churchill. Tennessee Valley Authority, Figure 8; Miss Lois Best,
FWPCA, Figure 11; Horn Photo. Clatskanie, Oreg., courtesy of Earl N.
Kari . FWPCA, FiEure 74; Carl A. Werner. District Engineer, California
Department of Water Resources, Figures 79 and 80; Aquatic Controls
Corporation, Hartland, Wis., figure 81; and Dr. John E. Gallagher, Am-
ehem Products. Ambler. Pa., figure 85.
The assistance of past and present coworkers from the many disciplines
within the National Field Investigations Center, FWPCA, was an essential
contributing factor to the gathering of information and the development
of studies presented here. Team effort has become a byword of the Center
and the “team ” included engineers, chemists, biologists, microbiologists,
technicians, secretaries, and administrators.

Pollutional Effects
Pollutional Zones
Organic Wastes
Inorganic Silts
Toxic Metals
Tern perature
Dissolved Oxygen
PI T 1
Major Nutrients
Toxic Substances
Planning 46
Station Selection
Sampling Periodicity 54
Data and Sample Collection 55
Sample Analyses 65
Reporting 72
Demonstrations 77
Menominee River 78
Blackstone River 85
Wisconsin River 87
South Platte River 90
East Pearl River 93
C’oosa River System . . 96
Pot omac River 103
Bear River and Tributaries 103

Monongahela River System
Animas River
Lake Sebasticook, Maine
Lake Tahoe, California-Nevada
Lake Michigan
Badfish Creek, Wisconsin
San Diego Bay
Charleston Harbor, South Carolina
Boston Harbor, Massachusetts
Reservoir Bed Preparation
Tastes and Odors
Filter Clogging Problems
Corrosion Pro bleins
Algae on Reservoir Walls
Iron Bacteria
Copepods and Associates
Water Lice
Clams and Snails
Geist Reservoir
Trickling Filters
A ctivated Sludge
Stabilization Ponds 200
Chattooga River
Mahoning River
Ten Mile River

Sphaerotilus . 214
Sphaerotilus Control . ... 218
Leptomitus 218
Fouling Bacteria 219
Algae 22!
Aquatic Vascular Plants . 225
Animals 228
Chemical Usage 238
Harvesting . .. . 239
Algae 239
Vascular Plants 246
Animals 249
Regulations . . . 251
1. Lake Tahoe: A Jewel of the West 3
2. Pollutional zones 9
3. Sludgeworm eggs with embryos 12
4. Clean water stream bed animals 14
5. Intermediately tolerant stream bed animals 15
6. Very tolerant stream bed animals 16
7. Po llutiona ! effects on animals 18
8. Fontana project, Terinesce Valley Authority 22
9. A blue-green algal nuisance 39
10. Mobile chemical and microbiological laboratories receiving
samples near river bank 46
11. Laboratory analyses being conducted inside mobile laboratory 49
12. Diagram of a natural lake basin showing suggested sampling
sites 51
13. Diagram of a long, narrow reservoir showing suggested sam-
pling stations 53
14. Field collection card for benthic samples 56
15. Biological collecting equipment 59

16. A multiple-plate artificial substrate colonized by aquatic orga-
nisms (Flester-Dendy type) . 63
17. Sorting, enumeration, and identification equipment used in
analyzing benthic samples 66
18. Location map for the Brule and Menominee Rivers, Wiscon-
sin-Michigan 79
19. Populations of selected benthic organisms in the Brule River,
1963 80
20. Sampling station location map for the Menominee River . ... 81
21. Bottom organism populations—Jron Mountain-Kingsford
area, Menominee River, August 1963 82
22. Comparison of bottom organism populations in two upper
Menominee River reservoir 83
23. Populations of bottom associated organisms, lower Menomi-
nee River, August 1963 84
24. Kinds of bottom organisms, Blackstone River, August 1964 . 86
25. Numbers of pollution-tolerant bottom organisms per square
foot, Blackstone River, August 1964 87
26. Wisconsin River profile with mileage designations, pollution
sources, and sampling stations 88
27. Wisconsin River dilution chart 89
28. Wisconsin River bottom fauna—March data 91
29. Biotic conditions in the Wisconsin River during August 92
30. Populations of bottom animals, South Platte River, Denver
Metropolitan Area, May 1964 94
31. Species of bottom fauna per station, East Pearl River, 1962 . 95
32. Location map and sampling stations on Coosa River system,
Alabama-Georgia 97
33. Total suspended solids in tons/day in Coosa River system . . 99
34. Population of stream bed associated organisms in Coosa River
system, 1963 100
35. Algal population, light transmission and silt deposits, Coosa
River system, Alabama-Georgia 101
36. Genera and population numbers of bottom animals per
square foot in Potomac River, September 1952 104
37. Bear River and tributaries drainage system 105
38. Benthos data. Bear River, 1962 106
39. Dissolved oxygen in the Chattooga River showing the per-
centage D.O. below 4 mg/i, August 1962 110
40. Stream bed animal population in Chattooga River, Ga., Au-
gust 1962 111
41. Effects of industrial wastes on genera of organisms in Mahon-
ing River, 1952 113
42. Numbers of stream bed animals, Mahoning-Beaver Rivers,
January 1965 115

43. Kinds of stream bed animals, Mahoning-Beaver Rivers, Janu-
ary 1965 116
44. Phytoplankton in Mahoning-Beaver Rivers, January 1965 ... 118
45. Numbers of pollution-tolerant organisms, per square foot,
Ten Mile River, August 1964 119
46. Acid mine discharges kill natural stream bed organisms 122
47. Water quality analyses of stream samples inside a 40-ft mo-
bile laboratory 123
48. Euglena niutabilis, showing two to three heavy chioropiastids,
conspicuous stigma, small rod-like paramylum bodies, and
apparent absence of flagellum 125
49. Streams v thin the Monongahela River Basin 126
50. Stream bed organisms, Monongahela River system, 1963 . .. . 127
51. Relative ratios of circle diameters to circle areas 128
52. Stream bed animal data, Cheat River, 1963 129
53. Planktonie algal data, Monongahela River system, 1963 . . . . 130
54. Sampling station locations on tributary streams, Lake Sebasti-
cook, Maine 145
55. Sampling station locations on Lake Sebasticook, Maine 146
56. Vertical temperature and dissolved oxygen curves, Lake Se- 149
basticook, Maine 151
57. Chlorophyll entering Lake Sebasticook, July 29, 1965 155
58. Lake Tahoe chlorophyll a values 156
59. Lake Michigan sludgeworm populations, number per square
meter 158
60. Lake Michigan phytoplankton populations, number per ruilli- 162
liter 166
61. Sampling stations on San Diego Bay. California 168
62. Biological sampling stations. Charleston Harbor 169
63. Stations locations in Boston Harbor and tributaries 171
64. Number of po lychaete worms per square foot, Boston Harbor
and tributaries 190
65. Average number of phytoplankton (number/mi) in Boston
Harbor 191
66. Seasonal turbidity unit values. Geist Reservoir, 1963—64 .. . 194
67. Vertical temperature, dissolved oxygen, and percent light,
Geist Reservoir, md 202
68. Concentration of Plytoplankton (ppm), Geist Reservoir,
1963—64 203
69. Municipal stabilization ponds in the United States—1962 .. . 205
70. Reported stabilization ponds used by industry in the United
States—1962 207
71. Algae commonly found in sewage waste stabilization ponds . . 208

72. Phytoplankton standing crops in Wisconsin stabilization
ponds May 1957, to August 1958 . 207
73. Diagram of sewage stabilization in ponds influenced by cli-
mate in northern Wisconsin 208
74. Massive slime accumulation on commercial fisherman’s net . . 211
75. Slimes form waving masses in polluted streams that destroy
the habitat for animals, as well as the aesthetics of the wa-
terway 213
76. Dried wastes from pulp and paper making operations 215
77. Generalized contour distribution of basic plant types on the
shore line of a main-river reservoir 231
78. Anopheles quadrirnaculatus Say production potentials of ba-
sic plant types 233
79. Interim Canal, California. with Asiatic Clams completely cov-
ering canal bed 235
80. Closeup of undisturbed canal bed, Interim Canal, California,
with multitudes of Asiatic Clams 236
81. Mechanical weed cutting and removal 240
82. Chemical dosage chart 241
83. Equipment design for algal control 243
84. Liquid spray distribution of chemical by small boat 244
85. Helicopter application of a granular herbicide 247
86. Analytical scheme for differentiation of phosphorus forms . . . 273
I. Organism Associations 13
2. Pounds of Phosphorus Contributed to Aquatic Ecosystems . . 36
3. Phosphorus Discharged by Selected North American Streams 37
4. Conversion Table for Membrane Filter Technique 70
5. Distribution of Recognized Species of Plants and Animals
Occurring at or Below pH 3.9 125
6. Radium 226 in Animas River Samples 133
7. Carbon, Nitrogen, and Phosphorus in Freshwater Environ-
mental Constituents 138
8. Total to Soluble Phosphorus Ratios in Water 142
9. Lake Nutrient Loadings and Retentions 143
10. Nutrient and Algal Quantities in Lake Sebasticook. Maine,
1965 150
11. Organic Carbon. Nitrogen. and Phosphorus in Sediments
Lake Sebasticook, 1965 1 52
12. Diatom Remains in Lake Sebasticook Sediments 152

13. Odors, Tastes, and Tongue Sensations Associated with Algae
in Water 177
14. Plants That Constitute Over 1 Percent of the Total Game
Duck Food 227
15. Herbicides That Have Been Registered in Accordance With
the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act for
Use in Aquatic Sites 248

WATER: A necessity for life
A transporter of disease
A sustainer of navigation
A coolant, cleanser, diluent
A medium for recreational pursuits
A resource with food for populations
A power source to harness and control
A source of tranquil, aesthetic enjoyment
A refuge for biological pests and nuisances
A defiled purveyor of civilization ’s wastes
Water means different things to different people. A particular definition
depends in large measure on the personal uses to which water is put by
the definer, in this book the concern is not so much with specific water
uses as it is with water quality and aquatic life, and the investigation of it.
A section in the National Technical Advisory Committee on Water
Ouality publication (Anon., 1968) states that, “It is not surprising that
water has occupied an important position in the concerns of man. The
fate of tribes and nations, cities and civilizations has been determined by
drought and flood, by abundance or scarcity of water since the earliest
days of mankind.”
From the days of the earliest investigator it has been known that each
water supports its particular life forms. As early as 1918 Henry Baldwin
Ward wrote:
“From the tiniest rivulet to the mightiest river one may find every
possible intermediate stage, and between the swiftest mountain tor-
rent and the most sluggish lowland stream there exists every interme-
diate gradation. Biologically considered, the torrent imposes on the
development of life within its waters evident mechanical limitations
which are not present in the slow-flowing streams. Ordinarily the

biological wealth of a stream varies inversely with its rate of flow,
and anything which stops or checks the flow makes conditions more
favorable for the development of life, flowing waters are thinly in-
habited and also present considerable difficulties to the student;
hence they are relatively unexplored territory.
“Taken together lakes compose one-half the fresh water on the
surface of the globe. They present an infinite variety of physical fea-
tures in rocky, sandy, swampy margins, in steep and shallow shores,
in regular and broken contours with no islands or many, with shal-
low water or depth that carry the bottom far below the level of the
“They vary in the chemical character of the soil in the lake basin
as well as in their banks and bed, in the degree of exposure to wind
and sunshine, in the relative inflow and outflow in ratio to their vol-
ume, in. their altitude as well as in geographic location. All of these
and many other factors modify and control the types of living things
and their abundance in the waters.” (Ward and Whipple, 1918).
To continue the description of water quality in embellished terms,
Mark Twain many years ago eulogized Lake Tahoe in this everlasting
“In the early morning one watches the silent battle of dawn and
darkness on the waters of Tahoe with a placid interest but when the
shadows skulk away and one by one the hidden beauties of the shore
unfold themselves in the full splendor of noon: When the smooth
surface is belted like a rainbow with broad bars of blue and green
and white, half the distance from circumference to center, when in
the lazy summer afternoon, he lies in a boat far out to where the
dead blue of the deep water begins and smokes the pipe of peace
and idly winks at the distant crags and patches of snow from under
his cap brim: When the boat drifts shoreward to the white water,
and he tolls over the gunwale and gazes by the hour down through
the crystal depths arid notes the color of the pebbles and reviews the
tinny armies gliding in procession a hundred feet below: When at
night he sees moon and stars, mountain ridges feathered with pines,
jutting white capes, bold promontories, grand sweeps of rugged sce-
nery topped with bald glimmering peaks, all magnifIciently pictured
in the polished mirror of the lake, in richest, softest detail the tran-
quil interest that was born with the morning deepens and deepens
by sure degrees, till it culminates at last in resistless fascination.”
Water quality affects man in his direct use of the water; it affects also
the aquatic life that the water contains. Considering the tatter, Shelford
‘From “Lake Tahoe Water Qual ity Control Policy,” June 1966, prepa red by
State of California, The Resources Agency, Lahontan Regional Water Quality Con-
trol Board.

I 11ö) cnose to pnrase tnese aspects as conuitions 01 existence. He
stated that conditions of existence are of importance only insofar as they
affect the life and death processes of organisms. Earlier. Forbes (1887)
noted the complexity and interrelationship of organism community studies
in water quality explorations with the words, “If one chooses to become
acquainted with the black bass . . he will learn but little if he limits
himself to that species.” Forbes further called attention to the close corn-
munitv of interest that exists among species with the reasoning that to ex-
ist a species birth rate must at le ist equal its death rate and that when a
species is preyed upon by another it must produce regularly an excess of
individuals for this destruction. Forbes went on to say that on the other
hand the dependent species must not appropriate. on the average, any
more than the excess of individuals upon which it preys. He argued that
the common interest among species was promoted by the process of natu-
ral selection.
Figure 1. Lake Tahoe: A Jewel of the West

Aquatic biology, the subject of this discussion, is only one of many dis-
ciplines involved in water quality investigations. Other disciplines include
chemistry, microbiology, engineering. hydrology, and geology.
The early chronicle of published biological effort began with Hassall in
1850 (1850, 1856) who noted the value of microscopic examination of
water for the understanding of water problems! Sedgwick (1888) applied
biological methods to water supply problems. Under his leadership the
Massachusetts State Board of Health was the first agency in the United
States to establish a systematic biological examination of water supplies.
In 1889. Sedgwick collaborated with George W. Rafter to develop the
Sedgwick-Rafter method of counting plankton. \Vhipple (1899) produced
a treatise that, in 1948. was in its fourth edition and fifth printing; it has
served through the years as an often-used reference in the water supply
and water pollution field.
One of the first practical applications of biological data to the biologi-
cal definition of water pollution was contained in the “saprobien system”
of Kolkwitz and Marsson (1908. 1909). This system, based on a check
list detailing the responses of many plants and animals to organic wastes,
has been used extensively to indicate the degree of pollution at a given
site. That the sound basic judgment of these early investigators has with-
stood the passage of time is shown by the frequent references currently
made to their works.
The survey of the Illinois River by the Illinois Natural History Survey
was one of the first studies that demonstrated clearly the biological effects
of organic pollution; these studies were presented in a series of papers that
provided much impetus and professional status to biological stream inves-
tigations in the United States (Forbes and Richardson. 1913. 1919:
Forbes, 1928). Richardson (1921) described changes that had occurred
in the bottom fauna of the Illinois River since 19 1 3 resulting from in-
creased movement of sewage pollution southward. Later, Richardson
(1928) noted that”. . . the number of small bottom-dwelling species of
the fresh waters of our distribution area that can be safely regarded as
having even a fairly dependable individual index value in the present
connection is surprisingly small: and even those few have been found in
Illinois to be reliable as index species only when used with the greatest
caution and when checking with other indicators.”
Purdy (1916) demonstrated the value of certain organisms to indicate
areas of pollution in the Potomac River receiving sewage discharges! The
shallow flats of the Potomac River were found to be of great importance
in the natural purification of organic wastes; sunlight and turbidity were
observed to be prominent factors in the determination of oxygen levels
and in waste purification processes. Weston and Turner (1917), Butter-
field (1929). and Butterfield and Purdy (193 1) reported other studies
that demonstrated the effects of organic enrichment on streams, the sud-

den change in the biota after the introduction of the waste, and the pro-
gressive recovery of the biota downstream as the wastes were utilized.
Butcher (1932, 1940) studied the algae of rivers in England and noted
that attached algal forms gave the most reliable indication of the suit-
ability of the environment of an area for the support of aquatic life. In the
United States, Lackey (1939. 1941a, 1942) investigated planktonic algae
and noted their response to various pollutants. The work of Ellis (1937)
on the detection and measurement of stream pollution, the effects of var-
ious wastes on stream environments, and the toxicity of various materials
to fishes has served as a reference handbook and toxicity guide through
many years.
Cognizance has been taken of the biotic community and the effect of
pollution on the ecological relationships of aquatic organisms (Brinley,
1942; Bartsch, 1948). Bartsch and Churchill (1949) depicted the biotic
response to stream pollution and related stream biota to zones of degrada-
tion, active decomposition, recovery, and clean water. Patrick (1949) de-
scribed a healthy stream reach as one in which “ . . . the biodynamic cy-
cle is such that conditions are maintained which are capable of supporting
a great variety of organisms.” a semihealthy reach as one in which the
ecology is somewhat disrupted but not destroyed, a polluted reach as one
in which the balamce of life is upset, and a very polluted reach as one
that is definitely toxic to plant and animal life. Patrick separated the biota
into seven groups and illustrated specific group response to stream condi-
tions with bar graphs. The number of species was used rather than the
number of individuals. Fjerdingstad (1950) published an extensive list
placing various algae and diatoms in zones or in ranges of stream zones
similar to those of Kolkwitz and Marsson.
Epoch making water quality legislation in the Water Quality Act of
1965 that amended the Federal Water Pollution Control Act provided for
the establishment of water quality standards for interstate (including
coastal) waters.
Paragraph 3, section 10. of the Act reads as follows:
“Standards of quality established pursuant to this subsection shall
be such as to protect the public health or welfare, enhance the
quality of water and serve the purposes of this Act. In establishing
such standards the Secretary. the Hearing Board, or the appropraite
state authority shall take into consideration their use and value for
public water supplies, propagation of fish and wildlife, recreational
purposes, and agricultural, industrial, and other legitimate uses.”
Subsequent to this legislation the Federal Water Pollution Control Ad-
ministration issued guidelines for establishing water quality standards for
interstate waters. These policy guidelines included such statements as
“Water quality standards should be designed to ‘enhance the quality of
water.’ . . . No standards of water quality will be approved which pro-

vide for the use of any stream or portion thereof for the sole or principal
purpose of transporting wastes . . . Numerical values should be stated
for such quality characteristics where such values are available and applic-
able. Where appropriate, biological bioassay parameters may be used. In
the absence of appropriate numerical values or biological parameters, cri-
teria should Consist of verbal descriptions in sufficient detail as to show
clearly the quality of water intended.”
On February 27, 1967, the Secretary of the interior established the first
National Technical Advisory Committee on Water Quality Criteria to the
Federal Water Pollution Control Administration. The Comrnitte&s princi-
pal function was to collect in one volume a basic foundation of water
quality criteria. A smaller but equally important function was to develop a
report on research needs. In its published report the Committee recog-
nized that there is an urgent need for data collection from systematic sur-
veillance of waters and waste sources and for an expanded research effort
(Anon.. 1968). Systematic surveillance was defined as “. . traditional
sanitary surveys broadened to include aesthetic qualities . . .“. The Com-
mittee’s Report also underscored the relative value assigned to recrea-
tional use by the Act with statements that “. . . recreational uses of waters
in the United States have historically occupied an inferior position in
practice and law relative to other uses.” but that today there is a growing
realization that recreation is a full partner in water use; one that, with
associated services, represents a multimillion dollar industry with sub-
stantial prospects for future growth, as well as an important source of
psychic and physical relaxation. Water quality research needs including
those assigned to fish, other aquatic life, and wildlife have been defined
in a 1968 report of the National Technical Advisory Committee.
What, then, is a defined role of the field investigative water pollution
biologist? Basically it seems apparent that the role of individuals working
in this discipline is to:
1. Determine water quality compliance with established standards, and.
determine the effectiveness of established standards to meet the
needs of an enhanced water quality.
2. Identify, define, and interpret the effects on aquatic organisms of
water quality changes that result from pollution.
3. Project these effects on man and man’s use of the water.
4. Predict environmental conditions that might prevail, and beneficial
water uses that would result, when pollution that can now be con-
trolled is abated or alleviated, wholly or in some degree.
5. Determine impact of water quality on those important biotic com-
munity segments that are either harvestable directly by man or are
essential to support more advanced levels of life within the aquatic
6. Contribute to existing knowledge of the cause and control of pest
and other nuisance aquatic organism populations.

QUATIC environments are as numerous as the very waters themselves.
Rising in snowcapped mountains small streams collect the snow melt
and transport it to the plains. As these streams meander through the
countryside they take from the lands that which is released to them. Small
streams soon form larger ones that eventually join to form the great rivers
and these in turn terminate in coastal estuaries. Each change in size and
shape forms a habitat that becomes unique and supports an assemblage of
organisms that is adapted to life in that particular environment. Reser-
voirs, built by man on rivers, in turn form a particular habitat that is in-
fluenced greatly by the reservoir’s morphometric features. The reservoir in
turn may influence the downstream environement because of the depth of
the penstock that releases water of lower temperature, or of less dissolved
oxygen, or of higher mineral quality, than the waters that receive it. The
landscape is dotted with ponds and with many larger lakes of varying
‘sizes and shapes. Each, as Professor Forbes pointed out many years ago,
is a microcosm that supports its own organism community. The Great
Lakes are at the pinnacle of lake environments within the United States,
and because of their vast size, depths, and currents they offer many en-
vironments within their confines.
Organisms that may be found in great numbers in the stream environ-
ments are often not adapted to life within the lake or reservoir environ-
ments and vice versa. There are many features that tend to make a partic-
ular aquatic environement suitable or unsuitable, completely or to some
degree, to a particular organism or group of closely associated organism.
Common to all aquatic environments would be the changes brought
about by differences among the water habitats. For the pond and lake
group these may include:
Altitude Area
Latitude Mean depth

Maximum depth Average outflow
Area of different Detention time
depth zones Water level
Volume of different fluctuation
depth strata
Length of shoreline Number of islands
Littoral slope Island areas
Drainage area Island shoreline length
Runoff rate Penstock depth (reservoirs).
Average inflow
Features that create particular aquatic environments in flowing water
may include:
Altitude Drainage area to
Latitude collection site
Relative extent of Runoff rate
pools and riffles Physical composition
Depth at of stream bed
collection site Physical nature of
Width at surrounding terrain
collection site Area geology.
Velocity of flow
The estuarine environment is influenced by morphometric features that
are common to both the flowing water and static environments. In addi-
tion it is influenced by tidal cycics and their fluctuations.
Life in waters is influenced also by water temperatures, dissolved oxy-
gen. pH. color, turbidities, total dissolved solids, total alkalinity, nutrients
and mineral composition. Maximum values, and in some cases minimal
values also, of these constituents often create an environment that be-
comes intolerable to particular organisms and will limit their production
or interfere subtly with physiological processes that in turn reduce their
ability to compete with others within the environment.
Pollutional Effects
Effects of pollution assume many characteristics and an infinitesimal
variaton in degree when pollution enters the aquatic environment. The
specific environmental and ecological responses to a pollutant will depend
largely on the volume and strength of the waste and the volume of water
receiving it. As a basic introduction, five types of responses will be de-
scribed in subsequent paragraphs, and within each of these response types
there can be many changes in magnitude and degree.
The classic response that has often been described in the literature is
the effects of organic wastes that may be discharged from sewage treat-
ment plants and certain industries. As these wastes enter the water they

create turbidity, decrease light penetration. and may settle to the bottom
in substantial quantity to form sludge beds. The wastes are attacked im-
mediately by bacteria and this process of decomposition consumes
oxygen from the water and liberates essential nutrients that in turn stimu-
late the production of some forms of aquatic life.
Pollutional Zones
Upstream from the introduction of organic wastes, classic description
details a clean water zone or one that is not affected by pollutants. At the
point of waste discharge and for a short distance downstream there is
formed a zone of degradation where wastes become mixed with the re-
ceiving waters, and where the initial attack is made on the waste by bacte-
ria and other organisms in the process of decomposition.
Following the zone of degradation there is a zone of active decomposi-
tion that may extend for miles, or days of stream flow, depending in large
measure on the volume of dilution that is afforded the waste by the
stream, and the temperature of the water. The biological processes that
occur within this zone are similar in many respects to those that occur in
a “typical” sewage treatment plant. Within this zone, waste products are
decomposed and those products that are not settled as sludge are assim-
ilated by organisms in life processes.
A zone of recovery follows the zone of active decomposition. The re-
covery zone is essentially a stream reach in which water quality is grad-
Figure 2. Pollutional Zones

ually returned to that which existed prior to the entrance of pollutants.
Water quality recovery is accomplished through physical, chemical, and
biological interactions within the aquatic environment. The zone of recov-
ery may extend also for many miles arid its extent will depend principally
upon morphometric features of the waterway.
Finally the zone of recovery will terminate in another zone of clean wa-
ter or area unaffected by pollution that is similar in physical, chemical,
and biological features to that which existed upstream from the pollution
Organic Wastes
The classic description of the effects of organic wastes on the receiving
stream often becomes confused in a specific stream investigation, because
additional sources of pollution may enter the environment before the re-
ceiving water has been able to assimilate the entire effects of an initial
source. When this occurs the effects of subsequent introductions become
superimposed on those of the initial source and the total effect may con-
fine large reaches of stream to a particular zonal classification.
Effects of organic wastes in the static water environment, as opposed to
the flowing water environment, are modified principally by the morpho-
metric features of the receiving water. Zonal changes that have been de-
scribed for flowing water do exist but may be compressed in great
measure either laterally or vertically when the discharge is to a lake or es-
wary. Such compression may tend to decrease the severity of pollution
that is often observed in the flowing water environment and, on the other
hand, may increase substantially the development of biotic nuisances such
as algae or rooted aquatic plants that may develop from the nutrients re-
leased with and decomposed from the introduced organic materials.
Organism communities that may be related to pollution principally are
those that are by nature associated with the bed or bottom of the water-
way; those that attach themselves to objects such as rocks, aquatic plants.
brush or debris submerged within the water; those that are essentially free
floating and are transported by currents and wind, such as plankton and
other microscopic forms; and those motile free swimming organisms such
as fish. Considering each of these common organism groups, a number of
observations can be made on their reaction to the introduction of organic
wastes to a flowing stream.
Upstream from the waste source such limiting factors as food and in-
tense competition among organisms and among organism groups. preda-
tion, and available habitat for a particular species will limit organism pop-
ulations to those that can be sustained by the particular environment.
Most often the limiting factor will be available food. Within this popula-
tion, however, there will exist a great number of organism species. Thus,
the old biological axiom for an environment unaffected by pollution is one

that supports a great number of species with the total population delimited
largely by food supply.
Following the introduction of organic wastes, conditions of existence
for many organisms become substantially degraded. Increased turbidity in
the water will reduce light penetration that in turn will reduce the volume
of water capable of supporting photosynthesizing plants. Particulate mat-
ter in settling will flocculate small floating animals and plants from the
water. As the material settles, sludge beds are formed on the stream bed
and many of the areas that formerly could have been inhabited by bottom
associated organisms become covered and uninhabitable.
The zone of degradation is a transition area between the clean water
unaffected reach and a zone of decomposition of organic wastes. In such.
the dissolved oxygen may be diminished but not completely removed.
Sludge deposits may be initiated but are not formed in maximum magni-
tude or extent. Conditions of existence become impaired and typically
there is a reduction in both the organism population and the number of
species that can tolerate this environment.
Within the zone of active decomposition conditions of existence for
aquatic life are at their worst. The breakdown of organic products by bac-
teria may have consumed available dissolved oxygen. Sludge deposits may
have covered the stream bed thus eliminating dwelling areas for the ma-
jority of bottom associated organisms that could be found on an un-
affected area. Fish spawning areas have been eliminated, but perhaps fish
are no longer present because of diminished dissolved oxygen and sub-
stantially reduced available food. Here, aquatic plants will not be found
in large numbers because they cannot survive on the soft shifting blanket
of sludge. Turbidity may be high and floating plants and animals destroyed.
Water color may be substantially affected. When organic materials are de-
composed a seemingly inexhaustible food supply is liberated for those
particular organisms that are adapted to use this food source. Thus, bac-
terial and certain protozoan populations may increase to extremely high
levels. Those bottom associated organisms such as sludgeworms. blood-
worms, and other worm-like animals may also increase to tremendous
numbers because they are adapted to burrowing within the sludge, deriv-
ing their food therefrom, and existing on sources and amounts of oxygen
that may be essentially nondetectable by conventional field investigative
methods. Within the zone of active decomposition the organism species
that can tolerate the environment are reduced to extremely low levels.
Under some conditions those bottom associated animals that are visible to
the unaided eye may be completely eliminated. Because of the tremen-
dous quantity of food that is available to those organisms that are adapted
to use it, the numbers of individuals of the surviving species may. indeed.
be great. For example, it may be possible to find 50,000 sludgeworms or
more living within each square foot of bottom area with the above-de-
scribed conditions.
I i

The zone of recovery is essentially the downstream transition zone be-
tween the zone of active decomposition and an environment that is unaf-
fected by pollution. This zone features a gradual cleaning up of the
environment, a reduction in those features that form adverse conditions
for aquatic life, an increase in organism species. and a gradual decrease in
organism population because of decreased food supply and the presence
of some of the predators that are less sensitive individually to pollutional
Be iu e of some variation in response among species to conditions of
existance within the environment, and because of inherent difficulties in
aquatic invertebrate taxonomy. the ecological evaluation of the total orga-
nism community is the acceptable approach in water pollution control in-
vestigations. At the present time. investi zators tend to place organism in
broad groups according to the general group response to pollutants in the
environment. As we are able to advance our knowledge and determine
more specifically the water quality requirements of identifiable species, the
Figure 3. SIudgeworm eggs with embryos.

use of specific organism indicators may become more prevalent in biologi-
cal interpretation. The general group known as “sludge-worms,” for ex-
ample, is found in both the unpolluted, as well as the organically polluted
environment. Its value as a group lies in the fact that the numbers of indi-
viduals within the group is exceedingly low in unpolluted water, whereas
in the organically polluted environment its numbers may be very high. Ex-
amples of organisms that may inhabit both the unpolluted and polluted en-
vironments are presented in table 1.
The converse of the effects of pollution on organisms is the effects of
organisms on pollutants. Organic wastes, especially, supply food which in
turn produces an abundance of a few types of organisms greater than that
produced in an unpolluted environment. In consuming organic wastes, the
organisms stabilize the waste in a given number of feet or miles of hori-
zontal stream in a manner similar to that in a vertical trickling filter that
is designed especially for maximum stabilizing efficiency by the organisms.
Purdy (1930) found long ago that sludgeworms eat continuously. Ob-
servations during 21 out of 24 hours showed no perceptible decrease in
the foraging activity. Evacuation of a string of fecal pellets about 68
inches in length in a 24-hour period was recorded for each worm. An
incubation of 24 hours showed an oxygen demand of 2.8 mg/I. by these
pellets, whereas the original mud beneath the surface showed a demand
of 6.7 mg./1. Purdy’s conclusion was that the large surface area of fecal
pellets exposed to the flowing water possessed a far greater purification
Table 1. Organism Associations
Clean water association
Polluted water association
Protozoa . -
Algae ..,.,,.. Cladophora (green)
Ulothrix (green)
Navicula (diatom)
Protozoa Trachelomonas
Insects Plecoptera (stoneflies in
Negaloptera (hel lgrammites,
alderflies, and fishflies
in general)
Trichoptera (caddistlies in
Ephemeroptera (mayflies in
Elmidae (riffle beetles in
clams Unionidae (pearl bufton)
Fish ” Etheostoma (darter)
Notropis (shiner)
Chrosomus (dace)
Iron Bacteria Sphaerotilus
Fungi Leptomitus
Algae Ch lorella (green)
Chiamydomonas (green)
Oscillatoria (blue- green)
Phormidium (bluegreen)
Stigeoclonium (green)
Carchesium (stalked
colonial ciliate)
Co lpidium (non-colonial
Segmented Tubifex (sludgeworms)
Worms . . . . Limnodrilus (sludge-
Leeches Helobdella stagnalis
Insects Culex pipiens
Chironomus (-Tendipes)
plumosus (bloodworms)
Tubifera (Eristalis
tenax) (rat-tailed
Snail Physa integra
clam Sphaerium (fingernail)
Fish t Cyprinus carpio (carp)
* Names from: American Fisheries Society Special Publication No. 2, “A List
of Common and Scientific Names of Fishes from the United States and Canada”
(Second Edition) Ann Arbor, Mich. (1960), 102 pp.

\A - ..
/ \
7, .
. .
- —
10 <

7 ,
Figure 4. Representatives of stream bed associated animals (The clean
water (sensitive) group).
From left:
Stonefly nymph
Mayfly naiad; Caddisfly larvae; Hellgrammite
Unionid Clam
potential than did the same mass of material an inch or more beneath the
sludge-water interface.
As organic wastes become more stabilized, other organism types pre-
dominate within the aquatic animal community. Midge larvae have been

- -- .

- L’

— . -
Figure 5. Representatives of stream bed associated animals
(The intermediately tolerant group).
From left
Scud; Sowbug; Blackfly larvae
Fingernail Clam
Snail; Dragonfly nymph; Leech
Damselfly nymph
found to “paint” the stream bed a brilliant red with their undulating bod-
ies. Caddisfly larval populations greater than 1.000 per square foot of
stream bed or mayfly nymphs numbering more than 300 per square foot
have been found on several occasions.

5 --—.--- ,— —, ------- . - .-<.--
‘ r

Figure 6. Representatives of stre bed associated animals
(The very toleran. group).
From Bloodworm or midge larvae
Sludgeworm; Rat-tailed maggot
Sewage fly larvae; Sewage fly pupae
The estuarine and marine cnvironments have not been studied as exten-
si’e as the fresh-water habitats. Rcish (1960) cited Wilhelm (1916) to
the effect that the polychaete Capiiella capitaza (Fabricius) plays a role
in marine waters similar to that of the oligochaete, Tubifex, in fresh ‘ ater.

Filice (1954) and Reish (1960) found three benthic zones surrounding a
major pollutional discharge: one essentially lacking in animals, an inter-
mediate zone having a diminished fauna, and an outer zone unaffected by
the discharge. Filice (1959) found the crab Rhithropanopeus harrisii
(Gould) present more abundantly than expected near industrial outf ails:
this crab and Capirella capitata (Fabricius) were present in large num-
bers near domestic outfalls. Hedgpeth (1957) reviewed the biological as-
pects of the estuarine and marine environments.
Inorganic Silts
The general effect on the aquatic environment of inorganic silts is to re-
duce severely both the kinds of organisms present and their populations.
As particulate matter settles to the bottom it can blanket the substrate
and form undesirable physical environments for organisms that would
normally occupy such a habitat. Erosion silts alter aquatic environments
chiefly by screening out light, by changing heat radiation, by blanketing
the stream bottom and destroying living spaces, and by retaining organic
materials and other substances that can create unfavorable conditions.
Developing eggs of fish and other organisms may be smothered by depos-
its of silt; fish feeding may be hampered. Direct injury to fully developed
fish, however, by nontoxic suspended matter occurs only when concentra-
tions are higher than those commonly found in natural water or associ-
ated with pollution.
Toxic Metals
Wastes containing concentrations of heavy metals, either individually or
in combination, may be toxic to aquatic organisms and, thus, have a se-
vere impact on the water community. A severely toxic substance will
eliminate aquatic biota until dilution, dissipation, or volatilization reduces
the concentration below the toxic threshold. Less generally toxic materials
will reduce the aquatic biota, except those species that are able to tolerate
the observed concentration of the toxicant. Because toxic materials offer
no increased food supply. such as has been discussed for organic wastes,
there is no sharp increase in the population of those organisms that may
tolerate a specific concentration. The bioassay is an important tool in the
investigation of these wastes, because the results from such a study indi-
cate the degree of hazard to aquatic life of particular discharges; interpre-
tations and recommendations can be made from these studies concerning
the level of discharge that can be tolerated by the receiving aquatic com-


I C —
Figure 7. Poflutional Effects on Animals
raME Of F lOW
V 1
ST& -rs

TEMPERATURE is a prime regulator of natural processes within the
water environment. It governs physiological functions in organisms
and, acting directly or indirectly in combination with other water quality
constituents, it affects aquatic life with each change. These effects include
chemical reaction rates, enzymatic functions, molecular movements, mo-
lecular exchanges between membranes, etc., within and between the phys-
iological systems and organs of an animal. Because of the complex inter-
actions involved, and often because of the lack of specific knowledge or
facts, temperature effects as they pertain to an animal or plant are most
efficiently assessed on the basis of net influence on the organism. Depend-
ing on the extent of environmental temperature change, organisms can be
activated, depressed, restricted, or killed.
Temperature determines those aquatic species that may be present; it
controls spawning and the hatching of young, regulates their activity and
stimulates or suppresses their growth and development: it can attract and
kill when the water becomes heated or chilled too suddenly. Colder water
generally suppresses development: warmer water generally accelerates
Temperature regulates molecular movement and thus largely deter-
mines the rate of metabolism and activity of all organisms, both those
with a relatively constant body temperature and those whose body tem-
perature is identical to, or follows closely, the environmental temperature.
Because of its capacity to determine metabolic rate, temperature may be
the most important single environmental entity to life and life processes.
Variations in temperature of streams, lakes, estuaries, and oceans are
normal results of climatic and geologic phenomena. Waters that support
* Taken from comments presented by Mackenthun, K. M. and L. E. Keup before
the 1969 meeting of the American Power Conference sponsored by the Il linois In-
stitute of Technology, Chicago, 111.

some form of aquatic life other than bacteria or viruses range in tempera-
ture from 26.6° F. in polar sea waters to 185° F. in thermal springs.
Most aquatic organisms tolerate only those temperature changes that oc-
cur within a narrow range to which they are adapted, whether it be high,
intermediate, or low on this temperature scale.
Within the same species, the effects of a given temperature may differ
in separate populations, in various life cycle stages, or between the sexes,
and such effects may depend on the temperature history of the individual
tested, as well as on present or past effects of other environmental factors.
Freshwater has the greatest density at 38° F.; higher and lower temper-
atures result in waters with lower density. Seasonally induced temperature
changes are greatest in the midlatitudes.
In lakes, insolation warms the surface waters in spring, reducing their
densities compared to the deeper waters until eventually the density dif-
ferences are sufficient to prevent the wind from mixing the body of water;
thermal stratification then occurs. The warm upper layer (epilimnion) is
well mixed to a depth determined by wave and other wind induced cur-
rents. The cool bottom waters (hypolimnion) become stagnant except for
minor currents confined to this strata. A strata of sudden temperature
changes (thermocline) separates these regions. In autumn, the lake ra-
diates heat, surface temperatures decrease, surface water density increases,
and water viscosity increases. Soon the wind, aided by reduced density
differences between water layers. mixes the surface with the bottom wa-
ters resulting in a homogenous water mass. Depending on altitude and
local climatic conditions, the lake continues to mix until the following
spring in latitudes of less than about 40°. In latitudes north of about 40°,
winter surface water temperatures are less than 38° F. and these are su-
perimposed over the water mass until they are cooled to freezing. An ice
cover eliminates wind induced mixing and stagnation occurs.
Thermal stratification in reservoirs may assume many patterns depend-
ing on geographical location, climatological conditions, depth, surface
area, and type of dam structure, penstock locations, and hydropower use.
In general, large, deep impoundments will cool downstream waters in the
summer and warm them in winter when withdrawal ports arc deep; shal-
low, unstratified impoundments with large surface areas will warm down-
stream waters in the summer; water drawn from the surface of a reservoir
will warm downstream waters; a reduction in normal flow downstream
from an impoundment will cause marked warming in summer; and “run-
of-river” impoundments, where the surface area has not been increased
markedly over the normal river area, will produce only small changes in
downstream water temperatures.
In the deep, stagnant, summer bottom waters, as well as in ice covered
waters, atmospheric reaeration is absent and oxygen from photosynthesis
by plants is limited. Decomposing organisms (especially those settling to
the bottom waters in summer) remove oxygen from the water and the

gaseous byproducts of decomposition are trapped. Undesirable soluble
phosphorus, carbon dioxide, iron, and manganese concentrations increase
in these stagnant waters. Designed thermal discharges can reduce some of
these problems. Ice cover can be limited, thus allowing wind and ther-
mally induced currents to reduce winter stagnation. A deepwater summer
discharge could warm hypolimnetic waters to decrease density and permit
total water mass mixing where a cold water fishery would not be damaged
by such action.
Stratification may occur in streams receiving heated effluents. There are
three recognized forms of stream stratification: overflow, interfiow, and
underfiow; the forms are determined by the relationship between the den-
sity of the influent and the density of the stream water.
Surface freshwaters in the United States vary from 32° to over 1000 F.
according to the latitude, altitude, season, time of day, duration of flow,
depth, and many other variables. Agents affecting natural water tempera-
ture are so numerous that no two water bodies, even in the same latitude,
are likely to have the same thermal characteristics. Fish and other aquatic
life occurring naturally in each body of water are those that have become
adapted to the temperature conditions existing there. The interrela-
tionships of species, length of daylight and water temperature are so inti-
mate that even a small change in temperature may have far-reaching ef-
fects. An insect nymph in an artifically warmed stream, for example,
might emerge for its mating flight too early in the spring and be immobi-
lized by the cold air temperature, or a fish might hatch too early in the
spring to find its natural food organisms because the food chain depends
ultimately on plants, and these in turn, upon length of daylight, as well as
temperature. The inhabitants of a water body that seldom becomes
warmer than 70° F. are placed under stress, if not killed outright, by
90° F. water. Even at 75° to 80° F., they may be unable to compete
successfully with organisms for which 75° to 80° F. is favorable. Sim-
ilarly, the inhabitants of warmer waters are at a competitive disadvantage
in cool water.
An animal’s occurrence in a given habitat does not mean that it can
tolerate the seasonal temperature extremes of that habitat at one time.
The habitat must be cooled gradually in the fall if the animal is to become
acclimatized to the cold water of winter, and warmed gradually in the
spring if it is to withstand summer heat.
Some organisms might endure a temperature of 920 to 950 F. for a
few hours, but not for days. Gradual change of water temperature with
the season is important for other reasons: an increasing or decreasing
temperature often “triggers” spawning, metamorphosis, and migration.
The eggs of some freshwater organisms must be chilled before they will
hatch properly.
The temperature range tolerated by many species is narrow during very
early development; it increases somewhat during maturity, and decreases

I )
Figure 8. Fontana Project, Tennessee Valley Authority

again in the old adult. Similarly, the tolerable temperature range is often
more restrictive during the reproductive period that at other times during
maturity. Upper lethal temperatures may be lower for animals from cold
water than for closely related species from warm water. Many motile or-
ganisms such as fish, some zooplankton, certain algae, and some associ-
ated animals can avoid critical temperatures by vertical and horizontal
migration into more suitable areas. However, some organisms may be at-
tracted to areas with critical temperatures, and, upon arrival, succumb.
Changes in fish populations can result from many types of artificial
cooling and heating of natural waters. These changes result from the dis-
charge of condenser cooling water from thermal electric generating plants.
industrial waste cooling waters, and other heated effluents, and irrigation
waters. Streams are warmed also by the sun when the shade from stream
bank trees and other vegetation is eliminated. The discharge of cold water
from stratified impoundments may provide an ideal habitat for trout and
other cold water fish, when sufficient dissolved oxygen is present, but not
for the warm water fish that inhabited the stream before impoundment.
For every 18° F. increase in temperature. the chemical reaction rate is
approximately doubled in an organism or in an environment. Life proc-
esses in the water are accelerated with temperature increases and slowed
as the water cools.
The solubility of gases. including oxygen. in water varies inversely with
temperature. In fresh water, the soluhility of atmospheric oxygen is de-
creased by about 55 percent as the temperature rises from 32° to 104° F.
under I atmosphere of pressure (760 mm. Hg -). Because all desirable
living things are dependent on oxygen in one form or another to maintain
the life processes that produce energy for growth and reproduction, dis-
solved oxygen is of imposing significance in the aquatic environment.
When organism metabolism increases because of higher temperatures,
organism development is speeded. and more dissolved oxygen is required
to maintain existence. But, bacterial action in the natural purification
process to break down organic materials is also accelerated with increased
temperatures, thus reducing the oxygen that could be available in the
warmer water. When organisms use larger amounts of oxygen, and when
oxygen has been reduced by temperature action and interaction, orga-
nisms may perish. Life stages that are especially vulnerable are the eggs
and larvae. At higher temperatures. phytoplankton have been found to
need greater amounts of certain growth factors such as vitamin B 12 . Be-
tween 96.8° and 98.2° F., for example, the vitamin requirement has been
found to increase over 300 times for some species.
Fish and other motile organisms seek a preferred temperature at which
they can best survive, which is several degrees below a temperature that is
lethal. Larger individuals tend to move out of areas that are too hot, but
larvae and juveniles cannot often move fast enough to avoid a sudden
temperature increase. Large fish and fish in schools avoid heated areas in

summer but may be attracted to such areas in winter. This phenomenon
may result in good fishing during the cooler months, but an absence of
this sport at other times.
Reproduction cycles may be changed significantly by increased temper-
ature because this function takes place under restricted temperature
ranges. Spawning may not occur at all because temperatures are too high.
Thus, a fish population may exist in a heated area only by continued im-
migration. Disregarding the decreased reproductive potential, water tem-
peratures need not reach lethal levels to wipe out a species. Temperatures
that favor competitors, predators, parasites, and disease can destroy a
species at levels far below those that are lethal.
Fish food organisms are altered severely when temperatures approach
or exceed 900 F. Predominant algal species change, primary production is
decreased, and bottom associated organisms may be depleted or altered
drastically in numbers and distribution. Increased water temperatures may
cause aquatic plant nuisances when other environmental factors are favor-
able .
Synergistic actions of pollutants are more severe at higher water tem-
peratures. Given amounts of domestic sewage, refinery wastes, oils, tars,
insecticides, detergents, and fertilizers more rapidly deplete oxygen in wa-
ter at higher temperatures, and the respective toxicities are likewise in-
The National Technical Advisory Committee on Water Quality Criteria
(Anon., 1968), composed in part of the nation’s leading fishery experts,
recommended that to maintain a well-rounded population of warm water
fishes, heat added to a freshwater stream not exceed that which would
raise the water temperature more then 50 F. at the expected minimum
daily flow for the month involved. In lakes, the temperature of the upper
waters should not be raised more than 30 F. above that which existed be-
fore heat was added. The increase should be based on the monthly aver-
age of the maximum daily temperatures. Temperature should be measured
in those areas where important organisms are most likely to be affected
The Committee recommended provisional maximum temperatures as
compatible with the well-being of various fish species and their associated
biota as follows:
93° F.: Growth of catfish, gar, white or yellow bass, spotted bass, buf-
falo, carpsucker, threadfin shad, and gizzard shad.
90° F.: Growth of largemouth bass, drum, bluegill, and crappie.
84° F.: Growth of pike, perch, walleye, smal lmouth bass, and sauger.
80° F.: Spawning and egg development of catfish, buffalo. threadfin
shad, and gizzard shad.
750 F.: Spawning and egg development of largemouth bass, white and
yellow bass and spotted bass.

68° F.: Growth or migration routes of salmonids and for egg develop-
ment of perch and smailmouth bass.
550 F.: Spawning and egg development of salmon and trout (other
than lake trout).
48° F.: Spawning and egg development of lake trout, walleye, north-
em pike, and sauger.
Because of the large number of trout and salmon waters that have been
destroyed, made marginal or nonproductive, remaining trout and salmon
waters must be protected if these resources are to be preserved. The Com-
mittee further recommended that inland trout streams, headwaters of
salmon streams, trout and salmon lakes and the deeper waters of lakes
that contain salmonids not be warmed. No heated effluents should be dis-
charged in the vicinity of spawning areas.
Little work has been done regarding thermal addition effects in sub-
tropical estuarine ecosystems. In the subtropical environment, optimum
temperatures for many forms are only a few degrees lower than maximum
lethal temperatures. Organisms may be existing under stress with natural-
ly occurring summer temperatures. Great care should be exercised to pre-
vent harmful temperature increases.
In general, marine water temperatures do not change as rapidly or
range as widely as those of freshwaters. Marine and cstuarine fishes,
therefore, are less tolerant of temperature variation. Although this limited
tolerance is greater in the estuarine than in the open water marine species,
temperature changes are more important to those fishes in estuaries and
bays than to those in open marine areas.
Marine surf-zone discharge from large-scale coastal power plants may
be expected to significantly alter the shore environment for species of in-
vertebrates and fish that are commonly found there.
Some investigators have becomed alarmed over the loss in organisms
contained in the water pumped across condensers and through a generat-
ing plant. These are subject to thermal shock, physical damage, and
perhaps commercial additives. These organisms include phytopl ankton,
crustaceans. zooplankton. and shellfish larvae, such as clams and oysters
that have stages of drift in the water column for a few weeks before they
settle to the bottom. Studies have shown a 95 percent mortality of these
organisms when they are subjected to the rise in temperature in crossing
the condenser.
Available data indicate that commercial and key food-chain estuarine
animals cannot tolerate temperatures greater than approximately 90° F.
regardless of the temperature to which they have been acclimated , Thus,
natural peak summer water temperatures in a subtropical or tropical es-
tuary may be near the tolerance threshold for a number of desirable ma-
rine organisms.
In subtropical waters, organisms that find the environment undesirable

are not replaced by organisms of greater temperature tolerance, as so of-
ten happens in northern latitudes.
The National Technical Advisory Committee on \Vater Quality Crite-
ria, in reporting to the Secretary of the Interior, recommended that the
discharge of any heated materials into coastal waters be closely managed.
This Committee stipulated that any rise owing to such discharges should
be restricted to 1.5° F. during the critical summer months, outside of es-
tablished mixing zones. To make water quality standards more meaning-
ful, mixing zones must have definition. The National Technical Advisory
Committee suggested only that adequate passageways be provided at all
times for the movement or drift of organisms, and that mixing areas must
not be used for, or considered as, a substitute for waste treatment, or as
an extension of, or substitute for, a waste treatment facility.
Dissolved Oxygen
Dissolved oxygen (D.O.) is a water quality constituent that, in appro-
priate concentrations, is essential not only to keep organisms living but
also to sustain species reproduction, vigor, and the development of popu-
lations. Organisms undergo stress at reduced D.O. concentrations that
make them less competitive to sustain their species within the aquatic en-
vironment. For example. D.O. concentrations around 3 milligrams per li-
ter (mg/I) or less have been shown to interfere with fish populations
through delayed hatching of eggs (Silver et al., 1963), reduced size and
vigor of embryos (Silver et al., 1963; Van Horn and Baleh, 1957), pro-
duction of monstrosities in young (Alderdiee et al., 1958), interference
with food digestion and acceleration of blood clotting (Bouck & Ball,
1965). decreased tolerance to certain toxicants (Cairns and Scheier.
1957), reduced food efficiency and growth rate (Chiba, 1966; Herrman
et aL, 1962), and reduced maximum sustained swimming speed (Davis et
al., 1963).
Oxygen enters the water by absorption directly from the atmosphere or
by plant photosynthesis, and is removed by respiration of organisms and
by decomposition. That derived from the atmosphere may be by direct
diffusion or by surface water agitation by wind and waves, which may
also release dissolved oxygen under conditions of supersaturation.
In photosynthesis, aquatic plants utilize carbon dioxide and liberate dis-
solved and free-gaseous oxygen at times of supersaturation. Since energy
is required in the form of light, photosynthesis is limited to the photic zone
were light is sufficient to facilitate this process. According to Dice
(1952), • . . the ultimate limit of productivity of a given ecosystem is
governed by the total effective solar energy falling annually on the area,
by the efficiency with which the plants in the ecosystem are able to trans-
form this energy into organic compounds, and by those physical factors of
the environment which affect the rate of photosynthesis.” Verduin (1956)
summarized the literature on primary production in lakes; based on corn-

putaflons of photosynthetic oxygen production, he found that the yields of
several lakes were mostly between 42 and 57 pounds of dissolved oxygen
per acre per day. A year-round study under completely natural conditions
in western Lake Erie showed winter yields of about 11 pounds of dis-
solved oxygen production per acre per day. and summer maxima of about
85 pounds per acre per day. The annual oxygen production curve closely
followed the solar radiation curve. The net oxygen production rate for
Last Okoboji Lake in Iowa, a producer of large plankton populations,
was 79 pounds per acre per day, with production largely confined to the
first 2 meters (Weber, 1958). Vhipple et al. (1948) noted that supersat-
uration in the upper waters is not cumulative to a great extent because
circulation is maintained by wind action and convection currents both of
which promote contact of the water and the air with a consequent loss of
oxygen. Higher saturation is frequently found in the upper region of the
thermocline in infertile oligotrophic lakes. Wind action seldom disturbs
the waters of this zone. convection currents are absent, and diffusion is a
slow process. Plants find an abundant supply of carbon dioxide and suffi-
cient light in this area to stimulate photosynthesis. resulting in supersatu-
ration values that may exceed 300 percent.
During respiration and decomposition, animals and plants consume dis-
solved oxygen and liberate carbon dioxide at all depths where they occur.
Because excreted and secreted products and dead animals and plants sink,
most of the decomposition takes place in the hypolimnion; thus, during
lake stratification there is a gradual decrease of dissolved oxygen in this
zone. After the dissolved oxygen is depleted, anaerobic decomposition
continues with evolution of methane and hydrogen sulfide.
In the epilimnion. during thermal stratification. dissolved oxygen is
usually abundant and is supplied by atmospheric aeration and photosyn-
thesis. Phytoplankton are plentiful in fertile lakes and are responsible for
most of the photosynthetic oxygen. The thermoeline is a transition zone
from the standpoint of dissolved oxygen. as well as temperature. The wa-
ter rapidly cools in this region. incident light is much reduced, and photo-
synthesis is usually decreased; if sufficient dissolved oxygen is present,
some cold water fish abound. As dead organisms that sink into the hypo-
limnion decompose, oxygen is utilized; consequently. the hypolimnion in
fertile lakes may become devoid of dissolved oxygen following a spring
overturn, and this zone may be unavailable to fish and most benthic inver-
tebrates at this time. During the two brief periods in spring and fall when
lake water circulates, temperature and dissolved oxygen are the same
from top to bottom and fish can use the entire water depth.
The National Technical Advisory Committee (Anon., 1968) recom-
mended that D.O. concentrations be above 5 mg/i assuming normal sea-
sonal and daily variations for a diversified warm water biota. The Com-
mittee stated that under extreme conditions concentrations may range
between 5 and 4 mg I for short periods during any 24-hour period, pro-

viding that the water quality is favorable in all other respects. For cold
water biota, it is desirable that D.O. concentrations be at or near satura-
tion especially in spawning areas. D.O. levels in the hypolimnion of lakes
should not be lowered below 6 mg/I at any time because of the addition of
oxygen demanding wastes. The Committee further specified that D.O.
concentrations in surface coastal waters should be greater than 5.0 mg/I,
except when upwellings and other phenomena may cause this value to be
depressed. D.O. concentrations in estuaries and tidal tributaries should
not be less than 4.0 mg/I at any time or place, except in naturally dys-
trophic waters or where natural conditions cause D.O. to be depressed.
The world’s literature on pH published prior to about 1950 has been
critically evaluated by Doudoroff and Katz (1950). They concluded that
under otherwise favorable conditions, pH values above 5.0 and
ranging upward to pH 9.0, at least, are not lethal for most fully developed
freshwater fishes. Much more extreme pH values, perhaps below 4.0 and
well above 10.0. also can be tolerated indefinitely by resistant species.
However, regardless of the nature of acid or alkaline wastes responsible.
such extreme conditions, associated with industrial pollution. are evidently
undesirable and hazardous for fish life in waters which are not naturally
so acid or alkaline.”
Lloyd (1968) summarized the conclusions of the European Inland
Fisheries Advisory Commission, Food and Agricultural Organization of
the United Nations, with the statement:
“There is no definite pH range within which a fishery is unharmed
and outside which it is damaged, but rather there is a gradual deteri-
oration as the pH values are further removed from the normal range.
The pH range which is not directly lethal to fish is 5—9; however, the
toxicity of several common pollutants is markedly affected by pH
changes within this range; and increasing acidity or alkalinity may
make these poisons more toxic. Also, an acid discharge may liberate
sufficient carbon dioxide from bicarbonate in the water either to be
directly toxic, or to cause the pH range 5—6 to become lethal.
“Below a pH value of 5.0 fish mortalities may be expected, al-
though some species may become acclimated to values as low as 3.7.
However, the productivity of the aquatic ecosystem is considerably
reduced below a pH value of 5.0, so that the yield from a fishery
would also become less. Some acid waters may contain precipitated
ferric hydroxide which may also act as a lethal factor.”
The National Technical Advisory Committee (Anon., 1968) recom-
mended for fish and other aquatic life that:
(1) No highly dissociated materials should be added in quantities suf-
ficient to lower the pH below 6.0 or to raise the pH above 9.0.

(2) To protect the carbonate system and thus the productivity of the
water, acid should not be added in sufficient quantity to lower the
total alkalinity to less than 20 mg/I.
(3) The addition of weakly dissociated acids and alkalies should be
regulated in terms of their own toxicities as established by bioas-
say procedures.
Ned et al. (1961), in studying raw-sewage stabilization ponds, found
that p1-I values above 8.0 are produced by a photosynthetic rate that de-
mands more carbon dioxide than the quantities furnished by respiration
and decomposition; pH levels below 8.0 indicate failure of photosynthesis
to utilize completely the amounts of carbon dioxide so produced. “In gen-
eral practice, pH values above 8.0 are assumed to denote the presence of
carbonate; a level of 8.0 indicates bicarbonate alone; and values below
8.0 show the occurrence of free carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide, usually
produced by decomposition and respiration, will react with any carbonate
present to form bicarbonate and water. Photosynthesis by aquatic plants
utilizes carbon dioxide, removing it from bicarbonate and producing car-
bonate when no free CO exists. Carbonates of calcium and magnesium
are but weakly soluble and quantities of them leave solution. Decomposi-
tion and/or respiration thus tends to reduce pH and increase bicarbonates,
whereas the tendency of photosynthesis is to raise pH and reduce bicar-
bonate” (Neel et al.. 1963).
Rooted, suspended, and floating aquatic plants require light for photo-
synthesis. Light penetration into waters is exceedingly variable in different
lakes. Clarke (1939) pointed out that the diminution of the intensity of
light in its passage through water follows a definite mathematical formula.
The relationship between the depth of water and the amount of light pen-
etrating to that depth can be plotted as a straight line on semilogarithmic
paper. Even the clearest waters impede the passage of light to some ex-
tent; light passed through 100 meters of distilled water is reduced to I or
2 percent of its incident value.
The principal factors affecting the depth of light penetration in natural
waters include suspended microscopic plants and animals, suspended min-
eral particles such as mineral silt, stains that impart a color, detergent
foams, dense mats of floating and suspended debris or a combination of
these. The region in which light intensity is adequate for photosynthesis is
often referred to as the trophogenic zone, the layer that encompasses 99
percent of the incident light. The depth of the trophogenic zone may vary
from less than 5 to greater than 90 feet.
The length of daylight in water varies inversely with the depth of the
water. The seasonal variation in the intensity of solar radiation influences
the potential rate of photosynthesis. In winter the presence of ice with an

over layer of snow further limits the amount of relatively poor incident
light energy that reaches the water. The work of Birge. reported by Neess
and Bunge (1957). indicates that the absorptive quality of clear ice is
very similar to that of water, although the addition of air bubbles or parti-
culate matter reduces the transmission of light. Snow further reduces light
penetration through ice. Greenbank (1945) found 84 percent light trans-
mission through 7½ inches of very clear ice, and 22 percent through
7½ inches of vet-v cloudy ice. A 1-inch snow cover permitted only 7 per-
cent light transmission through the ice and snow; 2 inches of snow per-
mitted only 1 percent light transmission. Bartsch and Allum (1957),
studying sewage stabilization ponds. found that in the absence of snow 20
to 55 percent of the incident light passed through 10 to 12 inches of ice.
whereas, with a I- to 3- inch snow cover 93 to 99 percent of the incident
light was absorbed by ice and snow, when the ice was 1 to 2 feet thick.
Mackenthun and McNabb (1961) found less than 1 percent of light pass-
ing through 16 inches of ice covered by 2 inches of snow.
Beeton (1958) made 57 paired photometer and Secchi disc measure-
ments at 1 8 stations in Saginaw Bay in Lake Huron. He found that the
average percentage transmission of surface light intensity, at the Secchi
disc depth. was 14.7 percent. Verduin (1956) made simultaneous deter-
minations with the Secchi disc and submarine photometer during August,
1955. on Lake Erie. The Secchi disc readings in meters were plotted
against the depth associated with 1 percent of the surface light. A line
drawn by inspection through the scatter diagram, suggests that an approx-
imate estiniation of the depth of the euphotic zone can be obtained by
multiplying the Sccchi disc readings by 5. Riley (1941) used a factor of
3. Verduin (1956) computed a factor of 2.5 using the data of Bursche
(1955). Rawson (1950) listed a factor of 4.3 for a Secchi disc reading of
about 1 meter.
Tyler (1968). after extensive experimentation, concluded that Seechi
disc readings could be used to plot the depth of the euphotic zone for a
particular body of water provided that calibrations had been made against
a photometer for that particular water. Tyler further concluded that if
modern instruments were available for measuring precise light penetra-
tion, that it would probably be better not to undertake such a calibration.
The maximum Secchi disc reading reported for Lake Tahoe, Califor-
nia-Nevada. was 136 feet at one station on April 4, 1962 (McGauhey et
al.. 1963). A minimum Secchi disc reading of 49 feet was recorded in
Emerald Bay of Lake Tahoe on May 21. 1962. In contrast, the Secchi
disc disappeared in 3 feet in Lake Sebasticook, Maine, during a July.
1965. study. In areas with less dense algal growths. the readings were in-
creased to 8 feet. Beeton (1965) records the average Secchi disc depth
for Lake Superior as 32.5 feet; Lake Michigan , 19.6 feet; and Lake Erie.
14.6 feet.

The velocity of water movement is extremely important to aquatic or-
ganisms in a number of ways including the transport of nutrients and or-
ganic food past those organisms attached to stationary surfaces; the trans-
port of plankton and benthos as drift, which in turn serve as food for
higher organisms; and the addition of oxygen to the water through surface
aeration. Silts are moved downstream and sediments may be transported
as bed load. These in turn are often associated with major nutrients, such
as nitrogen and phosphorus, which may be released at some point down-
stream from their introduction.
The determination of flow is necessary to compute pounds of materials
passing a given point. Computations are often made on pounds of nitro-
gen, phosphorus, or other elements of concern, on amounts of plankton
and benthos as drift, on amounts of pollutants, such as wool, fibers, or
other microscopical identifiable materials that may be associated with a
point source.
Flow determines those species of stream bed organisms that may be
present in a particular stream reach. Some of these, such as the black fly
larva, require fast water. Others, such as the immature forms of caddis-
flies and mayflies. will develop to large populations in more sluggish wa-
ter. Among many invertebrate genera there are those particular species
that are adapted for life not only under the two extremes of flow but also
under its many variations.
The deposition of sediments in streams can and often does destroy in-
sect and mussel populations. Ellis (1931), in studying the Mississippi.
Tennessee. and Ohio Rivers, reported that erosion silts had destroyed a
large portion of the mussel population in various streams by directly
smothering the animals in localities where a thick deposit of mud was
formed, and by smothering young mussels even where the adults could
maintain themselves. Ziebell (1957) reported a marked reduction in or-
ganisms 100 yards downstream from the discharge of a gravel washing
operation entering the South Fork Chehalis River in Washington. Ziebell
and Knox (1957) investigated the effects of yet another gravel washing
operation on the Wynooche River in Washington. The results of bottom
samples collected downstream from the operation revealed reductions of
75 to 85 percent at distances exceeding I mile. Silt from a gravel washing
plant located on Cold Creek and the Truckee River. Calif. reduced bottom
organisms over 75 percent for a distance of more than 10 miles down-
stream (Cordone and Pennoyer. 1960). Reports published by the Oregon
State Game Commission summarized the results of extensive collections
of bottom organisms upstream and downstream from gold dredge opera-
tions on the Powder River (Anon.. 1 955). During siltation, production of

fish food organisms decreased to nearly zero in the zone of heaviest pollu-
tion and the effect of siltation extended for a distance of 20 miles. In
about 1 year after the dredge closed operations, the silt was flushed from
the pools and riffles by freshets and bottom organisms increased 8 to 10
fold in weight per unit of bottom area.
Few data are available regarding the direct harm of sediments to fish.
In most cases indirect damage to the fish population through destruction
of the food supply, eggs, or changes in the habitat probably occur long
before adult fish are harmed directly. Ellis (1944) stated that particulate
matter of a hardness greater than one, if held in suspension by current ac-
tion or otherwise, will injure the gills and other delicate exposed struc-
tures of fishes, mollusks, and insects when the particles are large enough.
Kemp (1949) stated that mud or silt in suspension will clog or cut the
gills of many fish and mollusks, and he considered 3,000 p.p.m. dangerous
when maintained for a period of 10 days. Wallen (1951) conducted con-
trolled aquarium investigations on the direct effects of turbidity on warm
water fishes; he found that observable behavioral reactions that appeared
as a turbidity effect did not develop until concentrations of turbidity
neared 20,000 p.p.m. and in one species reactions did not appear until
turbidities reached 100,000 parts per million (p.p.m.).
The effects of silt upon fish eggs and the developing fry has received
greater attention. Stuart (1953) concluded that silt is not very dangerous
in the normal streams if excess occurs only at intervals; however, the
character of such normal streams can be drastically altered by allowing
the washings of quarries, gravel pits, and mines to flow into the streams
untreated. in many cases the quantities allowed to enter the stream may
be small and the materials in suspension may in itself be of a nontoxic
character, but cont.inous application of small quantities over the reeds
may by much more detrimental to the welfare of very young fish than
sudden flushes of large quantities. Others who have noted the detrimental
effects of silt upon the eggs and developing fry of fish include Campbell
(1954), Snyder (1959), and Shapovalov and Berrian (1940). Shapova-
by and Taft (1954) in discussing mining silt concluded that from a
practical standpoint the damage to spawning beds would occur when min-
ing silt enters a stream at times other than storm periods when the water
velocity is insufficient to carry the sediment in suspension.
Turbidity reduces the enjoyment of fishing and may limit fishing suc-
cess. This effect has been determined in expressable data for Fork Lake in
Illinois where it was found that the fish caught per man-hour decreased
from 6.53 to 2.04 when the transparency in feet as measured by the Sec-
c i ii disc was likewise reduced from an average of 4.0 to 1.3 (Bennett,
Thompson, and Parr . 1940).
Buck (1956) in a study of 39 farm ponds. rotenoned and then stocked
with iargemouth bass and bluegill or largemouth bass and redear sunfish
were classified into clear ponds-turbidities less than 25 p.p.m., intermedi-

ate ponds-turbidities from 25 to 100 p.p.m., and muddy ponds-turbidities
in excess of 100 p.p.m. At the end of two seasons, the average total
weight of all fish in clear ponds was about 1 .7 times greater than in inter-
mediate ponds and 5.5 times greater than in muddy ponds. Largemouth
bass were harmed the most by turbidity in both growth and reproduction.
Average volume of net plankton in surface waters of clear ponds was 8
times greater than in intermediate ponds and 12.8 times greater than in
muddy ponds.
Sediment is believed to destroy algae by molar action, by simply cover-
ing the bottom of the stream with a blanket of silt, or by shutting off the
light needed for photosynthesis. Tarzwell and Gaufin (1953) found that
turbid waters may transport the byproducts of bacterial action on organic
wastes and the effluent of sewage treatment plants considerable distances
before they are utilized. When water clears as a result of impoundment
so that phytoplankton can grow, fertilizing materials are utilized and
may produce troublesome blooms far from the source of pollution. Cor-
fitzen (1939) found that the greatest loss in light intensity was due to
light absorption by silt with some additional loss by reflection and refrac-
Attached algae and vegetation are affected by silt principally by: (1)
Covering bottom materials with a layer of sediment, (2) reducing light
transparency and preventing light penetration, and (3) grinding algae by
action of abrasive particles. A reduction of plant food is accompanied by
a reduction in the poundage of plant feeding animals that can be support-
ed, and this in turn limits the production of carnivorous animals including
The European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission, Food and Agri-
cultural Organization of the United Nations, prepared water quality crite-
ria on finely divided solids (Anon., 1965). With respect to chemically
inert solids and to waters that are otherwise satisfactory for the mainte-
nance of freshwater fishes they made the following conclusions:
“(a) There is no evidence that concentrations of suspended solids
less than 25 p.p.m. have any harmful effects on fisheries.
(b) It should usually be possible to maintain good or moderate
fisheries in waters which normally contain 25 to 80 p.p.m. suspended
solids. Other factors being equal. however, the yield of fish from
such waters might be somewhat lower than from those in category
(c) Waters normally containing from 80 to 400 p.p.m. suspended
solids are unlikely to support good freshwater fisheries, although fish-
eries may sometimes be found at the lower concentrations within this
(d) At the best, only poor fisheries are likely to be found in wa-
ters which normally contain more than 400 p.p.m. suspended sol-

“In addition although several thousand p.p.m. solids may not kill fish
during several hours or days exposure, such temporary high concentra-
dons should be prevented in rivers where good fisheries are to be main-
tained. The spawning grounds of salmon and trout require special consid-
eration and should be kept as free as possible from finely divided solids.”
McKee (1956) in summarizing the effects of oil substances on aquatic
life in freshwater, stated that:
“(1) free oil and emulsions may coat and destroy algae and other
(2) heavy coatings of free oil on the surface may interfere with the
natural processes of reaeration and photosynthesis, while light
coatings would be less detrimental because wave action and
other turbulence would maintain adequate reaeration; and
(3) water soluble principles may exert a direct toxic action.”
The deleterious effect of crude oil and lubricating oils on fish is due to a
film formed over the gill filaments of fish, which prevents the exchange of
gasses and results in suffocation (Klinke, 1962).
The effects of oils on marine animals may include the tainting of fish
and shellfish flesh, poisoning by ingestion of oil or soluble fractions, such
as phenol, ammonia, and sulfides, disturbances of marine food chains,
physical fouling of animals with heavy coats of oil, and repellent effects
(Hawkes. 1961).
Many thousands of waterfowl have been destroyed by the effects of oil
pollution. This wasteful loss has deprived nature lovers, waterfowl hunt-
ers, and bird watchers of immeasurable enjoyment. The destruction of
many duck species, such as the canvasback, redhead, and scaups, comes
at a critical period for these species that are fighting for survival against
the forces of nature. in future years additional waterfowl will be de-
stroyed if oil dumping is continued, especially in late winter. In this mod-
em age of technical development, the discharge of oil into a river system
indicates man’s lack of responsibility for the preservation of our natural
Erickson (1965) pointed out that the effects of oil on birds depend
upon a variety of factors including the type of oil, extent of contamination
of plumage, temperature of the air and water, and the quantity of oil in-
gested. He found that migratory birds are affected indirectly by deposits of
oil on the bottom, in shallow water, or along the shore that reduces the
available food supply of both plants and animals. Elements within the
food chain are eliminated by chemical or physical properties of the oils
and food for waterfowl may become unavailable by being overlayed or
embedded in the oily materials. Accumulation of petroleum sludge may
also prevent germination and growth of plants and the production of in-
vertebrates important as food, either by smothering or by toxic effects.

Oil causes matting of the duck feathers so that ducks become water-
logged, lose their ability to fly and drown if they cannot get out of the wa-
ter soon enough. It breaks down the insulating power of the feathers;
body heat and stored reserves of energy are rapidly lost. Diving ducks
may starve, and, following the preening of oil from contaminated feathers,
bleeding ulcers may be produced in the digestive tract causing mortality.
Major Nutrients
Eutrophication is a term meaning enrichment of waters by nutrients
through either man-created or natural means. Present knowledge indicates
that the fertilizing elements most responsible for lake eutrophication are
phosphorus and nitrogen. Iron and certain “trace” elements are also im-
portant. Sewage and sewage effluents contain a generous amount of those
nutrients necessary for algal development.
Lake eutrophication results in an increase in algal and weed nuisances
and an increase in midge larvae, whose adult stage has plagued man in
Clear Lake, Calif., Lake Winnebago, Wis.. and several lakes in florida.
Dense algal growths form surface water scums and algal-littered beaches.
Water may become foul-smelling. Filter-clogging problems at municipal
water installations can result from abundant suspended algae. Vhen algal
cells die, oxygen is used in decomposition, and fish kills have resulted.
Rapid decomposition of dense algal scums, with associated organisms and
debris, gives rise to odors and hydrogen sulfide gas that creates strong cit-
izen disapproval; the gas often stains the white lead paint on residences
adjacent to the shore.
Nitrogen and phosphorus are necessary components of an environment
in which excessive aquatic growths arise. Algal growth is influenced by
many varied factors: vitamins, trace metals, hormones. auxins, cxtracellu-
lar metabolites, autointoxicants. viruses and predation and grazing by
aquatic animals. Several vitamins in small quantities are requisite to
growth in certain species of algae. In a freshwater environment, algal re-
quirements are met by vitamins supplied in soil runoff, lake and stream
bed sediments, solutes in the water, and metabolites produced by actino-
mycetes fungi, bacteria, and several algae.
Evidence indicates that: (1) High phosphorus concentrations are asso-
elated with accelerated eutrophication of waters, when other growth pro-
moting factors are present; (2) aquatic plant problems develop in
reservoirs or other standing waters at phosphorus values lower than those
critical in flowing streams; (3) reservoirs and other standing waters col-
lect phosphates from influent streams and store a portion of these within
consolidated sediments; and (4) phosphorus concentrations critical to
noxious plant growths vary, and they produce such growths in one geo-
graphical area, but not in another. Potential contributions of phosphorus
to the aquatic environment have been indicated in the literature (table 2).
Keup (1968) in flowing water studies found that phosphorus is tempo-

rarily stored in bottom sediments or transported as a portion of the
stream’s bed-load after its removal from the flowing water. Long-term
storage is affected when the phosphorus is pooled in deltas or deposited
on flood plains. Keup reviewed the literature on phosphorus discharges by
specific streams (table 3).
Once nutrients are combined within the ecosystem of the receiving wa-
ters, their removal is tedious and expensive; removal must be compared to
inflowing quantities to evaluate accomplishment. In a lake, reservoir, or
pond, phosphorus is removed naturally only by outflow, by insects that
hatch and fly out of the drainage basin, by harvesting a crop, such as fish,
and by combination with consolidated bottom sediments. Even should ad-
equate harvesting methods be available, the expected standing crop of al-
gae per acre exceeds 2 tons and contains only about 1.5 lbs of phospho-
rus. Similarly, submerged aquatic plants could approach at least 7
tons/acre (wet weight) and contain 3.2 lbs/acre of phosphorus. Probably
only half of the standing crop of submerged aquatic plants can be consid-
ered harvestable. The harvestable fish population (500 lbs.) from 3 acres
of water would contain only 1 lb. of phosphorus.
Dredging has often been suggested as a means of removing the store-
house of nutrients contained within the lake bed sediments. These sedi-
ments are usually rich in nitrogen and phosphorus, for they represent the
accumulation of years of settled organic materials. Some of these nutrients
are recirculated within the water mass and furnish food for a new crop of
organic growth.
Hasler (1957) found that, in an undisturbed mud-water system, the
percentage of nutrients, as well as the amount of phosphorus that is re-
leased to the superimposed water, is very small. In laboratory experi-
ments, when P is placed at various depths in the mud, the diffusion into
the overlying noncirculating water is negligible, if the phosphorus is
Table 2. Pounds of Phosphorus Contributed to Aquatic Ecosystems
Major Contributors:
Sewage and Sewage Effluents: 3 lbs. per capita per year. 4
Some industries. e.g., potato processing: 1.7 lb. per ton processed.
Phosphate rock from 23 States (Mackenthun and Ingram, 1967).
Cultivated agricultural drainage: 0.35-0.39 lb. per acre drained per year (Engel-
brecht and Morgan, 1961) (Sawyer ,1947) (Weibel, 1965).
Surface irrigation returns, Yakima River Basin: 0.9—3.9 lbs. per acre per year (Syl-
vester, 1961).
Benthic Sediment Releases.
Minor Contributors:
Domestic duck: 0.9 lb. per year (Sanderson, 1953).
Sawdust: 0.9 lb. per ton (Donahue, 1961).
Rainwater. 44
Groundwater, Wis.: 1 lb. per 9 million gals. (Juday and Birge, 1931).
Wild duck: 0.45 lb. per year (Paloumpis and Starrett, 1960).
Tree leaves: 1.8-3.3 lb. per acre of trees per year (Chandler, 1943).
Dead_Orga nisms; animal excretions.
4 Various researchers have recorded the annual per capita contribution of phos-
phorus in pounds from domestic sewage as 2 to 4 (Bush & Mulford, 1964), 2, 3 (Mentz-
ler et al., 1958), 1.9 (Owen, 1953), and 3.5 (Sawyer, 1965).
44 lnfluenced by pollution present in atmosphere ‘washed out” by rainfall.

Principal land use
Forested West Branch Sturgeon R, Mich
Pigeon, Minn
Poplar, Minn
Baptism, Minn
St. Louis, Minn
Bois Brule, Wis
Bad, Wis
Montreal, Wis
Black, Mich
Presque Isle, Mich
Ontonagon, Mich
Yakima, Wash
Tieton, Wash
Cedar, Wash
Mulligan, Maine
Stetson, Maine
East Branch Sebasticook, Maine
Elierslie, Prince Edward Island
Pigeon, N. C
Johnathans, N. C
Kankakee, md. and III
Verrn illion, ill
Fox, Ill, and Wis
Kaskaskia, III
Streams near Madison, Wis
Du Page, Ill
Des Flames, Ill, and Wis
Above confluence with Chicago River.
Total basin (includes Chicago River).
Chicago, Ill.
Populat ion
density Reference *
Sparse. A.
Sparse. .B, C, 0.
Sparse. B, C, 0.
Sparse.. B, C, 0.
Sparse.. B, C, 0.
Sparse. A, C, 0.
Sparse.. B, C, D.
Sparse. . B, C, D.
Sparse. .B, C, D.
Sparse. .B, C, D.
Sparce. .B, C, 0.
Sparse. . E.
Sparse.. E.
Sparse. .E.
Sparse. .F.
Sparse. .F.
>63t F.
Sparse. .G.
Light. . . ,This article.
Light. . . .This article.
28... .H, I.
36... .H, I.
145... H, I.
>174.. .J.
?... K.
380.... H, I.
“i dI1IH, I.
2570.... H, I.
5650.. ..H, I.
Table 3. Phosphorus Discharged by Selected North American Streams ( from Keup, 1968 )
P —P
River Number Season of sampling Drainage (lb/annum/
of analyses area (mile t ) miie t)
27+ July 14 37
4 Aug. and Sept.... 600 28
4 Aug. and Sept 114 21
4 Aug. and Sept 140 42
4 Aug. and Sept 3430 58
4 Aug. and Sept 113 97
4 Aug. and Sept 611 78
4 Aug. and Sept 281 98
4 Aug. and Sept 202 65
4 Aug. and Sept 260 39
4 Aug. and Sept 1290 44
? Annual 182 473
? 7 months 237 492
7 Annual 125 204
12 4 seasons 21 4
19 4 seasons 29 20
56 4 seasons 56 12Sf
=44 April Dec 10 113
18 July 133 97
5 July 65 201
6 June Sept 5280 139
8 June Sept 1230 179
7 June-Sept 2570 489
100 April. Dec 5220 226
7 7 235262
5 June-Sept 325 18
5 June Sept. :1’. . . 576
19 June Sept 2180 4020
16 June- Sept 810 6540
t Data given, or computed from data in the reternces. A. Ball and Hooper (1963), B. Putnam and Olson (1959), C. Putnam and Olson (1960),
D. Anon. (1964), E. Sylvester (1961), F. Anon. (1966), G. Smith (1959), H. Hurwitz, et al. (1965), 1. Anon. (1963), J. Engelbrecht and Morgan (1961).
K. Sawyer (1947).
tOne seasonal (9 months) industry contributes approximately 75 per cent. Only sewered population known.

placed more than 1 c.m. in the mud. Application of lime to the water or
mud reduces the amount of soluble phosphorus released. Acidification of
previously alkalized mud will, upon agitation, increase the amount of
phosphorus entering solution. In an aquarium experiment, circulation of
the water above phosphorus-rich mud, with the aid of air bubbles, in-
creased the phosphorus in solution.
Zicker et al. (1956) found in laboratory experiments that the percent-
age of phosphorus released to water from radioactive superphosphate fer-
tilizer placed in an undisturbed mud-water system was very small, with
virtually no release of phosphorus from fertilizer placed at depths greater
than ¼ inch below the mud surface. Radiophosphorus placed ½ inch be-
low the mud surface showed only a very slight tendency to diffuse into the
water, while the radiophosphorus placed at a I-inch depth did not diffuse
into the water at all.
Dredging deepens an area within a lake and can be beneficial if the in-
creased depth is sufficient to prevent growth of larger nuisance plants.
Dredging uncovers yet another soil strata that will contain phosphorus in
some quantity. subject to solution in water. The newly dredged area im-
mediately begins to receive organic fallout from waters above, and forms
a new interface at which nutrient exchange is substantial. Sediments dis-
turbed during a dredging operation liberate nutrients at a rate more rapid
than sediments left undisturbed and all of these factors must be consid-
ered when recommending dredging for nutrient remosal. Based entirely
on nutrient considerations, dredging can be advantageous only when it re-
moves sediments that contain a higher concentration of nutrients than the
interface likely to be formed by fallout.
The total supply of an available nutrient depends on the total volume
of ‘cater, as well as the concentration of the element in the water. Gerbil
and Skoog (1957) in laboratory insestigations determined that 5 units of
nitrogen plus 0.08 unit of phosphorus (a ratio of 60:1) would produce
100 units of algae. The N—P ratio. as it naturally occurs in algae and sub-
merged plants, is more nearly 10:1. Allen (1955) found that to obtain
arty appreciable increase it was necessary to supplement the sewage with
nitrogen as well as carbon.
Saner (1947) studied the southeastern Wisconsin lakes and concluded
that a 0.30 mg/i concentration of inorganic nitrogen (N) and a 0.01
mg/I concentration of soluble phosphorus (P1 at the start of the active
growing season could produce nuisance algal blooms. Nitrogen appears to
be the more critical factor limiting algal production in natural waters (Ger-
loft and Skoog. 1957). since phosphorus is stored in plankton as excess
and may exceed the actual need.
Sawyer (1954) discussed factors that influence the de ebopment of
nuisance algal growths in lakes. The surface area is important since the
accumulations of algae along the shoreline of a large lake under a given
set of wind conditions could easily be much larger than on a small lake.

Figure 9. A Blue-green Algal Nuisance

under equal fertilization per acre. The shape of the lake determines to
some degree the amount of fertilizing matter the lake can assimilate with-
out algal nuisances since prevailing winds blowing along a long axis will
concentrate the algal production from a large water mass into a relatively
small area. The most offensive conditions develop during periods of very
mild breezes that tend to skim the floating algae and push them toward
shore. Shallow lakes, too, respond differently from deep stratified lakes in
which the deeper waters are sealed off by a thermocline. in the nonstrati-
fled waters all the nutrients dissolved in the water are potentially available
to support an algal bloom. In stratified waters, only the nutrients confined
to the epilimnion are available except during those brief periods when
complete circulation occurs.
Lund (1965) in his thorough literature review stated that “Nitrogen
and phosphorus can still be considered as two of the major elements limit-
ing primary production. In some tropical and highly eutrophic temperate
lakes. nitrogen may be a more important limiting factor than phosphorus.
in many other lakes phosphorus is present in very low concentrations and
seems to be the major factor limiting production. Evidence from the addi-
tion of fertilizers to fish ponds and from what is known about the eutro-
phication of lakes by sewage supports the view that phosphorus plays a
major role in production.”
Chu (1943) found that optimum growth of all organisms studied in
cultures can be obtained in nitrate-nitrogen concentrations from 0.9 to 3.5
nig 1 and phosphorus concentrations from 0.09 to I .8 mg I , while a limit-
ing effect on all organisms will occur in nitrogen concentrations from 0. 1
mg I downward and in phosphorus concentrations from 0.009 mg,;l down-
ward. The lower limit of optimum range of phosphorus concentration var-
ies from about 0 .018 to about 0.09 mg I; and the upper limit from 8.9 to
17.8 mg: I when nitrate is the cource of nitrogen, while it lies at about
17.8 for all the planktons studied when animonium is the source of nitro-
gen. Low phosphorus concentrations may, therefore, like low nitrogen
concentrations, exert a selective limiting influence on a phytoplankton
population. The nitrogen concentration determines to a large extent the
amount of chlorophyll formed. Nitrogen concentrations beyond the opti-
mum range inhibit the formation of chlorophyll in green algae.
Experiments by Ketchum (1939) with the diatom P/ 1aeodacry!urn,
showed a reduction in rate of cell division when phosphate present in the
medium is less than 17 micrograms per liter (,ug, I ) P. Strickland 1965)
stated that the limiting phosphorus concentration in some cultures has
been found to be less than S pg 1. The problem is complicated because
auxiliary compounds may affect the availability of phosphate to a plant
cell. Sylvester (1961 ) found that nuisance algal blooms were observed in
Seattle ’s Green Lake (a very soft-water lake) when nitrate nitrogen (N )
levels were generally above 200 jig, I and soluble phosphorus (P) was
greater than 10 j ig/i.

MUller (1953) concluded that excessive growths of plants and algae in
polluted waters can be avoided if the concentration of nitrate nitrogen is
kept below about 0.3 mg/i and the concentration of total nitrogen is not
allowed to rise much above 0.6 mg/I.
The question is sometimes asked, how much algae can be grown from a
given amount of phosphorus? Allen (1955) found that the maximum that
could be grown in the laboratory on sewage was 1 to 2 g/i (dry weight)
and in the field in sewage oxidation ponds the maximum was 0.5 g/1.
Thus, assuming optimum growth conditions and maximum phosphate uti-
lization, the maximum algal crop that could be grown from 1 pound of
phosphorus would be 1,000 pounds of wet algae under laboratory condi-
tions or 250 pounds of wet algae under field conditions. Considering a
phosphorus (P) content of 0.7 percent, 1 pound of phosphorus could be
distributed among 1,450 pounds of algae on a wet weight basis.
A considered judgment suggests that to prevent biological nuisances,
total phosphorus should not exceed 100 g/l P at any point within the
flowing stream, nor should 50 ptg/l be exceeded where waters enter a
lake, reservoir, or other standing water body. Those waters now contain-
ing less phosphorus should not be degraded (Mackenthun, 1968). Ade-
quate phosphorus controls must now be directed toward treatment of nu-
trient point sources and to wastewater diversion around the lake or
dilution within the lake, where feasible.
It is generally conceded that abundant major nutrients in the form of
available nitrogen and phosphorus are an important and a necessary com-
ponent of an environment in which excessive aquatic growths arise. Algae,
however, are influenced by many and varied factors. Vitamins, trace
metals, hormones and auxins, extracellular metabolites, autointoxicants,
viruses, and predation and grazing by aquatic animals are factors that
stimulate or reduce algal growths. Some of these may be of equal impor-
tance to the major nutrients in influencing nuisance algal bloom produc-
Harder, in 1917, is credited with first connecting growth inhibiting
substances with algae. As early as 1931. autoinhibiting substances were
recognized (Akehurst, 1931). These papers gave rise to a common belief
that a plant can create its self-destruction through the production of
growth inhibiting substances that it cannot tolerate but which may, in
turn, stimulate other growths. Natural waters contain these active agents
that are secreted and excreted by freshwater algae. The toxicity of these
agents to other algae and bacteria and to fish varies constantly and is not
well understood in the natural aquatic environment. It has been postulat-
ed that algae secrete not just one substance but several, some antibiotic,
others stimulating. The amount secreted and the net result of the secre-

tions would be determined by the prevelence of one group of substances
over the other. Thus, sequences of algal blooms may be expected to occur
under conditions of a nutrient supply f at in excess of critical values.
In man ’s quest to reduce major nutrients enriching waters, such as ni-
trogen and phosphorus, and thereby restore such waters to a greater water
use potential without attendant algal pests, other algal population-influ-
encing factors will have a role in the ultimate success of the restoration
efforts. This role is presently neither clearly defined nor understood. It
does seem clear that the constant progression of the geologic clock cannot
be substantially altered. Despite man’s most ardent dreams, lakes now fer-
tile and abundantly productive of algae will never again attain their crys-
tal-clear, pristine appearance so well imprinted in the minds of long-time
local residents. The old-swimmin-hole lingers on in local folklore. Recent-
ly defiled waters can be improved substantially, however, by reducing or
removing the varying causes of algal productivity. By placing all known
algal population influencing factors in their proper perspective and by in-
tensifying investigative efforts directed towards the interrelationships of
factors most likely to effect population controls, knowledge and nuisance
reducing efforts will be enhanced. Lakes . reservoirs, ponds. flowing
streams, estuaries, and bays will be improved, and the using public will be
Eyster (1964) divided the elements requircd by green plants into ma-
cronutrients and micronutrients. Macronutricnts include carbon, hydro-
gen, oxygen, nitrogen. phosphorus. sulfur, potassium. magnesiuni, calcium
(except for algae where it is a micronutrient). and sodium. Micronu-
trients include iron, manganese, copper. zinc, molybdenum. vanadium,
boron, chlorine, cobalt, and silicon.
Manganese is one of the key elements in photosynthesis and man-
ganese-deficient cells have a reduced level of photosynthesis and a reduc-
tion in chlorophyll. Iron is associated with nitrogen metabolism. Anion
(1958) confirmed that chloride is a coenzyme of photosynthesis specifi-
cally concerned with oxygen evolution. Vanadium and zinc appear to be
involved in photosynthesis. Calcium and boron are involved in nitrogen
fixation. Molybdenum is necessary for nitrate utilization and nitrogen fixa-
tion. Cobalt is associated with the nutritional functions of vitamin B 12 .
Fitzgerald (1964) discussed the sequences of algal blooms that occur
under conditions of nutrient supply in sewage stabilization ponds far in
excess of those found in natural lakes. He also reviews some of the fac-
tors other than nutrition that might influence the algal population. These
factors include grazing and the production of inhibiting extracellular pro-
ducts. It is pointed out that there is evidence that an inverse relationship
frequently exists between the density of phytoplankton and zooplankton.
This might be the result of over-grazing in specific areas and a lack of
grazing in adjoining areas or it may be due to an “exclusion” effect on
zooplankton produces by extracellular plant metabolites. Gibor (1957)

has shown evidence that algae can at times pass through the zooplankton
without being affected by digestive processes.
In situations where the algae are so abundant that their control may be
required by chemical means, it appears that animal predation or attacks
by micro-organisms are not enough to cause a shift in the dominant spe-
cies. Once the dominant species is eliminated, however, other species in-
crease in numbers and become dominant. Factors thought to contribute to
species dominance include secreted or excreted inhibiting extracellular
products (Rice, 1954).
Léfevre (1964) stated that when an algal species develops extensively
in standing waters causing waterblooms. it eventually becomes intoxicated
by its own accumulated excretion products and dies. When the water is
renewed slowly, this phenomenon does not occur because the extracellular
products are constantly removed. Also, when one species of algae pre-
dominates in standing water, other species appear only sporadically and
the number of bacterial species decreases. Léfevre et al. (1952) suggested
that this phenomenon is due to antagonistic substances produced by the
prodominant species. Léfevre (1964) stated that the production of extra-
cellular active agents is conditioned by: (1) Nature of strain; (2) compo-
sition of culture medium; (3) nature and size of inoculum; (4) tempera-
ture; (5) illumination; (6) agitation of medium; (7)duration of culture;
and (8) season of the year.
Of 1 54 algal species. 56 require no vitamins and 98 species require
vitamin B 1 , thiarnin and biotin. alone or in various combination (Pro-
vasoli, 1961). Those blue-green algae not requiring B 12 employ it readily
as a cobalt source; since cobalt is generally scarse in water, even organisms
not requiring B 12 may compete for it. A great part of the vitamins in
freshwaters and in the littoral zone of the sea can be assumed to come
from any soil run-off especially during the spring floods. Muds are anoth-
er source of vitamins. A third source is the vitamins present as solutes in
Vitamins are synthesized by several organisms. chorella has been
found to produce as much as 6.3 g B 12 per 100 g. of dry algae and
Anabaena as much as 63 to 110 per 100 g. of dry algae (Brown et a !.,
1955). Burkholder (1959) studied the production of B vitamins by 344
bacteria isolated from waters and muds from Long Island Sound and
found that 27 percent of these gave off vitamins B 12 , 50 percent gave off
biotin, 60 percent thiamine, and 11 percent nicotinic acid. Sixty-five per-
cent of the actinomycetes studied were found by Burton and Lockhead
(1951) to produce vitamin B 1 1 . Robbins et al. (1950) reported that fungi
and many bacteria, isolated from the water and mud of a pond in which
Euglena blooms, produces B 12 ; they demonstrated also that these bacteria,
grown with Euglena on agar plates of a medium deprived of B 12 , diffused
sufficient vitamin to support growths of Euglena. And Robbins and Ka-

vanagh (1942) stated that the ability of a fungus to synthesize vitamins
essential for their metabolic processes may be complete, incomplete, or
Toxic Substances
Many pesticides and heavy metals are toxic to aquatic life in low con-
centrations. Many studies have related these toxici ies to specific orga-
nisms and to specific dilution waters. The toxicity of a particular substance
is dependent to a large extent on other water quality characteristics asso-
ciated with the toxicant. such as temperature, pH, alkalinity, etc. The
National Technical Advisory Committee (Anon., 1968) presented criteria
for many of these elements and compounds based upon the present state
of the art. In many instances it is necessary to determine through bioassay
the toxicity to fish or other aquatic organisms by testing the particular ef-
fluent discharged with the particular water quality that receives the dis-

SOLVING a field water quality problem involves the following principal
A. Objectives
B. Investigation
I. Study Planning
2. Data Collection
3. Sample and Data Analyses
C. Reporting
1. Data Organization and Display
2. Interpretation
3. Report Writing
a. Introduction
b. Summary
c. Conclusions
d. Recommendations
e. Predictions
f. Area Description
g. Water Uses
h. Waste Sources
Effects on Water Ouality
j. Appendix
D. Demonstrations
Careful thought should be given to the development of study objectives.
These should encompass clear, concise, positive definitions of the investi-

gation’s purpose. its scope. and its boundary limitations. Studs objectives
should be realistically oriented to the numbers. competencies and disci-
plines of investigative personnel involved, to budgetary limitations for the
study, and to the length of time allocated to the study. including final re-
port preparation. Ultimately as the study progresses and it concluded, its
success and accomplishments will be judged on the satisfaction, or degree
of satisfaction, of the objectives stated at the instigation of the project.
Study objectives become extremely important tools to guide and control
subsequent investigation, to delineate avenues of approach towards prob-
lem solving, and eventually to judge success.
A field investigation encompasses three equally important areas of ac-
tivity: study planning. data collection, and sample and data analyses.
Study planning involves a myriad of details.
First, maps of the waterway in question must be secured and points of
access noted. Tentative sampling stations should be selected from the
maps based on pc ints of access, and stream-mile designations developed
for major landmarks on the waterway and the tentatively selected sam-
Figure 10. Mobile chemical ana mlcrob4ologlcal laboratones receiving
samples near river bank.

pling stations. Development of stream mileages necessitates that the maps
be accurate and of suitable scale.
Following a “desk top” analyses of available background data and other
information related to the problem in question, a reconnaissance survey
is indicated of the reach of waterway to be studied, as well as principal
contributing pollution sources. During the reconnaissance survey a judg-
ment is reached on the potential effects on water quality of individual
waste sources, the reach or reaches of waterway that are of potentially
greatest concern in the particular investigation, and possible sampling sites
and actual points of access. A judgment should be reached on the advan-
tages and disadvantages of sampling the entire waterway by boat as op-
posed to a cartop or trailered boat that is lowered into the water from
several points of access along the waterway. Perhaps answers to the prob-
lem can be satisfactorily obtained by sampling the stream while wading
and, should this be the case, much time, effort, and expence could be
saved in so doing. Observations should be made at various points of ac-
cess on stream width, depth if ascertainable, nature and type of stream
bed, relative flow, as well as any other morphometric features that would
seem to contribute towards a better organized sampling procedure when
samples are collected. It is extremely important to know where boats and
other equipment may be lowered into the waterway and possible difficul-
ties that may be encountered when this is done. It is equally important to
ascertain that proportion of the samples that may be collected by wading
or by some means other than by boat. Observations should be made that
may later relate to the use of such gear as conventional biological sam-
pling dredges. square foot stream samplers. and various types of fish nets
or seines. During the reconnaissance survey contacts can be made with lo-
cal officials or local investigators who may be encouraged to participate in
some manner with the investigation. Arrangements should be made with
land owners to cross private lands at times when samples are to be col-
lected from the waterway. should this be necessary.
Water samples for chemical analyses should be collected from access
points along the waterway during the reconnaissance survey to ascertain
the relative magnitude of pollution at various points, and to aid in the
judgment of selecting sampling stations. Concurrently the aquatic orga-
nisms that can be observed qualitatively on rocks and other submerged
objects should be noted and recorded for similar use.
Following the completion of a reconnaissance survey, and subject to
modification or change during the course of the field sampling, decisions
can be made on the following:
I. Types of samples necessary to point to a solution to the problem
(i.e. plankton. periphyton. benthos. vascular plants or fish)
2. Sampling points for each of the selected types of samples

3. Periodicity of sampling and approximate collection time for a spe-
cific sample type and
4. Approximate number of samples necessary to complete the study.
A field investigation of a problem that demands the services of a biolo-
gist or the collection of biological samples should be investigated also by
the chemist, the microbiologist, the sanitary engineer, and perhaps a rep-
resentative of another pertinent discipline. It goes without saying that par-
ticular points in the development of solutions to specific problems are not
confined specifically to the biological discipline, but instead must be a
consideration of any discipline’s representative engaged in the study.
Thus, the points that are discussed herein are related specifically to the bi-
ologist but can be used with appropriate modifications for associated dis-
ciplines. Indeed, biological data will serve to complement chemical, physi-
cal, and other data in the process of formulating a solution to..a specific
The next aspect of study planning involves, logically, the carrying out
of details that are necessary to initiate the process of data collection. De-
cisions must be made on methods of sample handling, sample preserva-
tion, and transportation of samples to a base laboratory. In the conduct of
biological investigations these decisions are often not complex. Samples
are placed in appropraite sample containers, usually preserved with a so-
lution of formaldehyde and transported to a base laboratory either at the
completion of the field study or at intervals by commercial transportation.
The number of samples expected to be collected during an investigation
will determine the relative number of sample collection containers that
must be made ready for the study. Sampling equipment, data cards, note-
books and all of the necessary paraphernalia associated with the collec-
tion. retention, and shipment of biological samples must be organized and
arrangements made to transport same to the study site either at the study
instigation or by commercial means in time to ensure its being on hand
when the investigators arrive.
A part of the study planning involves the making of travel arrange-
ments, room accommodations, transportation of samples and equipment
both to and from the sampling area, and arragements for such items as
outboard motor gasoline, cartons for shipping collected samples, and ice
for sample preservative, if this is a necessary consideration.
Adequate survey planning can save so much time and expense during
the field study that it is worthwhile to make a list of judgments that are
necessary during this planning stage. as well as a list of items that are nec-
essary to ensure a succesful survey. By checking this list one can reduce
the possibility of oversight that otherwise would be a cause of frustration
at a later time.
In addition, a preliminary survey of pertinent literature is of extreme
importance. Data that are already available may serve as guides to addi-

tional investigation. A thorough study of the most complete maps of the
study area will facilitate both organizational planning and initial field in-
Station Selection
Preliminary to the collection of a sample, the investigator must firmly
establish the location of sampling stations. Station selection varies with
the physical features of the waterway and this discussion will relate to
streams, lakes, reservoirs, and estuaries.
Biological sampling stations for the stream environment should be rou-
tinely located close to or at those sampling stations selected for chemical
Figure 11. Laboratory analyses being conducted inside mobile laboratory.

and microbiological analyses to enhance interpretation through the use of
interrelated data. Sampling stations should be located upstream and
downstream from suspected pollution sources, and from major tributary
streams, and at appropriate intervals throughout the stream reach under
investigation. The upstream stations should depict conditions unaffected
by a pollution source or tributary. The nearest downstream station to the
pollution source or tributary should be so located that it leaves no doubt
that conditions depicted by the sample can be related to the cause of any
environmental change. The minimum number of downstream stations
from this point should be located in the most severe area of the zone of
active decomposition, downstream in an area depicting less severe condi-
tions within this zone, near the upstream reach of the zone of recovery,
near the downstream reach of the recovery zone, and in the downstream
reach that first shows no effect from the suspected pollution source. Pre-
cise station location will depend on the flow, the strength, volume and
type of pollution entering at the source, and the entrance of additional
sources of pollution to complicate the stream recovery picture. When wa-
ter in tributary streams is found to be polluted or to influence water quali-
ty in the primary stream, these streams should be similarly investigated.
A stream usually is composed of riffles and pools. These areas will vary
in depth. velocity of flow, and types of substrate that form the stream bed.
Because the biologist seeks to determine changes that occur in water qual-
ity as depicted by aquatic organisms and to relate these changes to
particular sources, he must compare observations at a particular station
with observations and findings from an upstream station, as well as a sta-
tion within the stream reach that is unaffected by a suspected source. To
accomplish this an effort should be made to collect samples from habitat
types that are morphometrically similar. Riffle samples should be com-
pared with riffle samples and pool samples compared with pool samples.
Both should be studied where feasible. To determine the extent of each
major environmental change produced by pollution, the biological investi-
gator may need to choose a number of stations in addition to those select-
ed for routine chemical or bacteriological sampling.
Plankton samples are collected usually at one point within the study
station, most commonly at midstream I to 2 feet below the surface. Sam-
ples for bottom associated organisms should be collected at a number of
points on a transsection line between the stream banks. Optimally, these
samples should be collected at a minimum of (5) points across the stream
(mid and two quarter points and at near zero water level with banks);
more than one sample may. at times, be collected from each point and re-
tained separately. Realistically the objectives of a particular survey and
the number of stations at which bottom fauna are collected may dictate
the number of samples from a particular station. Attached growths are
sampled wherever they occur.

The receiving waters from a lake or reservoir should be studied in the
same manner as influent streams. The effluent of a natural lake will usual-
ly give a better than average composite of the epilimnionic waters of the
lake. The discharge from a reservoir penstock located below the thermoc-
line, however, will not give a representative sample of the productive zone
of the reservoir but shows water quality in a portion of the hypolimnion
instead. A study would be indicated to show the effect of the low-level
discharge on the receiving waters.
Within the lake or reservoir, a number of sampling sites may be chosen
depending on the problem under investigation and the conditions to be
studied. An investigation of the kinds and relative abundance of aquatic
vegetation would naturally be limited to the littoral area. A mapping of
aquatic plants often proves useful for future comparisons. Fish sampling
Figure 12. Diagram of a natural lake basin showing suggested sampling sites.
Samples taken from points on transaction lines on a periodic or seasonal
basis are valuable to determine vertical water characteristics and the benthic
standing crop.

also is often more profitable in shallow water areas, although gill nets set
in the region of the thermodine and below may sample a fish population
not usually observed in shallow water.
The use of transections in sampling a lake bottom is of particular val-
ue because there are changes in depth and because benthos concentration
zones usually occur. Unless sampling is done systematically and at rela-
tively close intervals along transections, especially those that extend across
the zone between the weed beds and the upper extent of the hypolimnion,
concentration zones may be missed entirely or inadequately represented.
Maximum benthic productivity may occur in the profundal region. Be-
cause depth is an important factor in the distribution of bottom orga-
nisms, productivity is often compared on the basis of samples collected
from similar depth zones. Collections from a transection will sample all
depth zones, and a sufficient number of samples must be taken to make
the data meaningful.
A circular lake basin should be sampled from several transections ex-
tending from shore to the deepest point of the basin. A long narrow basin
is suitable for regularly spaced parallel transects that cross the basin per-
pendicular to the shore, beginning near the inlet and ending near the out-
let. A large bay should he bisected by a transection originating near shore
and extending to the lake proper.
There are definite advantages in sampling the benthic population in
winter beneath the ice cover in lakes. Samples can be collected at definite,
spaced intervals on a transection, and the exact location of sampling
points can be determined. Also, collections are at a time of peak benthic
population when emerging insects do not alter the benthic population.
Transactions also aid in sampling the palnkton population. Because
of the number of analyses necessary to appraise the plankton popula-
tion. however, more strategic points are usually sampled, such as water
intakes, a site near the dam in the forcbay area or discharge, constric-
tions within the water body, and major bays that may influence the main
basin. Because of significant population variation, plankton samples must
be taken vertically at periodic depths. and at different times over the
24-hour day.
Reservoirs are usually long and narrow water bodies with the widest
portions occuring downstream. They are particularly suitable for the
placement of imaginary transection lines that extend perpendicularly from
one shore to the opposite shore. Sampling stations can be conveniently lo-
cated on these transections. In addition water use return waters or areas
designated for water use removals should be sampled.
The selection of sampling stations in estuaries combines the aspects of
stream sampling with those of the more static lake environment. Water
within the estuary is controlled by tides and the force of water discharged
by the river and, because of this, particular constituents of water quality

Figure 13. Diagram of a long, narrow reservoir showing suggested sampling stations.

may remain localized in a given area for a considerable period of time be-
fore they are dispersed or carried out to sea. Thus, the flow characteristics
of the water mass are extremely important in order to define water quality
and prognosticate effects of waste discharges on it. The flowing water por-
tion of an estuarine study should be attacked in a manner similar to that
described for the stream environment. Sampling stations within the true
estuary can be profitably developed along transection lines that either
cross the estuary, more or less perpendicularly from one shore to another,
or that extend out of the estuary in two or more directions from a sus-
pected point source of pollution. Whenever possible, samples should be
collected from areas that represent the estuarine habitat unaffected by
pollution, as well as areas that depict environmental changes produced by
Sampling Periodicity
Weekly collecuons. as a minimum, are desirable throughout the season
of active biological growth to measure planktonic populations and chemi-
cal constituents that may change rapidly. In special studies, samples are
often collected daily or even periodically during a 24-hour day to assess
these changes. During the non-growing season, monthly samples of these
constituents should be adequate except where otherwise indicated by the
objecives of the stud . A reconnaissance and mapping of the aquatic veg-
etation should be done during maximum vegetation growth, usually in
Insect representatives of the bottom organism community emerge from
the water as adults periodically throughout the warm weather period; time
of emergence depends on the species involved. Life histories of these or-
ganisms tend to overlap so that at no time is there a dearth of these orga-
nisms within the bottom associated community. Bottom fauna should be
sampled during the annual seasons; the standing crop will be highest.
however, during the fall and winter periods when insect emergence is min-
imal, and one of the sampling dates should reflect this period.
Because of the report deadline or limited personnel available, the theo-
ry and practice of station location and sampling periodicity may not be
the same. The objectives of a study may be met by investigating only bot-
tom fauna and attached organisms in a stream, and these on only one oc-
casion. Much can be learned from this minimal effort. The investigator
should keep in mind that water quality effects from organic wastes will
likely be at their worst during the warm weather low-flow period. When
streams become covered with ice in northern climes during winter, anoth-
er period with severe conditions of existence for bottom fauna occurs in
late winter. The zone of active decomposition resulting from an organic
waste source will be transferred a considerable distance downstream
under ice cover.

Little knowledge may be gained from only one series of plankton sam-
ples from a stream. Because these organisms are carried by the currents, a
given sample is representative of water quality at some point upstream
rather than at the place of sampling.
Data and Saniple Collection
The collection of data and samples from a particular station involves
making a number of scientific observations, flow measurements on
streams, inlets and outlets to standing bodies of water such as lakes and
reservoirs, suspected municipal and industrial waste sources, and water use
drawoff and return points, which can be correlated with sampling dates,
are of utmost importance. Such data permit a calculation of the amounts
of particular water quality constituents passing a point at a given time,
and estimates can be made from these data on daily, monthly, or annual
contributions. Rainfall may be a contributing factor to investigations con-
cerning major aquatic plant nutrients and should be sampled to determine
annual contributing amounts of nitrogen and phosphorus. A house-to-
house survey of the area draining to a watercourse may be indicated to
determine types of waste treatment and to project potential impact of
wastes that are discharged to or reach the watercourse. The types and
amounts of fertilizers applied to lands within the drainage basin, as well
as the period of the year when fertilizers arc applied. may he of impor-
tance to the study. Groundwater may be a factor and should be sampled
from appropriate adjacent wells for those constituents of importance.
On approaching a stream station a number of observations must be
made that will later be considered in interpreting the biological findings.
Observations are made on water depth; presence of riffles and pools;
stream width; flow characteristics; bank cover; presence of slime growths.
attached algae, scum algae. and other aquatic plants, as well as red sludge-
worm masses; and unusual physical characteristics such as silt deposits,
organic sludge deposits, iron precipitates, or various waste materials from
manufacturing processes.
Organisms associated with the stream bed are studied most often in the
biological evaluation of water quality. These organisms are valuable to
relate water quality because they are not equipped to move great distances
through their own efforts and, thus, remain at fixed points to indicate wa-
ter quality. Because the life history of many of these organisms extends
through 1 year or longer, their presence or absence is indicative of water
quality within the past. as well as the present. Bottom associated orga-
nisms are relatively easy to capture with conventional sampling equipment
and the amount of time and effort devoted to their capture and interpreta-
tion is not as great as that required for other segments of the aquatic
The investigator should ask himself three basic questions: Based on a
knowledge of preferred organism habitats, what bottom fauna should I

expect to find at this station? Specifically, where would I expect to find
these creatures? What is the appropriate gear with which to capture them?
A close search of the respective areas should be made noting and collect-
ing qualitatively the various types of organisms. A commercial 30-mesh
sieve is a handy exploratory tool.
The qualitative search for benthos should involve the collection of or-
ganisms from rocks, plants, submerged twigs or debris, or leaves of over-
hanging trees that become submerged and waterlogged. It is often conven-
ient to scrape and wash organisms from these materials into a bucket or
tub partially filled with water and then to pass this water through the
sieve to concentrate and retain the organisms. The collected sample may
be preserved for organism sorting and identification later. The investigator
should search until he is certain that he has collected the majority of spe-
cies that can tolerate the particular environment. In some environments it
Date _____________ Hour _________ Collector __________________
Field Designation —
Station Location —
Sample No. ______________________ Stream Miles _____________
Bottom: _____ Rock: _____ C. Gravel F. : C. Sand F. _____
% : Sandy Loam: ______ Silt Loam: _____ Silt:
______ C. Clay F. - : Organic Sludge:
Sample Location Sample Depth
River: Width — Depth — Current ____________
:Temp — DO pH
Phth Alk __________ Tot Alk __________ Cond __________
Sampler : Ek : Pet : Sq Ft : Qual
No. of Samples:
Fish: Gear : Shocker : Dip Net : Seine
Sample Time
Sample Area :
Figure 14. Field Collection Card for Benthic Samples.
Desired items or a field biological coflection card may be arranged on a 5” x 8”
unlined card for convenience. Cards can be carried in a field notebook; they
may be filed after field and laboratory use. The backside of the card may be
ruled to itemize the organisms observed in the laboratory examination of the
collected sample.

is possible only to collect qualitative samples because the physical nature
of the waterway may be such that quantitative sampling is not feasible.
Qualitative sampling determines the variety of species occupying a
reach of a waterway. Samples may be taken by any method that will cap-
ture representatives of the species present. Collections from such sam-
plings indicate changes in the environment, but they generally do not ac-
curately reflect the degree of change. Mayflies, for example, may be
reduced in the stream because of adverse conditions from 100 to 1 per
square foot, whereas sludgeworms may increase from 1 to 14,000 per
square foot. Qualitative data would indicate the presence of both species,
but might not necessarily delineate the change in predominance from
mayflies to sludgeworms.
The basic principal in qualitative sampling is to collect as many differ-
ent kinds of animals as practical. Obviously, because of the rarity of some
forms, the probability of collecting a specimen of every kind is remote
and a limit must be imposed on the collector’s efforts. Two convenient
limiting methods are:
(1) Presetting a time limit on the collector’s effort at each sampling
point. A minimum of 30 minutes and a maximum of an hour is a
convenient range in which to establish this limit.
(2) Sampling in an area until new forms are encountered so infre-
quently that “the law of diminishing returns” dictates abandoning
the sampling point. This method requires professional judgment
—but if after 10 minutes only a single species or organism is
found, the sampler can move to the next sampling site where he
might continue to find new forms after searching more than an
A number of tools readily obtained in any community are valuable in
this type of sampling:
a. Pocket-knives are excellent tools to remove animals from crevices
in rocks, to peel bark from decaying logs thus exposing animals, and
to slip under animals to lift and transfer them to sample containers.
b. Mason jars in ½ to 1 pint sizes serve as the most economical sam-
ple containers and provide visibility of the preserved specimens.
e. Common garden rakes are valuable to retrieve rocks, brush, logs
and aquatic vegetation for inspection.
d. Fine-meshed dip-nets are good devices for sweeping animals from
vegetation or out from under over-hanging rock ledges.
e. Buckets are handy to quickly receive rocks and debris, thus prevent-
ing escape of the swift running animals.
f. Sheet polyethyelene, 6 x 6 feet, can be spread on the stream bank
and substrate materials placed upon it. As the materials begin to dry
the animals will abandon their hiding places and can be seen readily
as they migrate across the sheet seeking water.

g. U.S. Standard Series No. 30 soil sieves can be used to scoop up fine
sediments and sieve out its inhabitants. The entire qualitative sam-
ple can also be screened to standardize the organism sizes taken at
various sampling sites.
h. Any other tools, such as forceps, scalpels, shovels, and forks are le-
gitimate devices and can prove their merit in individual situations.
Following these general observations, the investigator collects appropri-
ate quantitative samples of the various kinds of organisms present in the
aquatic area. He makes certain that: (1) The sampling area selected is
representative of stream conditions, and (2) the sample is representative
of and contains those forms predominant in the area and encountered
during the qualitative search.
Bottom samples in lakes usually may be collected with an Ekman
dredge. although the physical composition of the bottom determines to a
great extent the type of samples that must be used to collect an adequate
sample. The Ekman dredge (Ekman. 1911) consists of a square box of
sheet brass 6 x 6 inches in cross section.* The lower opening of this box
is closed by a pair of strong jaws so made and installed that they oppose
each other. When open. the jaws are pulled apart so that the whole bot-
tom of the box is open; the jaws are held open by chains attached to trip
pins. To close the dredge. the trip pins are released by a brass messenger
sent down the attachment rope and the jaws snap shut by two strong ex-
ternal springs. The hinged top of the box may he equipped with a perma-
nent 30-mesh screen to prevent loss of organisms if the samples sinks into
mud deeper than its own height. The sampler is especially adapted for use
iii soft, finely divided mud and muck; it does not function properly on
sand bottoms or hard substrates. The Ekman can also be mounted on a
pipe for shallow stream sampling and tripped by a thrust-through rod.
The Petersen dredge (Petersen. 1911) is a most versatile stream bed
sampler to collect bottom life. It is widely used to sample hard bottoms
such as sand. gravel, marl. clay, and similar materials. It is an iron.
clam-type dredge. samples an area of 0.6 to 0.8 square foot, and weighs
between 35 and 70 pounds depending on the rare use of additional
weights that may be bolted to its sides. By means of a rope. the dredge is
slowly lowered to the bottom to avoid disturbing and flushing away signif-
icant lighter materials. As tension is eased on the rope, the mechanism
holding the jaws apart is released. As the rope is again made taut, a sam-
ple is secured. The operator controls the dredge by maintaining tension on
the rope until the dredge is placed. This is helpful in sampling gravel or
rubble, as the operator can determine through sound and touch the type
of bottom and by carefully manipulating the dredge, can secure a better
sample than would otherwise be possible. in streams with gravel and rub-
Ekmans are made also in 9” x 9” and 12” x 12” sizes, hut because of size of
grabs. these are almost impossible to operate effectively on many occasions-
Through long experience the author recommends only the 6” x 6” size.

Figure 15. Biological collecting equipment. From left, Kemmerer sampler,
Ekman dredge, U.S. Standard No. 30 sieve, washing bucket, and Petersen dredge.

ble beds that permit wading, another technique is for the investigator to
place the dredge and then stand on the jaws working them into the stream
bed with his weight, thus gradually closing them. When the dredge is sur-
faced, careful and rapid placement and subsequent discharge, endwise, of
the dredge into a bucket whose lip is placed at the water’s surface pre-
vents loss of material.
The orange-peel dredge, is a multij awed, round dredge with a canvas
closure serving as a portion of the sample compartment. lit is available in
a variety of sizes. Its sampling area is a function of depth of penetration
and this area must be calibrated, usually with the volume of sediment
contents. It has received wide use in marine waters and in the Great
Lakes, where it has advantages over other tools for sampling sandy sub-
The ponar dredge is receiving increased use in deep lakes. In compara-
tive studies it is more efficient than the Petersen dredge when samples are
secured from deep (>100 feet) waters. In appearance it is similar to a
Petersen dredge but it has side-plates and a screen on the top of the sam-
ple compartment.
The Smith-McIntyre dredge has the heavy steel construction of the Pe-
tersen, but its jaws are closed by strong coil springs. Its principal advan-
tage is its stability or operator control in rough waters. Its bulk and heavy
weight requires operation from large boats equipped with a powered
Core samplers have been used to sample sediments in depth and collect
small areas (2—4 sq. inches) of the mud-water interface. Their efficient
use requires dense animal populations. Corer design varies from hand-
pushed tubes to explosive driven and automatic surfacing models. The
Phieger type is the most widely used corer in water quality studies. It is a
gravity corer, relying on its weight (near 100 lbs.) to drive its sample
tube into the substrate, The length of core retained will vary with sub-
strate texture; 30 inches is near the maximum length. A core of this
length is adequate for most physical, chemical or fossil examination to de-
lineate recent environmental changes.
The Wilding, or stove-pipe, sampler is the only sampler that will quan-
titatively sample the fauna inhabiting the bottom and/or the vegetation in
areas with dense aquatic weed growths. Its operation may be restricted to
the vegetation, or mud-water interface sediment may be included.
Drift nets may be suspended in flowing waters to capture invertebrates
that have migrated into the water mass from the bottom substrates and
are temporarily being transported by currents. Their principal uses have
been to study migratory movements and to evaluate sublethal toxicants,
especially insecticides, on the fauna. Before toxicants become lethal the
animals are weakened and cannot maintain their benthic position and thus
are swept away by the currents and carried into the nets.

These nets must be standardized in an individual study. As of now no
single style of net has been standardized among investigators. It is recom-
mended that these nets be designed with a 1 x 1 foot upstream opening,
with U.S. Standard Series No. 30 netting (or finer, with subsequent
screening for uniform organism size), and with a net-bag length of 36
After suspension in the water, these nets require constant tending.
Within a fraction of an hour the nets efficiency is rechiced through clog-
ging of the net by drifting animals and detritus that soon results in signifi-
cant volumes of water and organisms being diverted around the mouth of
the net.
Other sampling gear, and their uses, will be described in the 13th Edi-
tion of Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater.
After the bottom sample is collected by one of the deepwater sampling
devices, it is brought to the surface and placed in a large pail or tub. Wa-
ter for sample dilution is added to the pail, and the sample is mixed into a
slurry with the slurry finally being passed through a U.S. Standard No. 30
mesh sieve while the sieve is being rotated in the water. The washing op-
eration is repeated until all fine material has passed through the sieve, and
all organisms are retained in the sieve. The organisms and coarser debris
are then removed form the sieve and are preserved. It is often easier to
sort the organisms from the debris when the organisms are alive. Time
schedules and extensive field operations, however, often dictate that sam-
ple collection and examination take place at different times during the
year. Wide-mouthed, tapered pint freeze jars, obtainable from most gro-
cery stores, have proven to be excellent bottom organism sample contain-
ers. When these jars are filled half full with 10-percent formalin before
the days activities of sample collection, it is a time-saving process to
transfer the concentrated sample from the side of the sieve to the jar of
preservative by lightly hitting the sieve against the top of the jar. The in-
vestigator is assured always of a minimum of 5-percent formalin in the
sample container, a sufficient strength to preserve the collected organisms.
After the samples are preserved in the field they are returned to the labo-
ratory where the organisms are separated from the debris, placed in re-
spective groups, identified, and enumerated.
To sample riffle areas in streams, a square-foot bottom sampler, origi-
nally described by Surber (1936), is widely used. It consists of two
1-foot-square brass frames hinged together at right angles; one frame sup-
ports the net which is held extended downstream by current velocities, the
other encloses the sampling area. in field operation, the sampler is so
placed that organisms dislodged by hand from the substratum within the
sampling frame will be carried into the net by the current. In stagnant or
in slowly moving water, it often is not practical to employ this square-foot

In practice, it may be found convenient to remove the larger rocks
from inside the sampling frame, placing them in a bucket or tub partially
filled with water. Here, the organisms can be washed or scraped from the
rocks, and concentrated by a sieve as described earlier, before being com-
bined with those from the Surber sampler in a sample jar with preserva-
Artificial substrates have been successfully employed in studying bot-
tom fauna in flowing streams. One multiple-plate sampler constructed of
tempered hardboard (Hester and Dendy, 1962) has been especially suita-
ble for studying stream inhabitants in those streams that do not possess a
natural substrate suitable for the attachment of benthic forms. A sampler
constructed of eight 3-inch squares, separated by seven I-inch squares,
and held in place by a bolt or threaded rod exposes slightly more than 1
square foot of surface to which organisms can attach.
Artificial substrates are placed in the water for 3- to 6-weeks and then
carefully removed to prevent losing the organisms that have made them a
temporary home. As nearly as possible the substrates should be placed at
similar depths and in similar physical relationship to the stream at all sta-
tions. Usually they are placed about 1-loot beneath the surface or I-foot
off the stream bed. The multiple-plate sampler can be reduced in size to
three plates only and placed vertically near the surface, at mid-depth, and
near the bottom at a particular station. Loss of some substrates because
of vandalism or flooding should be anticipated.
Periphyton include that assemblage of organisms that grow on free sur-
faces of submerged objects in water and cover them with a slimy coat.
Cooke (1956 comprehensively reviews the literature on the subject. Per-
iphyton play an important role in flowing waters because these organisms
are the major primary producers in that environment. Thus, they are an
important part of a lake or reservoir study of both the influent and receiv-
ing streams. A number of substrates have been proposed with which to
study attached organisms including glass slides, cement blocks, wooden
shingles, and plexiglass plates (Grzenda and Brehmer, 1960). Growths
on such substrates may be analyzed qualitatively or quantitatively.
The type of artificial substrate employed to collect organisms is not ter-
ribly important as long as the same type is used at all such sampling sta-
tions in a particular investigation. Any type will be somewhat selective in
those organisms that are attracted to it. They do tend to favor drift orga-
nisms or those that become detached from their dwelling areas and float
downstream with the current. When the same type of sampler is used at
each station, data collected among the stations should be comparable.
Patrick et al. (1954) developed a slide-carrying device, termed the
Catherwood Diatometer . to sample the diatom populations of streams. It
consists of a plastic base mounted on a lead bar shaped like a boat. On
the plastic base are mounted two floats designed so that the depth to
which the diatometer is sunk can be varied. Between the floats, behind a

I ;4 :

4 iè4 r’ *
.i F — • i • • ; %
. 1 r y.’ jh •
•.7 :.. P% z .
4 4 4.

r . -
j 7! :
Figure 16. A multiple-plate artificial substrate colonized by aquatic organisms
(Hester-Dendy type).
plastic V-shaped vane, the plastic slide holder slotted to hold six slides
vertically is mounted edgewise to the current. The vane prevents excess
washing of the slides. It was stated that 1 week was sufficient to expose
the slides and that the population of an unpolluted stream could be esti-
mated as adequately with this method as with the usual methods of col-
lecting diatoms. Calculations upon which these estimates are based must
be corrected when dealing with polluted streams.
A comprehensive review on limnological methods to investigate pen-
phytic communities has been prepared by Sladeckova (1962). She lists
448 references as a bibliography and portrays a large number of devices
on which attached organisms can grow and be sampled. In a summary she
states that there is no single, universal method for the quantitative evalua-
tion of periphyton for every purpose. An analysis of ecological factors in-
fluencing the periphytic community may make methods for the evaluation
of this community on natural substrata preferable. On the contrary, the

use of artificial substrata is essential for the determination of periphyton
formation on a unit area or for the study of colonization and stratification
of attached organisms, especially in deep water. The choice of exposure
technique is often determined by circumstance. The duration of exposure
must be tested in advance. Lund and Tailing (1957) completed an earlier
review with 777 references; they also discussed methods with special ref-
erence to algae, both planktonic and attached. Sladecek and Sladeckova
(1964) discussed the glass slide method for the determination of periphy-
tic production in particular. Methods were cited for the calculation of
production rates.
En the study of attached organisms in waters receiving acid mine drain-.
age, it was found that extreme corrosion of the slide holding device con-
tributed to a substantial loss of samplers during the study period. A type
of putty (Plasti-tak *) has been found to be extremely useful to secure mi-
croscope slides to clay bricks or to the upper fiber board plate of a multi-
plate sampler (Thomas, 1968). Advantages to this procedure include
good holding power, noncorrosive aspects in acid or salt water, ease of ar-
tificial substrate placement, low cost, and removal of single slides without
disturbing adjacent ones. The surface to which the adhesive is applied
must be dry and clean and the adhesive will release in fast water after
about 3 weeks.
To obtain a history of sediment deposition or to permit selection of
strata within the sediments, sampling of these by a commercial core sam-
pling device is expedient. Much information can be obtained of a histori-
cal nature and can be related to the problem under investigation through
the chemical and biological examination of sediment cores.
Samples collected for plankton analysis are most often similar to those
collected for the analyses of chemical water quality. They may be col-
lected with the aid of a Kemmerer sampler or similar device that permits
capture of a sample from a particular water strata.
Fish samples may be collected by nets, seines, poisons, and electrofish-
ing. Electrofishing is conducted by means of an alternating or direct
electrical current applied to water that has a resistance different from the
fish. This difference in resistance to pulsating direct current stimulates the
swimming muscles for short periods of time, causing the fish to orient and
be attracted to the positive clectrode An electrical field of sufficient po-
tential to demobilize the fish is present near the positive electrode, but de-
creases in intensity with distance. After the fish are identified, weighed.
and measured. they commonly can be returned to the water uninjured.
The electrofishing unit may consist of a 110-volt, 60-cycle, heavy duty
generator, an electrical control section, which is a modified commercially
sold variable voltage pulsator. and electrodes. The electrical control sec-
tion provides selection of voltages from 50 to 700 volts a.c. and 25 to
Mention of a commercial product does not constitute endorsement by the Fed-
eral Water Pollution Control Administration, U.S. Department of the interior.

350 volts d.c. The a.c. current acts as a standby for the d .c. current and is
used in cases of extremely low water resistance. The variable voltage al-
lows control of field size in various types of water.
Meaningful samples of littoral vegetation may be difficult to secure.
Sampling, per se, is often not necessary. It is usually sufficient to map,
identify, and estimate abundance of the principal components of the
aquatic vegetation population.
Comprehensive investigation of particular field problems may necessi-
tate special investigative tools that can be developed through modification
of existing tools. The development and use of these devices depends in
large measure on the ingenuity and imagination of the investigator. Spe-
cial studies that may be performed in conjuction with a field investigation
would include the conduct of bioassays to test organisms in particular ef-
fluents or other substances where toxicity to aquatic life may be sus-
pected. The procedure to conduct bioassays is well described in Standard
Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater (Anon., 1965).
Sample Analyses
For a detailed discussion of the laboratory examination of biological
samples, Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewa-
ter should be examined.
When samples are collected of animals associated with the lake or
stream bed the organisms and debris are usually preserved with 10 per-
cent formalin. The formalized sample is washed in the laboratory to re-
move the strong formalin solution. From this point it is necessary to re-
move and segregate the animals on which an interpretation will be made
from the debris within the sample jar. A number of flotation methods
have been proposed by various authors to reduce the time expended in
this operation. When an investigation includes stream reaches that are
heavily polluted with organic sludges or that produce prolific growths of
slimes and other attached organisms, flotation methods do not work well.
Thus, as a routine measure the somewhat laborious effort of separating
organisms from debris through hand sorting must be employed.
A white enamel pan with a depth of approximately 1½” is often used
in the hand picking operation. It is convenient to half fill the pan with wa-
ter and then place 2 or 3 tablespoons of material from the sample jar in
the center of the pan. By teasing the sample to all sides with the aid of
forceps, small animals can be removed without difficulty. It is helpful for
later indentification to keep the removed organisms separated into the tax-
onomic groups that are discernible with the unaided eye. When it is noted
that organisms within the collected sample are limited to a few (2 to 4)
kinds and are extreme]y abundant as they often are when sludgeworms re-
produce in great numbers in organic sludge, samples may be split to re-
duce time and labor in removing organisms. This is accomplished by plac-
ing the sample in the white pan without water, leveling the sample

surface, and randomly selecting ½, 1 16’ or I , of the sample for orga-
nism removal. When this is done, the entire sample should be examined
for those larger organisms that may not be numerous. In reports written
principally for those outside of the biological discipline, bottom fauna!
abundance is expressed usually as the number of a particular kind of or-
ganisni per square foot. Organisms from a 6” x 6” Ekinan dredge sample,
for example, would be multipled by 4 to arrive at the number per square
foot. When the sample is split and only an aliquot examined, the appro-
priate conversion multiplication must also be used. Further identification
through the use of a stereoscopic microscope and counts to ascertain
numbers within a particular group are made to facilitate interpretation of
water quality.
Slimes and other attached growths are identified and estimates made of
relative abundance. Quantitative methods are often employed. Chloro-
phyll determinations may be used as an indicator of those plants that pos-
sess this material and the determination is often helpful to separate at-
tached algal quantities from slinies.
Chlorophyll, an enzyme present in green plants, in the presence of light
converts carbon dioxide and water to basic sugar, a process that is termed
photosynthesis. Chlorophyll increases in lakes as the lakes become more
eu opbic; thus chlorophyll measurements provide comparative data on
Figure 17. Sorting, enumeration, and identification equipment used in
analyzing benthic samples.

eutrophication (Deevey and Bishop, 1942; Kozminski, 1938; Manning
and Juday, 1941; Anderson, 1961).
The quantity of chlorophyll has also been used as a general index of
the quantity of algae present (Harvey, 1934; Riley et al., 1949; Tucker,
1949). Chlorophyll is related closely to primary production or the con-
version of organic materials to living plant tissue (Manning and Juday,
1941; Ryther and Yentsch, 1957; Odum et al., 1958). Because a large
quantity of algae may be present. but not growing, and conversely a small
population of algae may exhibit a substantial growth rate, the quantity of
algae may not be related directly to primary production. Factors such as
light intensity, nutrient availability, temperature, age or viability of algal
cells, and size of the cells influence the quantity of chlorophyll per unit of
algae present (Odum et at., 1958).
Chlorophyll-bearing cells may be filtered from the water with mem-
brane filters (0.45 micron pore). Filters and cells are placed in vials of
acetone for extraction of the pigments and for solution of the filters (Creitz
and Richards, 1955). Samples are then centrifuged to remove particulate
suspended materials. The clear supernatant pigment-bearing acetone is ex-
amined on a recording spectrophotometer. Spectrums are evaluated and
the quantity of chlorophyll determined as outlined by Richards with
Thompson (1952).
Some waters contain sufficient plankton (phyto- and/or zooplankton)
so that samples must be diluted to obtain adequate numerical information:
however, with a sparse plankton sample, concentration should be used.
The phytoplankton in samples from most natural waters require neither
dilution nor concentration and should be enumerated directly. Corre-
spondingly, zooplankton often are not sufficiently abundant to be counted
without concentration. Selection of methods and materials used in plank-
ton enumeration depends on objectives of the study, density of plankters
in the waters being investigated, equipment available, and experience of
the investigator.
The Sedgwick-Rafter cell has been and continues to be the most com-
monly employed device for plankton enumeration because it is easily ma-
nipulated and provides reasonably reproducible information when used
with a calibrated microscope equipped with an eyepiece measuring device,
usually a Whipple ocular micrometer. It can be used to enumerate undi-
luted, concentrated, or diluted plankton samples. The biggest disadvan-
tage associated with the cell is magnification. The cell cannot be used for
enumerating very small plankton unless the microscope is equipped with
special lenses that provide sufficient magnification (400X or greater) and
clearance between objective lenses and the cell.
The Sedgwiek-Rafter cell is 50-mm. long by 20-mm. wide by I-mm.
deep. Since the total area is I 000 nim./ the total volume is 1 >( 10 2 cubic
, 1,000 mm. 3 , or 1 ml. A ‘strip” the length of the cell thus constitutes a
volume 50-mm. long, 1-mm. deep. and the width of the Whipple field.

Two or four strips usually are counted, depending on the density of
plankters. Counting more than four strips is not expedient when there are
many samples to be enumerated; concentrating procedures then should be
employed, and counts made of plankters in the concentrate.
No. per ml. = Actual Count >( •
Volume of strip (mm. 3 )
If the sample has been concentrated, the concentration factor is divided
into the actual count to derive the number of organisms per ml. For sepa-
rate field counts (usually 10 or more fields):
No. per ml. = avg. count per field X
Volume of field >( No. of fields
When special lenses are not used and there is a need to enumerate
small plankton, unusually abundant, other procedures may be employed
in conjunction with and related to counts obtained from the Sedgwick-
Rafter cell.
Lackey (1938) used a drop counting method in his examination of
Scioto River, Ohio, phytoplankton. in this method, the sample is first cen-
trifuged and “. . • after thorough agitation by alternately sucking it in
and spurting it out of the pipette. the exact number of drops was counted
and a sufficient number of drops of the decanted portion was added, so
that one drop of catch bore a definite relationship to the amount centri-
fuged.” One drop of sample is put on a glass slide and a cover glass add-
ed; 5 low-power fields and 10 high-power fields are examined, and num-
ber of each species is recorded at the magnifications used. Enumeration is
repeated on 3 such mounts for a total of 15 lowpower fields and 30 high-
power fields.
No per ml = avg. no. per field X no. of fields per drop or per cover
slip x no. of drops per ml ± the concentration factor.
The concentration factor = ml of original sample - - ml of concen-
trate x (100 — percent of preservative in sample).
Lackey’s method has the advantages of including all organisms in the
catch, simplicity and ease of manipulation, and instant use of the high
power magnification where identification with the low power is questiona-
ble. Certain disadvantages are inherent in the method: (1) because water
normally is used as a mounting medium enumeration must be accom-
plished relatively rapidly to prevent dessication and subsequnt distortion
of organisms; (2) results are not sufficiently accurate when only one
slide-mount is examined, thus necessitating preparation and enumeration
of at least three or more slide-mounts; and (3) the investigator should be
sufficiently familiar with plankton to rapidly identify and count the speci-
mens encountered.
Application of the membrane filter method of plankton counting re-
quires a vacuum pump, special filtering papers, and experience in deter-

mining the proper amount of sample to be filtered. Plankton in samples
from waters containing substantial quantities of suspended matter such as
silt may be difficult to enumerate by this method since, in the process of
filtering, the suspended matter tends to crush the plankton or otherwise
obscure them from view. However, the method has certain features that
make it particularly adaptable for use on waters with a low phytoplankton
and silt contents. Primary among these features, the method permits the
use of conventional microscope lenses to achieve high magnification for
enumeration of small plankton (the membrane filter retains very small or-
ganisms), provides relatively rapid processing of samples if the investiga-
tor is familiar with the procedure and the plankton, does not require
counting of individual plankters to derive enumeration data, and increases
the probability of observing the less abundant forms (McNabb, 1960).
The sample is filtered through a 1-inch membrane filter. The wet filter
is removed and placed on top of 2 drops of immersion oil on a micro-
scopic slide, and 2 drops of immersion oil are placed on top of the filter.
The filter is air-dried at room temperature until clear (approximately 48
hours). A cover slip is added prior to examination.
When examined, the magnification and sampling field or quadrat must
be of such size that the most abundant species will appear in at least 70
but not more than 90 percent of the microscopic quadrats examined (80
percent is optimum). Otherwise the field size or the amount of sample
concentrated must be altered. The occurrence of each species in 30 ran-
dom microscopic fields is recorded.
Number of organisms per milliliter = density (d) from table 4 ><
number of quadrats or fields on membrane filter ± number of
milliliters filtered >< formalin dilution factor [ 0.96 for 4 percent
Plankton samples form the Madison, Wis., sewage treatment plant ef-
fluent diversion study (Mackenthun et al., 1960) were concentrated by
settling with a liquid detergent and were counted by the drop technique.
To concentrate the phytoplankton, 500 ml. of stream water were placed
in 1-liter glass settling cylinders to which were added 20 ml. of commercial
formalin to preserve the sample, and 10 ml. of a detergent to settle the
sample. Sedimentation of the plankton was complete in 24 hours, after
which the supernatant was carefully siphoned from the cylinder, and the
concentrate was washed into 100 ml. centrifuge tubes. These were spun at
2,000 r.p.m. for 6 minutes. The supernatant in the tube was decanted and
the concentrate was washed into screw-capped storage vials and brought
to the nearest 5 ml. by the addition of 4% formalin and the use of a vol-
ume standard. In making the drop count, 5 low-power fields and 10
high-power fields were observed on this slide, and the magnification as
well as number of each species of organisms was recorded. This proce-
dure was repeated on 3 such mounts so that totals of 15 low-power fields

Table 4. Conversion Table for Membrane Filter Technique
(Based on 30 Scored Fields)
Total occurrence F% d
1 3.3 0.03
2 6.7 0.07
3 10.0 0.10
4 13.3 0.14
5 16.7 0.18
6 20.0 0.22
7 23.3 0.26
8 26.7 0.31
9 30.0 0.35
10 33.3 0.40
11 36.7 0.45
12 40.0 0.51
13 43.3 0.57
14 46.7 0.63
15 50.0 0.69
16 53.3 0.76
17 56.7 0.83
18 60.0 0.91
19 63.3 1.00
20 66.7 1.10
21 70.0 1.20
22 73 ,3 1.32
23 76.7 1.47
24 80.0 1.61
25 83.3 1.79
26 86.7 2.02
27 90.0 2.30
28 93.3 2.71
29 96.7 3.42
30 100.0
Where F = total number of species occurrences X 100
total number of quadrats examined
and 30 high-power fields were observed. The number of a particular type
of organism in I liter of water was determined by the following formula:
No. 11=
(Avg No./field) (No. fields/coverslip) (No. drops/mi) x 1,000
Concentration factor
ml. of original sample
The concentration factor —
(ml. of concentrate) (0.94)
where 0.94 accounts for the dilution of the sample by the addition of for-
maim and the detergent.
The average volume in cubic microns of each species was obtained by
measuring 20 individuals. The volume contributed by each species was
expressed in parts per million by use of the following formula:
Volume (ppm) = (No. org/i) (avg species vol in 3) X 10 .

Palmer (Palmer and Maloney, 1954), developed a new counting slide
for nannoplankton.
Mackenthun employed constable tubes to determine cell volume in a
1956 Wisconsin study. Concentrated algal samples were obtained on July
25, 1956, and again on August 8, 1956, from Station I in the Mcnasha
Channel, Fox River, at mileage designation 38.5, at Station 2 from the
Rapide Croche Dam at mileage designation 19.5, and Station 3 upstream
from De Pere Dam at mileage designation 7.0. The concentrated algal
samples were obtained by centrifuging 50 gallons of river water at 12,000
r.p.m. and suspending the residue in 1 gallon of algal-free water. A blen-
der was employed in resuspending the algae. An aloquot sample of this
50 to 1 concentration was used for biological analyses.
Ten ml. of the concentrated samples, equivalent to 500 ml. of raw wa-
ter, were centrifuged at an approximate speed of 2,000 r.p.m. in a con
stable tube. The addition of a small amount of detergent to the constable
tube will facilitate the packing of small blue-green algae. On August 8, 50
liters of river water were strained through a fine plankton net at the 3 sta-
tions for comparative purposes. The cell pack or cell volume as calculated
on a raw-water basis was as follows:
Cell pack (mI./1.)
August 8
Station July 25 Centrifuged Net plankton
1 0.068 0.086 0.071
2 .058 .066 .038
3 .036 .045 .031
Both the centrifuged and net plankton samples taken on August 8 dis-
played color stratification in the constable tube. The upper white layer
was composed principally of single blue-green algal cells and small frag-
ments of blue-green algal colonies. The middle light green layer was prin-
cipally blue-green colonies and many celled filaments or larger fragments
of these filaments of Aphanizomenon, Anabaena, and Gloeotric/iia. in ad-
dition, there were numerous single blue-green cells and some colonial
greens with a few diatoms. The lower dark layer was predominately blue-
green algae, because of their abundance in the sample, but diatoms were
heavily concentrated. The large-celled Lyngb a birgei was most concen-
trated in this layer, as was the dinoflagellate, Ceratium.
The packed cells, or residue, from the constable tubes were washed in
distilled water and were dried and ignited in a platinum dish. The follow-
ing results were obtained:
Mg. dry Wgt./L Mg. Ash/L Mg. Vol. Sol.fL
Sta. 7-25C 8-8C 8-SN 7-25C 8-8C 8-SN 7-25C 8-SC 8-SN
1 9.8 14.6 11.8 4A 6.8 3.0 5.4 7.8 8.8
2 10.6 14.4 8.6 5.4 4.6 2.0 5.2 9.8 6.6
3 4.8 6.4 7.2 2.0 2.8 1.2 2.8 3.6 6.0
C—Centrifuged sample N—Net plankton Vol. Sol.—volatile solids

Segments of lake bottom core samples may be analyzed microscopically
to determine the diatom composition of the layered segments. To examine
diatomaceous sediments in lake bed core sediments, an aliquot solids sam-
pie based on a packed volume of a selected core segment is oven-dried,
suspended in equal parts of water and concentrated nitric acid, gently
boiled for 45 minutes, and allowed to cool. Potassium dichromate crystals
(0.1 gram) are added, the mixture cooled, washed into a centrifuge tube,
and water added. The sample is washed 3 times by alternately centrifug-
ing, decanting, and adding water. The inorganic residue is then diluted to
a specific volume of water (200 ml. per gram of original sample), then
2 drops of liquid household detergent are added, the sample is stirred, and
2 drops of sample are withdrawn by a large bore pipette and placed on a
cover slip. The sample on the cover slip is evaporated to dryness on a hot
plate. Following drying the hot plate temperature is increased to 350° F,
a clean microscopic slide is placed thereon, and a large drop of suitable
microscopic mounting media such as Harleco* or Styrax* is placed on the
slide. After 10 minutes. with slight cooling, the cover slip with the dried
sample is inverted onto the mounting medium drop and pressed firmly
into place. The slide is then examined for diatom skeletons.
Reporting of the findings is equally as important as any other aspect of
problem solving. A report represents the end product of the investiga-
tion. It is often the only link between the field investigation, which may
take considerable time, money, and effort, and the public or particular re-
port recipient. A report often recommends corrective actions to abate a
problem, and these abatement efforts are necessary for the advancement of
society. Thus, the report may be the most important part of a particular
investigation, particularly because of the effect that it can have on broad
political changes that may be focused on a problem area.
A report has certain basic yet essential features. The first of these is the
title page, or cover, listing the author(s) and the responsible agency or
where the report may be obtained. The titie should not be too long but it
should identify precisely the report contents. The second feature involves
the summary, conclusions, recommendations and predictions, which are
usually placed near the front of the report for ease in finding and value in
display. The third basic component involves the report narrative, which
includes the display of data, such as charts and figures and the discussion.
The last is the report appendix.
The report introduction should describe briefly the problem and its lo-
cation, the study objectives, the inclusive dates of the investigation, the
authority for the study. and by whom the study was performed. It may re-
* Mention of commercial products does not constitute endorsement by the Feder-
al Water Pollution Control Administration.

late briefly the methods used to conduct the study, but generally such de-
scriptions should be placed in the appendix, particularly when they are
lengthy and include nonstandard ones. The introduction is often placed
near the front of the report, and is followed by the summary.
The summary, conclusions, iecommendations, and predictions may be
the only parts of the report that are read by many of the report audience.
These sections represent a condensation of the entire study; they should
be drafted with great care.
When not preceded by the introduction, the first paragraph within the
summary should introduce the study and should identify what was stud-
ied, where the study took place, who made the study and when, and what
the study objectives were. The summary should briefly and concisely re-
late how the study was accomplished and what was found in the investiga-
tion. The entire summary should be as brief as possible and yet contain
these essential facts. Stringent review and editing should always be em-
ployed. The summary should contain those particular facts that will be
used to formulate conclusions. The language of the summary should be
specific, and numerical data to substantiate or explain particular state-
ments should be given where appropriate.
The conclusions should be concise, positive, lucid statements that relate
what may be concluded from the summarized data and other observa-
tions. There is often a difference of opinion among report writers regard-
ing the numbering of thoughts or paragraphs within the conclusions.
From the standpoint of conciseness and adherence to a particular thought,
it is helpful to number conclusions in consecutive order, at least initially.
After these have been edited and re-edited the numbers may be removed
without harm to the text material. Many writers prefer to retain the num-
bers. The report narrative and the data it contains must support the con-
clusions. The conclusions in turn must support the recommendations, and
each recommendation should have a supporting conclusion.
Recommendations should be preferably numbered in consecutive order
and developed with great care and sound logic. Recommendations repre-
sent the groundwork towards abatement or problem correction.
Predictions may or may not be within the investigation’s objectives.
They are of great value to the report’s reading audience, however, to as-
certain that water quality which is expected to be attained when all rec-
ommendations are met, when 50 percent or 30 percent of the recommen-
dations are completed, or if no action is taken as a result of the
investigation. Such predictions might well follow that section of the report
devoted to recommendations.
The narrative within the report body supports the summary, conclu-
sions. and recommendations. Its structure can be enhanced, and omissions
avoided, by a carefully prepared outline listing all necessary items in logi-
cal continuity.

The area description section should include a general area location
map, as well as a specific map of the study reach showing stations sam-
pled, principal population centers and principal waste sources. Back-
ground information on municipal and industrial development and land use
is helpful here.
The water uses section describes in informative detail those uses associ-
ated with:
(a) Municipalities,
(b) Fish propagation and production,
(c) Recreation,
(d) Industrial water supply,
(e) Navigation.
(f) Irrigation, and
(g) Hydropower.
Monetary damages resulting from existing or predicted water quality
associated with these uses. and benefits from recommendations made
shoàld be noted where possible.
The waste sources section discusses wastes entering the waterway in-
(a) Municipal,
(b) Industrial, and
(c) Aczricultural.
Measured or computed waste loads to specific stream reaches, with item-
ized particular wastewater constituents where possible, should be ascribed
to each major waste source described specifically and separately.
The effects of pollution on water quality and uses include the findings
of fact and their discussion, analyses and interpretation. This is the report
section that bears the major burden of support for the conclusions and
recommendations. Its principal discussions center around various water
quality standards and specifically bacterial pollution, aquatic life in all its
many facets, and aesthetic considerations. Featured within this section are
data display and data interpretation.
Organizing the data entails graphs, photographs, and tables. Here a
spark of ingenuity and imagination will reap great rewards. Often a report
is “sold” by the manner in which data are organized and presented. Data
first are arranged in tables. Lengthy, detailed tables should be placed in
the report appendix—if placed in the narrative, they detract from reading
coherency. Easy-to-follow summary tables, prepared as a digest of the
tabulated data in the appendix. are helpful in the narrative to explain and
substantiate discussion and conclusions.
Relationships among particular components within the data or trends
among stream reaches of particular water quality components may be

shown as graphs. Graphs should be uncluttered, pertinent, and easy to
follow. Broad lines to illustrate trends are preferred. Should the reader
wish to verify a particular value at a given point, he will consult the de-
tailed tables. Graphs should “picture” important information and be used
sparingly only to underscore principal points.
In developing a report, do not say that certain information may be
found in Table X or Figure Y, because this type of statement does not
give the reader any vital information. Rather, make a positive factual
statement using pertinent data within the sentence to substantiate the
statement, and refer to the appropriate table or figure parenthetically as a
source to substantiate the data used and to gain additional information.
Jnterpret for the reader. Do not expect the reader to interpret tabular data
or figures without help from the report narrative. ft is always the readers
prerogative to agree or disagree with the writer’s interpretations.
Data interpretation gives meaning and vitality to the report. Interpreta-
tion is a clear statement of what is meant by what was found.
What is the problem?
Why is it a problem?
What is the cause?
What are the effects?
What corrections can be instituted?
Where should these be made?
When should corrections be initiated, and completed?
Data interpretation includes an evaluation of visible observations, of fac-
tors such as the physical drift of organisms into the sampling station from
a tributary or an area unaffected by pollution. and of organism population
trends throughout the study reach. Other studies often are cited to sub-
stantiate the writer’s findings or to show that other investigators have
found similar, or different, phenomena under comparable circumstances.
Citations from other works should be adequately and correctly referenced.
Unless the report is a literature search, literature citations should be re-
served for important points that can be made more positive or more clear
with additional clarification or substantiation from an outside source.
The report appendix is the proper recipient of long or complex tables,
charts or tables listing scientific names, discussions of methods or proce-
dures, descriptions of special studies performed to ascertain particular
facts described in report narrative, and elaborate calculations. These ma-
terials should not detract from the reading of the report narrative by
being placed within it.
An appropriate report cover should be designed that will wrap the
package suitably to present to the reader.
The writer should read aloud his report to ascertain illogical ap-
proaches and flaws in rhythm. This procedure may be the greatest aid to

self-editing. Good technical writing is clear and concise and omits need-
less words. The specific word should be chosen instead of the general, the
definite word instead of the vague, the concrete word instead of the ab-
stract. Qualifying words should be avoided! Rarely is there more than one
proper word to express a particular idea. A discriminate writer will search
for that word, and when it is found he will profit thereby.
Finally the report should be submitted to an associate whose judgment
is respected for review (Mackenthun. 1969). When a report is submitted
to a reviewer, both writer and reviewer assume certain specific obliga-
tions. The writer should submit his report for review only after complet-
ing his own revision as discussed.
The writer has an obligation to inform the reviewer of the report’s pur-
pose and its expected audience. Ts the purpose of the report to inform
generally? To establish a specific fact in the literature? To establish poli-
cy? To interpret data? To serve as a basis for conference or litigation in
resolving a particular problem? Will the audience be the general lay pub-
lic, people technically trained in the report’s subject. or will it represent a
mixture of several technical skills and varied interests?
The writer is obligated to:
(a) Strive for the best in manuscript preparation, placing it in final
form as talents permit:
(b) Be meticulous about data accuracy , grammar, punctuation, and
(c) Develop the report for the reading level of the report’s audi-
(d) Forward a minimum of two manuscript copies to each reviewer
—it may be desirable for the reviewer to retain one and return
one with comments in the report margin to the writer; and
(e) Avoid writing down everything that has been done with the ex-
pectation that their viewer will cut, organize, and reconstruct
the manuscript.
The writer should prepare himself mentally for critical review com-
ments. Remember, the reviewer usually attempts at all times to be helpful
and constructive. A “no comment’ reviewer most likely has not fulfilled
his obligation and is of no help to the writer.
A proper review entails consideration of the technical message. as well
as the manner in which the message is presented. A review can be edi-
torial only, but rarely can a technical review disregard the editorial
aspects. Good granimer and technical competence usually are inseparable.
A technical reviewer reads a document for clarity, technical accuracy, and
to determine whether a dual meaning is present th the written word:
The reviewer is obligated to:
(a) Consider the purpose the report is designed to fulfill;
(b) Be constructive, thorough, and helpful with comments;

(c) Be certain of his own accuracy in suggesting changes;
(d) Base comments on the technical level and interests of report au-
(e) Avoid sarcasm, argument, or destruction of the writer’s style for
the sake of expression in the reviewer’s words; and
(f) Appreciate that the purpose of the review is to help the writer
produce a better report.
Following a field study with its report including conclusions, recom-
mendations, and predictions, there is urgent need to ascertain the correct-
ness and value of those recommendations and predictions. Assuming that
the proffered recommendations are feasible technically and monetarily.
their value should be demonstrated through appropriate action. Far too
many studies are terminated with a report. Technical advancement can
best be made by effecting sound and logical demonstrations to determine
the correctness of particular recommendations and predictions. Through
time, and using the investigative report and implemented demonstrations
as a basis of fact, future investigators can adapt and modify their recom-
mendations and predictions to answer future problems in an improved

IJ SING selected portions of past field investigations as examples, it will
be shown in this and succeeding chapters how various water quality
constituents can affect aquatic life and how this type of information can
be presented to those not intimately familiar with the biological discipline.
Me,zorninee River
In early August 1963, a field study. limited to 1 2 days. was made on
the Brule and Menominee rivers separating Michigan from Wisconsin.*
The Brule River rises in northern Wisconsin near the eastern edge of a
popular recreational area dotted with many natural lakes. It flows through
Wisconsin in an easterly direction becoming the boundary between Michi-
gan and Wisconsin. Downstream the Brule joins the Michigamme River
to form the Menominee River. which continues as the states boundary
flowing in a southeasterly direction for about 115 miles to the Menomi-
nee, Michigan-Marinette. Wisconsin, area where it enters the Green Bay
arm of Lake Michigan (figure 18).
The Brule and Menominee rivers pass through a gently rolling, thickly
wooded valley, which exhibits a restful scenic beauty. The virgin white
pine forests of the valley, which once provided a major national source of
white pine lumber, have largely been replaced by the attractive quaking
aspen. interspaced with groups of a variety of conifers and an occasional
The cool, s ;ift waters of the upper reaches of the Brule River provide
an ideal habitat for trout; the warmer waters of the Menominee support
sturgcon. wallcye. bass. bluegill, and other sport fishes. Between Florcnce,
Wis.. and the Memominee-Marinette area there are eleven dams that im-
* Report on Pollution of the Interstate \Vaters of the Menominee and Brule Riv-
ers. Michigan-Wisconsin. by A. W. West. K. N I. Mackenthun. L. E. Keup and F. W.
Ki ltrell. U.S. Department of Health. Education and Welfare, Public Health Service,
Robert A. Taft Sanitary Engineering Center, Cincinnati, Ohio. November 1963.

‘I ,
L .J
0 0 tO 20
Figure 18. Location map for the Brule
Wisconsin -Michigan.
and Menominee Rivers,
pound run-of-the-river pools on the Menominee River. During the 12
days of the survey * the mean daily river discharges averaged 300 cubic
feet per second (c.f.s.) at the mouth of the Brule River, 1,200 c.f.s. in the
upper \lenominee River and 1.400 c.f.s. in the downstream reaches of
the Menominee. In addition to sewage effluent representing various de-
grees of treatment, the rivers received pollutants from important industrial
operations including iron ore, pulp and paper, and organic chemicals.
The Brute River received from its tributary, the Iron River, the acid
mine drainage from four iron mines and the effluents from four municipal
sewage treatment plants. About 1 year prior to the study the Iron River
had received gross acid mine drainage pollution.
F o .nce
N or w a

The Brule River stream bed was composed of rock, rubble, and gravel
with occasional sand. The current was swift and water depths ranged
from 6 inches to 2 feet in areas sampled. Samples of stream bed associ-
ated organisms were collected in a 20-mile stream reach. Findings indi-
cated that conditions upstream from the confluence of the Iron and Brule
rivers were adequate to support a bottom organism community that is
typically associated with unpolluted water including stoneflies. riffle bee-
tles, may flies. and caddisflies. Downstream from this confluence. many or-
ganisms sensitive o adverse conditions were reduced drastically in popu-
lation while those organisms that were able to secure their food supply
,- ,00
• 150
100 -
E 50
Cadd lsfhss
LII Nay?
Figure 19. Populations of selected benthic organisms in the Brule River, 1963.

while living in close association with a dense growth of filamentous green
algae prospered in numbers (figure 19).
In the Kingsford-Iron Mountain, Mich., area, samples for bottom asso-
ciated organisms were taken at river mile 96.4. 200 yards downstream
from the sewage treatment plant, and in Upper Quinnesec reservoir at mi-
leage 93.7 (figure 20). Upstream from the organic waste source, there
was a balanced bottom dwelling community with many organisms sensi-
tive towards pollution and relatively few tolerant sludgeworms or other
organism types that tolerate and thrive in organic wastes (figure 21).
In the biological data display for this report, three very broad organism
classifications were used. These consisted of those sensitive organisms in-
cluding immature stoneflies, caddisflies, mayflies. riffle beetles and hell-
grammites; those organisms very tolerant towards organic wastes
including sludgeworms. several species of midges with ventral blood gills.
the pond leech Helobdella stagnalis (Linnaeus). and worm-like organisms
that are associated closely with this group; and a large group of organisms
Mc l i
56 6 Chalk HdI Dam
Figure 20. Sampling station location map for the Menominee River.
055 T r Foils Dam
ro i Mo jntør — Kings? ord
91 8
Niagara, W.ic.
81 3
74 4
5 0 5 10

Figure 21. Bottom organism populations—Iron Mountain-Kingsford area,
Menominee River, August, 1963.
that are termed tolerant because they are not now known to fit either of
the other two groups.
The display of biological data in the aforementioned manner is very
effective because the dramatic environmental change in the very few
stream miles from a point upstream from the waste source to the upper-
most reaches of a receiving reservoir is largely self-evident (figure 21).
The clean water associated forms decreased from a plentiful population
that would furnish food for an abundant fish population to zero in three
successive stations. Likewise, pollution tolerant organisms increased at the
same three stations from barely discernible numbers to 950 per square
foot, which is representative of a waterway bed covered with organic
To ascertain effects on sluggish water environments from Niagara,
\Vis.. area pollution, bottom samples were collected from two reservoirs
bracketing the area at river miles 89.7 and 81.3 respectively (figure 22).
The population of bottom associated organisms found in the uppermost
reservoir was considered typical for a clean water environment with a well
diversified organism complex containing caddisifies and mayffies. The or-
LI Sinsitlys
‘gan isms
_______ Vsry Tolsrant
) 00

0- — — —
Figure 22. Comparison of bottom organism populations in two upper
Menominee River reservoirs.
ganism assemblage in the Sturgeon Falls reservoir downstream was one
depicting a polluted environment. Sensitive forms were eliminated; pollu-
tion tolerant forms were greatly increased compared to the upstream res-
ervoir. Sludge and wood chips were found in areas of reduced current;
wood fibers and slime bacteria were present.
Surber (1957) conducted a survey of lake reports and found that
0 !
‘ a
(* lb lb
= E
C C.) —
U) U)
I .
0 E

• . an abundance of tubificids in excess of 100 per square foot appar-
ently truly represented polluted habitats.” After more than a decade, this
interpretative observation still seems sound.
That portion studied in the Lower Menominee River encompassed just
slightly more than 3’ miles. An unpolluted environment was indicated at
the upstream sampling station where sensitive burrowing mayffies were
plentiful (figure 23). Downstream from the first organic waste source a
Figure 23. Populations of bottom associated organisms, lower Menominee
River. August. 1963.
Sinitivs Ocqan sms
z z z
Vary Tolirant Organisms

polluted habitat was found on the waste source side and a habitat only
slightly defiled was found near the opposite bank, because of waste chan-
neling in the receiving stream. Downstream from the waste source, sludge
deposits, wood chips, wood fibers, and slime bacteria occasionally boiled
to the surface as a mass, creating an unsightly and odoriferous condition,
gradually dispersing and sinking at some point downstream to reform a
sludge deposit and extend, physically, the zone of active decomposition.
When pulp and paper wastes had become fully mixed with the receiv-
ing waters, sensitive clean water organisms were eliminated from the pol-
luted habitat as were those in the intermediate tolerant group. Only the
pollution tolerant sludgeworms and bloodworms were found among wood
chips, fibers, and slimes. The population of these increased downstream
from sewage treatment plant waste sources, but decreased markedly
downstream near the rivefs mouth because of toxic components within
the sludge.
It is to be noted that in figures 19. 21, 22. and 23, biological data are
presented clearly and concisely. and in a form that a layman can under-
stand readily. The figures are not cluttered with too much detail and the
bars in graphs are broad and easily distinguishable one from another to
permit easy recognition of population trends and broad, significant differ-
ences among sampling areas. Data depicted for a particular station repre-
sented the average of samples taken at that station.
Blacksione River
The Blackstone River begins in the southern part of Worcester, Massa-
chusetts, and flows in a southeasterly direction for 42 miles to Pawtucket,
R.I., then southerly for 7 miles to its mouth at the Seekonk River. Princi-
pal tributaries include the Mumford and West Rivers from Massachusetts,
and the Branch River from Rhode Island. Water quality data were ob-
tained from field studies conducted during March and August, 1964.*
The Blackstone River drains an area of 540 square miles; its fall aver-
ages about 10 feet per mile. Formerly it tumbled over many rocky rapids,
but these have long been buried beneath impoundments to create power.
The first use of the water power of the Blacksione took place in 1671 and
by the early 1700 ’s many grist and sawmills were furnished power by low
head dams in the basin. Some of these dams have been abandoned, but
more than 30 still exist.
The most significant types of wastes in the Blackstone River drainage
area are municipal sewage and woolen textile wastes. At the time of the
survey, the river was receiving biochemical oxygen demanding sewage
* Report on Pollution of Interstate Waters of the Blacksione and Ten Mile Riv-
ers, Mass.-R.1. K. M. Mackenthun, A. W. West, R. K. Ballentine, and F. W. Kit-
trell. U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Robert A. Taft Sanitary
Engineering Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, January 1965.

wastes trom a popuiation equivaient to ‘i,uuu persons. rorty-tnree per-
cent of this organic load was introduced where the stream was relatively
small near its headwaters, and where wastewater impact on aquatic life
would be expected to be most noticeable. Recreational use and all fishery
pursuits were severely limited because of organic pollution.
The suitability of the Blackstone River to support aquatic life at the
time of the studs’ was dramatically illustrated in figure 24 and 25 where
the low organism diversity in upstream reaches corresponded with high
populations of pollution tolerant organisms, principally sludgeworms.
Near the river’s headwaters, sludge deposits, oily substances, and slime
growths supported over 20,000 sludgeworms per square foot. The sludge
worm population increased in numbers following the introduction of sew-
age treatment plant wastes and then gradually decreased downstream as
stream self-purification took place. Before the population could be dimin-
ished to a reasonable level (less than 100 per square foot) another source
of organic waste was introduced to boost again the sludgeworm popula-
tion. At river mile 2 (figure 25) a tributary carrying variously colored
wool fibers and other materials introduced toxic materials into the Black-
stone River that reduced bottom organism populations. Extensive sludge
deposits, floatin balls of fibers that were microscopically identified as
being wool impregnated with grease. and slimes on bottom materials were
50 40 +30
20 t 10 RIVER MILE 0
Figure 24. Kinds of bottom organisms, Blackstone River, August, 1964.

1000 -
_ II - . --
50 f 30 20 I RIVER 0
Figure 25. Numbers of pollution-tolerant bottom organisms per square
foot, Blackstone River, August, 1964.
Wisconsin River
An intermittent I 1-year biological study of the stream bottom life of
the Wisconsin River. Wis., indicated no marked differences in bottom
conditions at a given station among any of the years under investigation.*
Prolific growths of filamentous bacterial slimes occurred in several stream
reaches during both summer and winter periods. Unsuitable bottom habi-
tats for organisms were created because of severely decreased dissolved
oxygen and the blanketing effects of settleable solids and bacterial slimes.
The area studied extended from mile 360 to mile 190 (figure 26).
* Mackenthun, K. M. 1961. The Impact of Pollution Upon Stream Biota in the
Wisconsin River. 19 pp., mimeo.

3S0 —
340— —I
330— —I
320 —s —$
310— i
300 —$
290 —
290 —
270— 0 —‘ WAI/SA(I
260 —
2,0 Q
240 —
220 —
• —S
• —s
200— 0 — ,i(KOOSA
• — pup U lI$
o — S. oge P u
$ — SompIua9 So’ o’ s
190-360- Pie’ Miss
Figure 26. Wisconsin River profile with mileage designations, pollution
sources, and sampling stations.
The long-term average flow for the several stations of record on the
Wisconsin River is shown on the dilution chart (figure 27). The 50 per-
cent duration alue for the section under consideration ranges from slight-
Jy less than 1,000 c.f.s. at Rhinelander to slightly more than 3,000 c.f.s.
at Nekoosa. Other things being equal, a given load discharged to a stream

E° -
o r
r) O
_ C
. r —
1 •— <—.
) — — C
— — — p.-

o C
-4 —
•- —

— ° a
a C)
c r r ;:-
p - I f —
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Cr ••=
c, r Q
‘l rt - c -
f- P
) C, .)

P .J . )
—. f-+
0 —
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q- p )
_• Q.’ f-p
00 (D < )
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c i
Q_ 0 0 0
-— 0
• ow.
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— — —
— —
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I Mile;
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Figure 27. Wisconsin River Dilution Chart

(figure 28). A similar paucity of sensitive organisms existed downstream
from Brokaw for a distance of about 45 miles. Along with the species
abundance shown as the number, the relative population abundance in
number per square foot and the population characteristic shown as the
percentage of the population abundance were depicted in this chart. Much
can be said for such a presentation from the standpoint of careful inter-
pretation of graphic materials, but the presentation is somewhat cluttered
with too much detail and is difficult for the general reader to follow. In-
deed, the August data were presented in similar fashion for 5 years for
the entire river reach studied and the results of this presentation attempt
precluded suitable reduction to picture here.
In general, the March biological data showed a slight reduction in bot-
tom organism species abundance and some reduction in the population
abundance. There was a general tendency to have a greater proportion of
the population comprised of very tolerant forms. Especially in the areas
upstream from Merrill and Brokaw, a reduction was noted in both species
number and population abundance of the clean water forms. These two
areas were influenced by the effects of upstream pollution during the win-
ter months with a subsequent growth of filamentous bacteria that covered
the bottom formations. Consequently, these areas fluctuated between peri-
ods of degradation in the winter and recovery during the summer. Thus,
sampling beneath the ice in late winter showed that the zone of active de-
composition had moved downstream from the source of organic pollution
during winter. A stream reach that appeared unpolluted during summer
supported growths of Sphaeroiilus and associated bacteria with a reduc-
tion in sensitive organisms during winter.
A slightly earlier (1958) effort to display some of the same data was
even more complicated, graphically (figure 29). A tremendous amount
of data are shown in this figure: Stream mileages, major cities, location of
dams, location of pulp and paper mills, organism numbers, percentages of
sensitive, tolerant, and very tolerant organism numbers, zones of pollu-
tion, and variations among 4 years of sampling! Depicting the stream
zones of pollution has merit for public interpretation providing sufficient
explanatory material is presented. But, it is difficult, if not impossible, to
present so much information graphically in clear understandable fashion
on one page—interpretation would be challenging even to the professional.
South Platte Rh’er
Wastewaters entering the South Platte River in Denver, Cob., are of
mixed origin.* They come from municipal treatment facilities, industries,
* From “Effects of Pollution on the Aquatic Life Resources of the South Platte
River Basin.” South Platte River Basin Project. Denver, Cob., and Technical Advi-
sory and Investigations Branch, Cincinnati, Ohio, Federal Water Pollution Control
Administration, U.S. Department of the Interior. December 1967, prepared by Low-
ell E. Keup.

320 5
311 3
0 5 10
MILES ‘r(AQ 0 5 0
0 5 0 I 10 100
3443 HINEI.
3’• 4
‘93. —
40 —
32 .7 i 5s —
40 —
1 95 1 —
60 —
1551 —
60 —
255$ 54$
213.1 M( ILL
27 1,2 110$
S Ok 4W
560 —
560 —
23 1.S 156 —
40 —
211.0 155$ —
so —
1.000 10.000 0
50 100
00 100
50 00
Figure 28. Wisconsin River bottom fauna—March data.

—— ___ .- __ ___ — — — ———— —
- !
/_\ f\
/ \ , \:
/ L
i ‘T’
- ¶
.t—i —

1__ .__ , ”—. . .—
i-c- • 4H

a.... •; — ilhiflhl
—1 -’
I :
: ‘,

A: :


- \ /

, ‘ -.-•,.
it”! ‘ ——L— . i
Iz . s’ • I fl
: -:: :: —
I liii
[ :..; I I
I I I I 1 I I I I1T 1
-- — — - — — —
— — — — — — — — —
0 -
% l lc.’ 0s
% T. S .. .’ Oil.
• ———— % Viry tours .? C?,,
, 0’ 5 ••i i ft
0— 5 .0
- •0
S t
________ DiG a0a.QN
Figure 29. Biotic conditions in the Wisconsin River during August.
cattle holding pens, storm sewers, and polluted tributaries. The major pol-
lutant is organic solid materials, both suspended and settled. Other pollu-
tants are present, but their effects are masked by the preponderant or-
ganic materials.
Excessive quamities of organic wastes, undergoing rapid decomposi-
tion. alter the chemical characteristics of the waterway by producing large

quantities of sulfides, methane and other products of decomposition, and
by reducing the quantity of dissolved oxygen. The settleable solids settle
to the stream bottom forming organic rich sludgebeds that “blanket” the
original bottom of gravel, rubble, or soil thereby altering the physical
environment. These chemical and physical changes are not tolerated
by sensitive organisms such as the aquatic stages of stoneflies, may-
fics, and caddisflies, that are found in unpolluted habitats. Surviving
pollution tolerant animals, such as sludgeworms, bloodworms, leeches and
sewage ifies increase in numbers because of a lack of competition from
the eliminated forms. Sludgebeds may produce a large increase in num-
bers because they increase the habitable area and the available food for
these “aquatic manure worms.” Pollution may become so severe that even
these relatively tolerant forms may be reduced in numbers or eliminated.
Figure 30 illustrates the elimination of sensitive bottom animals and the
rapid increase in the population of pollution tolerant organisms in May as
the river enters the city of Denver. In August, 1964, near the confluence
of Cherry Creek and at Platteville sludgeworm numbers were 38,000 and
19,500 per square foot, respectively.
During May and August. from the York Street bridge downstream to
Fort Lupton, Cob., pollution by decomposing organics was severe
enough to reduce pollution tolerant organisms (figure 30). At Franklin
Street, the large quantity of decomposing organic material sufficiently low-
ered water quality so that even pollution tolerant organisms were elimi-
nated. Here, the stream bed was covered with sludges, estimated at
45.000 tons wet weight. which were obviously rotting cow manure and un-
doubtedly originated from the cattle holding pens along this river reach.
After flowing 40 miles, the river recovered enough to allow large num-
bers of pollution tolerant sludgeworms and bloodworms to reappear in the
bottom sludges at Platteville, Cob. (figure 30). In August large red
patches of sludgeworms (19,500 per square foot) could be seen here on
top of the sludge deposits. Filamentous slime growths were less extensive
than they were upstream. Within a short distance from Platteville, much
of this polluted water was diverted for irrigation and the areas down-
stream from here were influenced more by pollution from local sources
than from the Denver Metropolitan Area.
East Pearl River
A diverse population of bottom fauna was found in the East and West
Hobolochitto creeks and in Farr’s Slough upstream from pollutional ef
fects from Picayune, Miss., on the East Pearl River.* At one station,
more than 40 species of bottom fauna were found (figure 31). Down-
* From Report on Pollution of Interstate Waters of the Pearl and East Pearl Riv-
ers, L.-Miss., U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Robert A. Taft
Sanitary Engineering Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Region IV Office, Atlanta, Ga.,
September 1963.

Figure 30. Populations of bottom animals, South Platte River, Denver
Metropolitan Area, May, 1964.
stream from Picayune. and the discharge of a chemical company, biologi-
cal samples showed distinct adverse effects from pollution on the stream
bottom. Species numbers were reduced to four in this reach compared to
upstream reaches where more than 10 and often 20 species were found.
Pollution tolerant sludgeworms and blood worms increased here, sensitive
mayffies and caddisifies were absent but were plentiful at upstream sta-
tions, and bacterial slimes were obvious on higher aquatic plants and
other supporting objects. The stream recovered rapidly and samples from
stations downstream indicated a fauna rich in diversity again.
In late September, 1962, the chemical company discharged wastes toxic
to aquatic life and a se ere fish kill resulted that extended for at least 17
s srrivi OR$ANISMS

Figure 31. Species of bottom fauna per station, East Pearl River, 1962.
miles. Gar, game fish, minnows, eels, mullets, and even sturgeon were
killed. Most of the bottom dwelling animals were also killed in the af-
fected area. Where before there were four species found upstream from
Picayune, none was found soon after the chemical release. At the subse-
quent three downstream stations, 23. 26, and 25. species were found at
each station, respectively, prior to the chemical release and these included
stonefly naiads. mavflv naiads. caddisfly larvae. heligrammittes. and the
more tolerant associates. After the chemical release that caused the fish
kill, nine, five, and three species were found at these stations, respectively.
Surviving organisms included a pulmonate snail. bloodworms. beetle lar-
vae, tolerant damselfly and dragonfly nalads, and sludgeworms at one sta-
tion. Toxic materials are considered in greater detail in Chapter VII.
Bor n

Coosa River System
THE Coosa River, formed by the confluence of the Etowah and Oostan-
aula rivers in Rome, Ga., flows westerly across Georgia into Alabama
(Figure 32). Etowah River investigations began just downstream from
Allatoona Dam near Cartersville, Ga.; they extended downstream to the
confluence with the Oostanaula River in Rome , Ga., and continued in the
Coosa River to Lake Weiss, Ala.*
Process wastes from mineral, chemical and textile industries, and raw
domestic sewage were discharged to the Etowah River in the vicinity of
Cartersville, Ga. During the August survey, silts from mining operations
were carried downstream into the Coosa River and across the Georgia-Al-
abama State line.
In the upstream Etowah River study reach, flow was 300 c.f.s. for
about 17 hours of the day; it climbed rapidly to a 7,300 c.f.s. peak at
12:15 p.m. and subsided again for the next 6 hours according to Alla-
toona Dam turbine operating schedules. Just upstream from the mouth of
the Etowah River, flows ranged from 700 to 4,500 c.f.s. flow in the Oos-
tanaula River in Rome normally ranged between 800 and 1,000 c.f.s. ex-
cept for an early morning low when the water surface elevations at the
mouth were influenced by peak Etowah River flows. The more regular
undulating flow pattern in the Coosa River reflected the combined flow
characteristics of both the Etowah and Oostanaula rivers and ranged from
about 2,000 to 4,600 c.f.s. diurnally.
The dominant pollution discharged to the Etowah River was silt. One
ore processing company discharged 500 tons of mineral washing waste
solids per day to the river a short distance downstream from Allatoona
Dam. Other sources of silt pollution included road bank erosion and soil
* Report on Coosa River System, Georgia-Alabama. U.S. Department of Health,
Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Robert A. Taft Sanitary Engineering
Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, January 1963.

Figure 32. Location map and sampling stations on Coosa River system, Jabama-Georiga.

The color and turbidity in the Etowah River increased sharply around
11:30 a.m., about one-half hour after the turbines in Allatoona Dam
were opened. During the next hour, stream suspended solids increased to
900 mg./1. peaks, and the color turned deep reddish-tan as most of the
waste solids, which had been deposited the previous evening, were resus-
pended and flushed downstream. The suspended solids concentration sub-
sided from about 12:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and remained at or below 25
mg./l. during the next 20 hours of the daily cycles. The arithmetic average
from 120 samples in a 24—hour suspended solids concentration study was
52 mg./1.; this calculated to 550 tons of suspended solids per day (figure
33). The entire Etowah River downstream from Allatoona Dam and the
Coosa River to Lake Weiss were kept highly turbid because of their silt
A study of stream bed organisms indicated that deposition of silt and
other particulate materials on the stream bed affected the quantitative and
qualitative distribution of the benthos. The processes of erosion or of
mining debris deposition increased greatly the relative proportion of finer
materials in the stream bed and reduced the number of usable habitats in
which organisms may live. These deposits were principally inorganic, and
the combined impact of deposition and the abrasive action of the sand
carried by strong currents was so great that the characteristic population
response to organic wastes discharged at several points was not observed,
except in the reach just downstream from Rome, Georgia.
Only a few organisms, mostly sludgeworms and midges, were able to
survive in the silt-laden Etowah River (figure 34). The penstock dis-
charge, deep in Allatoona Reservoir, was very low in dissolved oxygen re-
sulting in a bottom organism population restricted to a very few tolerant
forms. Crenothrix and other iron bacteria deposited a reddish-brown floc
over much of the vegetation and portions of the near shore stream bed. A
short distance downstream, the silty mineral washing wastewaters were
discharged creating a restrictive habitat for most aquatic life. Limited
numbers of sensitive organisms such as aquatic stages of mayflies and
hellgrammites were restricted to the few remaining shallow riffles where
the effects of silt pollution were least pronounced. The Coosa River also
was very turbid and the population of stream bed organisms was only
slightly enhanced over that found in the Etowah River. This study again
demonstrated the adverse effects of silt and sand deposition upon the
biota, both in restricting species diversity and also in limiting organism
production to low numbers.
The three dimensional charts used to display the data in figures 34
and 35 are not well understood by the nonprofessional report reader; they
should be used with caution. There is too often the tendency to display
too much data on one page with confusion the result that ends in frustra-
lion and despair for the reader making the interpretation. As with most
graphs, the three dimensional presentation is most effective to illustrate a


minimal number of projections where trends can be noted easily without
undue effort expended in interpretation. Figure 35, especially, does not
meet this basic requirement.
Samples for planktonic algal determinations were collected from a
depth of 2 feet at three locations in the Etowah River and four locations
in the Coosa River (figure 35). A short distance downstream from Lake
Allatoona, the waters in the Etowah River were very clear with 10 per-
cent of the incident light remaining at the bottom in 60 inches. Planktonic
algae had not had time to develop fully at this point. Five genera of algae
other than diatoms and nine species of diatoms were found. Twenty-five
miles downstream in the reach exposed to the effects of silt turbidity, the
planktonic algal population was low (126 cells per ml.) and the genera of
algae other than diatoms was reduced to two. Here, 1 percent of the inci-
dent light remained in only 26 inches of water. Because the algal popula-
tion, which could affect light transmission through increased turbidity,
was very low at this station, the low transparency was attributed to the in-
organic silt load. The potential for algal development here was restricted
to about 2 feet by the availability of light, and further was hampered by
the adverse physical actions of sands and silts on algal cells.
The Oostanaula River, which joins the Etowah River at Rome, Ga.,
Figure 33. Total suspended solids in tons/day in Coosa River system.

TOTAL SPECIES _______________
(No/sq ft x 10)
Figure 34. Population of stream bed associated organisms in Coosa River system, 1963.

5 .—— — - —
I — ,— s—..
O -• k
,— ,q”$ij
— -- ,-
‘ e 0
250 DIATOMS / ml
t j - I inch OF MAX. RED SILT DEPOSfl
‘ 0
Figure 35. Algal population, light transmission and silt deposits, Coosa River system, Iabarna.Ge0rgia.

was used as a control environment unaffected by silt pollution other than
land runoff. Here, the planktonic algal population was 10 times more
abundant than at any place sampled in the Etowah River; 10 algal genera
excluding diatoms were found.
Whenever possible, control stations should be located upstream on the
same stream in which pollutional effects from waste sources are being ob-
served. Occasionally this is not possible or practical as in the study of the
Etowah River because of the presence of Lake Allatoona. In these cases,
control stations may be selected on other streams within the same drain-
age basin and, as nearly as possible, with morphometric features similar
to those of the study stream.
Light transmission was restricted in the Coosa River, and since the al-
gal population was low, silt was the contributing factor. The depth of
effective light penetration gradually increased downstream in the Coosa
until at the State line 1 percent of the incident light, considered adequate
for algal development, remained at a depth of 48 inches and 2.5 percent
of the incident light, which is generally considered adequate for rooted
aquatic plant development, remained at 37 inches.
Samples from a station near the center of Lake Weiss yielded the great-
est algal population found during the survey (8,383 cells per ml.), as well
as the deepest light transmission zone with 1 percent of the incident light
penetrating to a depth of 65 inches.
Results of an electrofishing survey of 1-hour duration each on the Oos-
tanaula River, the Coosa River 2 miles downstream from Rome, Ga., and
the Coosa River near the State line were comparable with a similar num-
ber of game fish being observed at each station. Thus, no effects from silt
on the catchable fish population were demonstrated by this investigation.
Observations indicated that heavier silts and sands continually rolled
downstream in the Etowah River, temporarily settling above riffle areas
and becoming resuspended immediately below them as the current pushed
the particles over the riffles. This phenomenon produced a muddy water
appearance below shallow obstructions in the main channel. Any type of
current deflector in the center of the stream bed caused immediate settling
of silt on the downstream side of the obstruction.
A thin layer of fine silt gradually settled into the bottom sand in the
channel during times of low stream flow. At times of substantially in-
creased flow, the silt is rolled up and resuspended from the sandy bottom
by the force of the current, forming clouds of red water.
In regions of reduced stream velocity along the stream banks, and
downstream from an inside meander, the silt settled and deposited on bot-
tom substrates. A reduction in stream velocity also occurred in the up-
stream end of Lake Weiss with the resultant buildup of silt on the bottom
of the flowage in the region of the old channel.
Results of core sampling of sediments deposited on the stream bed in-
dicated a red silt layer 7-inches thick in the upper Etowah River reaches

and about 10-inches thick in the upstream backwaters of Lake Weiss.
Barium, which occurred in the mineral ores but not in soil erosion sedi-
ments, was used to trace the deposition of mineral washing waste solids in
the Etowah and Coosa Rivers. Barium was found in Etowah and Coosa
River core sediments in concentrations ranging from 1.6 to 7.0 mg./g. dry
weight and in the mineral washing sludge ponds in a concentration of
10.8 mg./g. It was not found in sediments taken from tributary streams.
Potomac River
The physical effects of inert inorganic solids in the Potomac River in
1952 have been described by Ingram and Towne (1960). Glass sand
wastes were discharged to a stream that joined the Potomac River ap-
proximately one-half mile downstream. Upstream form this junction, the
sparklingy clear Potomac was bedded with rocks, rocky ledges, coarse
gravels, and some naturally occurring clean sand. Beds of Elodea sp. and
Potamogeson spp. were plentiful. Gill-breathing snails and mayflies pre-
dominated in the invertebrate population, and were found everywhere on
the bottom substrates. Large unionid, pearl-button clams were common
marginally. Small fish were observed in abundance. Thirteen genera of
bottom animals were represented in collections from this station (figure
At a station 600 yards downstream, and on the same side as the con-
fluence of the small creek receiving glass sand wastes with the Potomac
River, the stream bed was devoid of visible animal life. Blue-green algae
grew marginally on the wave-washed streambank areas. On the opposite
side of the stream. 1 3 genera of animals were found in bottom samples,
making the variation, displayed between the two sides of the stream, a
dramatic presentation. From the affected bank to mid-stream, rocky
ledges and bottom substrata of the original Potomac River were covered
by a blanket of wasted glass sand fines up to 2-feet deep. It was reported
that the effects of such deposits in 1958 were observed to suppress bot-
tom organism abundance as far as 10 miles downstream. The displayed
portion of the 1952 data (Figure 36) indicates the potential for stream
recovery within a shorter distance.
Bear River and Tributaries
A study was made on the Bear River and tributaries, Idaho and Utah,
in August and November 1962, to obtain information leading to the de-
velopment of a pollution abatement plan and to indicate levels of pollu-
tion during the irrigation and bean canning season in August and the
sugar beet processing and sauerkraut canning season in November.* A
* Survey of interstate Pollution of the Bear River and Tributaries, Idahodjtah,
1962. U.S. Department of Health . Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service,
Division of Water Supply and Pollution Control, R. A. Taft Sanitary Engineering
Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, April 1963.

portion of the Bear River drains the Cache Valley lowlands where water
is used to irrigate agriculture. The valley was interlaced with canals that
transported water from reservoirs and stream diversion points to agricul-
tural lands where is was applied. Ditches drained excess water from these
areas and discharged it to natural drainage courses (figure 37).
Average monthly flows of 400 to 500 c.f.s. were the rule in the Bear
River. During spring months, flows in excess of 1,000 c.f.s. may be ex-
pected, and in fall flows may fall short of the 400 c.f.s.
Ten stations were sampled in the Bear River from mile 99.5 to mile
51.8 (figure 38). In the two uppermost sampling stations, the stream bed
was a long series of riffles interspersed with deep clear pools that offered
excellent trout fishing. Here many different kinds of stream bed animals
were found that formed a population of 400 per square foot.
At station 89.5, just downstream from Five Mile Creek (figure 37).
sensitive caddisflv larvae and mayfly naiads were reduced and all of the
remaining mayflies belonged to the genus Tricorythodes, which can with-
stand large amounts of silt. From this point downstream to Cutler Reser-
voir, the stream bed was silt-laden.
* k *
Figure 36. Genera and population numbers of bottom animals per square
foot in Potomac River, September, 1952.

- - -—-- (_
I 0 2 3
- - ----. - -=- .-
Figure 37. Bear River and tributaries drainage system.
Downstream only qualitative samples of bottom organisms, taken
largely from rocks used in riprapping bridge approaches, could be ob-
tained in August because of the sandy stream bed devoid of organisms.
During the fall survey, artificial masonite substrates were used with a
3-week set. These were most successful in capturing a wide variety of
- - -

organisms with populations as high as 250 organisms per square foot in-
cluding many intolerant mayfly naiads and caddisflv larvae.
Downstream from the entrance of organic pollution from the Cub
River. there were no mayflies on the substrates in the fall and there was
an increase in tolerant bloodworms. Also there was a growth of Sphaero-
jilus that practically covered the artificial substrate within the 3-week
period of its set.
II ,/
flfl flri
A- .L5 ZS—A-
2 t
S 1i
£ £ AN
- - — j __j_ I I —
Figure 38. Benthos data, Bear River, 1962.
0 ¶‘C’C-
., U)
1 -4
— i000<3
I ,
gO I 3
•- .5 -A3S 0-095 0-’6 5 9-’ 9-68 -A3C 9-586 8-543 0-5 1 1
/ J
[ x: .C..3 TRUE
1 V Y

Stomach analyses of fish captured in this area showed that fish were
feeding on the same types of organisms that were captured on the artifi-
cial substrates. Some of the individual stomachs contained as many as 15
caddisfly larvae and mayfly nalads. It seemed probable that the source of
this fish food, and the source of the animals on the artificial substrates,
was the highly productive riffle areas 30 or more miles upstream. Drifting
mayflies have been reported as abundant as 170 X 10” Buetis sp. nymphs
per day in large rivers (Pearson and Franklin, 1968).
It has been reported t that in the years 1910 to 1950, “The Bear River
has deposited about 10 million tons of sandy sediment in its channel.”
This sand, 0.1 to 1 mm . in diameter, has been evenly deposited 5 to 6
feet deep over the natural gravel, clay, and silt bottom from Preston,
Idaho, to Cutler Reservoir. It has come from gullies, drained by Five Mile
Creek and Deep Creek, developed as a result of improper agricultural
practices and poor land management. The deposited sand is of an entirely
different character and origin than that of the original river channel; it not
only covers the original stream bed, but also covers all but a few rocks
along the river bank, thus further reducing available living spaces for or-
ganisms. Collected data on the Bear River indicate that stream bed ani-
mals were reduced from 400 per square foot in upstream natural areas to
those few that were found on rocks near bridge abutments in the approxi-
mately 40 stream miles affected by sand intrusion.
Figure 38 is made somewhat unattractive as a form of data display
chiefly because of the effort to show the location that each piece of data
represented on a complicated stream flow system. The same graphs could
have been used without drawing in the stream or using the connecting
dashed lines, but, there is some advantage for data interpretation when
stream locations can be viewed to gain mental perspective. The Bear Riv-
er system does not lend itself well to this type of presentation because of
its interlacing streams. Also, some may object to showing the number of
organisms per square foot as projections below the dividing (0) line be-
cause their first impression, incorrectly, is that this represents a negative
Although there may be too much data displayed on one page, Figure
38 does permit the examination of the effects of more than one type of
waste on stream biota. In addition to the silt pollution investigated in the
Bear River, lower Worm Creek was polluted by sugar beet processing
wastes. In August the stream was almost dry and the restricted flow was
insufficient to permit stream recovery from the preceding fall. During fall,
beet tops and pulp sludge exceeded 3 feet in depth in some stream reach-
es. Sludgeworms exceeded 20.000 per square foot. Only pollution tolerant
organisms were found.
* Einstein, A. 3. 1951. Preliminary Report on the Sedimentation in the Bear River
Channel between Cutler Darn and the Preston Bridge, Utah, to the Utah Power and
Light Company, Salt Lake City (Typed Copy).

The Cub River offered excellent trout habitat in its upper reaches. Its
rock and coarse gravel stream bed here provided a habitat for many
stonefly naiads, mayfly naiads, caddisify larvae, and aquatic beetle larvae,
as well as a hatchery for trout eggs and developing young trout. Just up-
stream from Station C—I 3.6 (figure 38), effluent from an industrial op-
eration that canned peas, green beans, and sauerkraut entered the stream,
and the Cub River became seriously degraded. For the following 14
downstream miles, the stream bed animal population was composed prin-
cip lly of a few kinds of pollution tolerant sludgeworms, bloodworms, and
leeches and occasionally large populations of these formed when water
quality would permit.

Chattooga River
STUDiES on the Chattooga River* with a mean daily discharge of 94
c.f.s. began upstream from Trion, Ga., across the Georgia-Alabama
State line and into Lake Weiss (Figure 32). Textile wastes and organic
wastes entered the stream at Trion, Ga. and organic wastes, principally.
entered at Summerville, Ga.
Water samples were collected daily for 14 days for dissolved oxygen
determinations. Downstream from Trion, Ga., industrial and domestic
wastes drastically reduced, and at times eliminated, the dissolved oxygen
resources of the river (figure 39). This display of data is dramatic be-
cause a particular level or concentration of a water quality constituent
could be chosen as an acceptable minimal criterion and the percentage of
time that the criterion was not met was accentuated.
Discharged industrial wastes to the Chattooga River contained dyes in
abundance. When river waters are polluted by dyes or similar wastes con-
taining a variety of unnatural hues and colors, visual observations can of-
ten be more informative and provide a more realistic picture of stream
appearance than routine comparison with laboratory color intensity stand-
ards. The color of the river downstream from Trion changed from day to
day according to the type, volume, and intensity of dye stuffs included in
the textile mill wastes. Changing from deep blue to black to brillant green,
it faded to less intense shades of gray and green downstream.
During August 1962, 20 different kinds of stream bed animals, pre-
dominantly insects sensitive towards pollution were found in the rocks
and coarse gravels upstream from Trion, Ga. Three miles downstream
from Trion, no stream bed animals were found (figure 40). Only a layer
of black sludge covered the stream bed. Industrial wastes were clearly
toxic; and, they were present in sufficient concentration to eliminate the
bottom animal community.
* Report on Coosa River System , Georgia-Alabama. Op. cit.

J —
* . “. - 9
[ 7 9
- %BELO*4
) _
Figure 39. Dissolved oxygen in the Chattooga River showing the percentage
D.O. below 4 mg/i, August 1962
Six miles downstream from Trion. stream bed conditions were only
slightly improved. The settled sludge was less than 1-inch thick. Tolerant
and very tolerant animals were predominant. A tolerant green alga, Sti-
geoclonium sp.. adhered to bottom deposits.
Two miles farther downstream the green alga was still evident; filamen-
tous blue-green algae and diatoms were able to tolerate the environment
here and were attached to rocks. Sludgeworms, the only benthic organism
encountered, survived the diluted toxic materials and responded to the
food in the organic pollution producing a population of 680 per square
After receiving toxic and organic wastes at Trion. Ga. the stream did
not support a stream bed animal population indicative of unpolluted wa-
ters for a distance of about 22 stream miles. In the affected stream reach.

C , ’,..
. . c/ I ..
i-TOTAL POPULATION (No /sq ft x 10)
C/ 7 ,S
Figure 40. Stream bed animal population in Chattooga River, Ga. August 1962

sensitive insect larvae were drastically reduced or eliminated, and pollu-
tion tolerant sludgeworms and associates responded to organic wastes
with dense populations where the concentration of toxic materials did not
preclude or hamper their existence or development.
Population trends are more easily visualized in figure 40 than in pre-
viously discussed three dimensional presentations because the amount of
data displayed in one area is less. By means of this device it is possible to
form a mental concept among displayed data grouped for a particular sta-
tion, as well as any single data component among several stations.
Field investigations such as has been described above depict severely
toxic conditions. Toxic wastes may eliminate fish populations in certain
areas or they may decimate only certain species or certain developmental
stages. Adult fish may migrate into an area and live where reproduction is
not successful. Some flshfood organisms are more sensitive to certain toxic
materials than are fish, and fish populations may be reduced because of a
lack of food rather than a direct killing of fish.
Toxic wastes may interfere with the natural purification process in wa-
ter by interfering with the life processes of those organisms that break
down the wastes. The character of the water and its mineral content can
alter considerably the toxic effects of a given chemical or waste. The com-
bination of two or more metals may make them several times more toxic
to aquatic life than when they occur separately in the environment.
The bioassay is a very important biological tool to use in conjunction
with field investigation when toxicities are suspected. The bioassay, con-
ducted under controlled experimental conditions, may be short term (96
hours or less) to determine acute toxicity or long term (days, weeks or
months) to determine effects of chronic exposure to test organisms of sus-
pected toxicants, and physiological changes produced within test orga-
nisms when exposed to sublethal concentrations of a material that is toxic
in higher concentrations. The bioassay may be conducted in a static water
environment such as an aquarium. jar. or tank, in a complex flow-
through laboratory test chamber, or in situ within the stream or lake.
Details for conducting bioassays are presented in the current edition of
“Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewaters.”
Mahoning River
In 1952. a steel strike curtailed industrial production along the Mahon-
ing River, Ohio, (Ingram and Bartsch, 1960). July collections were made
in that year while the load of remaining pollution came from untreated
municipal sewage (Figure 41). September collections were made at the
same stations after industrial production was resumed, and the pollutional
load consisted of both industrial and municipal wastes. Differences in the
number of genera of plants and animals under conditions existing in July
and September are shown in the right-hand part of figure 41. Stations 1

72 64 56 48 40 32 24 16 8 0
: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::; :; :
ii— 1
I Li
L 1IL1III1 1111111111
0 4 8 126 202428 323640444852
Figure 41. Effects of industrial wastes on genera of organisms in Mahoning River, 1952.

and 2 were control reaches; all other stations were subjected to varying
loads of pollution. The left-hand side shows the percentage reduction of
genera in September over July, 1952. it is obvious at a glance that the
biotic variety of the river was reduced concurrently with resumption of in-
dustrial activity and the resulting increased toxic pollutional loads reach-
ing the stream. That the indicated reduction is not attributable to seasonal
variation of aquatic life is attested to by the similarities in generic num-
bers collected at upstream Control Stations 1 and 2 in both July and Sep-
The Maboning River drains an area of 1,131 square miles; it begins
near Alliance, Ohio, flows northeasterly to Warren, Ohio, southeasterly
through Youngstown, Ohio, and joins the Shenango River near New Cas-
tle, Pa., to form the Beaver River. One of the most highly industrialized
areas in the United States is drained by the Mahoning where 10 percent
of this country’s steel production is concentrated in its basin.
Maximum river temperatures at Loweilville, Ohio, exceeded 93° F.
during 7 months in 1964 in May through November, and exceeded 100°
F. in June, July, and September; phenol concentrations were as high as
0.28 mg/I here in January 1965; cyanide values averaged 0.25 mg/I from
November, 1952, through September, 1953; ammonia (as NH: ) averaged
3.3 mg/i annually.* Reclaiming operations in the Mahoning River at
Youngstown were employed in a 4½-mile reach to separate and remove
iron deposits from river bottom sludge.
In a study during the week of January 4, 1965, bottom organisms were
reduced in numbers from over 1,300 per square foot upstream from New-
ton Falls, Ohio, to about 350 per square foot upstream and downstream
from Warren, 300 per square foot at Loweliville (Mile 11), and 850 per
square foot at the first bridge crossing downstream from the Ohio-Penn-
sylvania State line (figure 42). Similarly. 11 different kinds of organisms
were found upstream from Newton Falls, only one kind, a pollution-toler-
ant organism, was found at Loweliville (Mile 11), and 3 kinds were
found at the first bridge crossing downstream from the State line (figure
43). Although few in numbers downstream from Newton Falls, clean-wa-
ter associated organisms were found to the highway 422 bridge upstream
from Warren, Ohio. Clean-water-associated organisms were not found
throughout the remainder of the Mahoning River. Only pollution-tolerant
sludgeworms persisted at Loweilville, and only pollution-tolerant sludge-
worms and leeches and one kind of tolerant snail were found at the sta-
tion downstream from the State line. The absence of clean-water-
associated fish food organisms in the Mahoning River downstream from
Warren. Ohio. the severe decrease in the diversity of bottom organisms,
and the generally low numbers of stream bed animals at most sampling
* Report on Quality of Interstate Waters of Mahoning River, Ohio-Pennsylvania.
U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Region
V, Chicago, Ill., Jan. 1965.

stations, attests to the severely polluted condition of the river and its
toxicity from Warren, Ohio. to its confluence with the Shenango River in
The bottom of the Mahoning River throughout the reach studied was
generally rock and rubble with sludge along the shores and in many slack
water areas. Such a rubble substrate would be expected to support a
bountiful fish food organism population when not polluted. In many
areas, oil formed a film on the water’s surface, adhering to twigs, shore-
line grasses and debris, and became mixed with the sludges. Substrate
z (J Z
w — 0
l x - 4 Z
w z
U -
C l ,
U i
500 —
0 — - - . 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 —
70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0120 10 C
Figure 42. Numbers of stream bed animals, Mahoning-Beaver Rivers,
January 1965.


10 in z in 0 7 4 7
U i U i — 0
Ix .J 45 Z
I x
ct La. o —_i
! 1i t
2 0 < Z
— a ,
t ; r
1 1%
70 60 50 40 30 20 10 020 10 ol
Figure 43. Kinds of stream bed animals, Mahoning-Beaver Rivers, January 1965.

River. Sludgeworm populations were reduced from those found in the
more polluted reaches of the Mahoning River, which indicates a reduc-
tion in the organic food supply. At New Brighton, Pa., partial stream
recovery was found. The different kinds of organisms had increased and
stoneflies were observed in small numbers on rocks in the shallow water
near the shore. These were not found in quantitative samples taken from
deeper water where the impact of pollution would be expected to be
Oil was also found throughout the Beaver River. Many of the bottom
rock were red in color and showed evidence of an iron precipitate. Colo-
nizing the rock’s surface in shallower waters was a growth of slick, slimy
algae often characteristic of polluted water.
Fisheries investigators have reported that the Mahoning River does not
support a catchable fish population downstream from Warren, Ohio, to its
confluence with the Shenango River, and that the Beaver River supports a
catchable fish population only in its lower reach in the New Brighton
area. This was substantiated by an examination of the bottom organism
population. In those areas where fishing was not reported, there were no
bottom organisms on which fish normally feed.
Results of an examination of the phytoplankton population were simi-
lar to those found for the bottom organism population. Values of total
counts upstream from Newton Falls, Ohio, were in a range that would be
expected in an unpolluted stream during the winter months (figure 44).
Downstream from the U.S. Highway 5 bridge (mile 47.4) total count val-
ues were substantially reduced and remained so throughout the remainder
of the Mahoning River. At Loweliville, Ohio, and at the first bridge cross-
ing downstream from the Ohio-Pennsylvania State line, total count values
were one-fourth of those upstream from Newton Falls. Some recovery
was found at the highway 18 bridge upstream from the confluence of the
Mahoning River with the Shenango River. Depressed algal counts demon-
strate the degrading effects of pollution on this primary food source for
aquatic life in the stream. The low phytoplankton total count values and
the low population numbers found in the bottom organism population is
strongly suggestive of the action of a toxic substance or substances to
aquatic life.
Ten Mile River
Ten Mile River begins at the outlet of a pond in the northwest part of
Plainvillc. Mass. It follows an irregular course for 21 miles before it joins
the Seekonk River in East Providence, R.I. At one time it was stocked
with brook trout at Attleboro, Mass., some 8.3 miles downstream from its
mouth. During the 1964 survey, it received municipal, plating, pickling,
chemical, and textile wastes, and was considered too polluted to be

I . ,
30 RIVER 20 MILES 10
0J20.7 10.7 0.7
Figure 44. Phytoplankton in Mahoning-Beaver Rivers, January 1965

stocked with any fish downstream from its headwaters.* Thirty-five small
metal plating plants are situated in Plainvile, North Attleboro, and Attle-
boro, Mass.
Ten Mile River was severely degraded downstream from North Attle-
boro, Mass., to the point where it joins the Seekonk River in East Provid-
ence, R.I. In this 19 mile reach, Ten Mile River supported a minimal
population of clean-water-associated organisms only upstream from North
Extensive sludge deposits, slimes, stalked protozoa, and pollution-toler-
ant populations of sludgeworms and midges approaching 22,000 orga-
nisms per square foot of stream bottom were found in the reach between
the North Attleboro sewage treatment plant and Farmers Pond near At-
tleboro, Mass. (figure 45). Pollution-tolerant sludgeworms and midges
were less abundant downstream in Attleboro. Few different kinds of orga-
nisms and the presence of extensive sludge deposits impregnated with
grease indicated severe pollution and toxicity in this reach of Ten Mile
Only 4 kinds of bottom organisms were present in Ten Mile River up-
stream from the Attleboro sewage treatment plant and the confluence with
* Report on Pollution of
Op. cit.
Interstate Waters of the Blackstone and Ten Mile Riv-
Figure 45. Numbers of pollution-tolerant organisms, per square foot,
Ten Mile River, August 1964
20 RIVER MILE 5 0 5

an unnamed tributary. Pollution-tolerant midges and sludgeworms were
well represented, and stream bottom materials were covered with an oily
sludge and slimes. Downstream from this tributary the number of individ-
uals representing the four kinds of bottom organisms was much reduced.
Although four kinds of organisms were still present, the decrease in num-
bers of individuals suggests that wastes entering from the tributary were
toxic. No organisms were found in the oily sludge-covered bottom of this
purple-black tributary downstream from one of the dyeing and finishing
Effluents from the Attleboro sewage treatment plant contributed to ex-
tensive deposition of sludge and, because of unsuitable water quality, a re-
duction in both numbers and kinds of bottom organisms occurred (Figure
45). Even sludgeworms found conditions of existence restrictive. Slimes,
algae, and sludges covered much of the gravel and sandy stream bottom.
For the remainder of its length, Ten Mile River exhibited varying degrees
of degradation, usually severe.

A RECENT U.S. Department of the Interior report indicated that 4,800
miles of streams and 29,000 surface acres of impoundments and res-
ervoirs are affected seriously by surface coal mining operations alone
(Anon. 1967). Inventories of stream pollution magnitude and source
have highlighted the seriousness of the problem. There are about 66,500
sources of coal mine drainage pollution in Appalachia in active and inac-
tive mines. Pollutants in this mine drainage reduce about 10,500 miles of
streams below desirable levels of quality* (figure 46).
The pollution of streams by coal mine drainage can be extremely dam-
aging to aquatic life. Streams so polluted generally support only a few
species of particularly tolerant plants and animals.
Damages to aquatic life from acid mine drainage are attributed usually
to high concentrations of mineral acids, the ions of iron, sulfates, and the
deposition of a smothering blanket of precipitated iron salts on the stream
bed.** In addition, zinc, copper, and aluminum have occurred at lethal
concentrations to aquatic life in acid mine drainage; arsenic and cadmium
have been found at near lethal levels. The toxicities are increased by syn-
ergism among several of the elements including zinc with copper, zinc
with cadmium, and copper with cadmium. Toxicities of iron, copper, and
zinc solutions are much greater in acid waters polluted by coal mine
drainage than in neutral or alkaline waters. Because of the complex chem-
ical nature of coal mine drainage, it is impossible to assign its toxicity to-
wards aquatic life to any single chemical constituent.
Toxic chemicals in acid mine drainage eliminate sensitive aquatic life;
tolerant organisms flourish occasionally to great numbers apparently unaf-
fected by the pollutants. Fish are usually not found when the pH of the
* Stream Pollution by Coal Mine Drainage in Appalachia. U.S. Department of
the Interior, Federal Water Pollution Control Administration, 1967.
** Richard W. Warner, Biologist, Technical Advisory and Investigations Branch,
personal communication.

Figure 46. Acid mine discharges kill natural stream bed organisms. Note polluted stream
bed on viewers left compared to relatively unpolluted stream bed on viewers right.
I 4 IN


stream is lower than 4.5. Conversely, populations of midge larvae, Chi-
ronornus spp., may develop to nuisance proportions.
With a stream pH of 4.0 or lower, cattails, Typha spp., and some
mosses will flourish: other vascular plants are not found generally. Moore
and Clarkson (1967) studied the Monongahela River, W. Va., and con-
cluded that acid mine drainage does not affect the occurrence and distri-
bution of vascular aquatic plants. They found that nitrogen, calcium, total
acidity, iron. pH. and rate of flow had no significant effect on plant distri-
bution, but, that type of substratum was the most important factor
affecting plant growth and phosphate content and water level fluctuations
were significant.
With a stream pH of 4.0 or lower, dense mats of the green alga, Ulo-
thrix tenerrima Kuetzing. are usually common enough to attract the atten-
tion of casual observers. Gelatinous mats of chlorophyll-containing flagel-
lates, Euglena spp., often color stream beds dark green. Microscopic
Figure 47. Water quahity ana’yses of stream samples insice a 40-foot
mobile laboratory.

examination often reveals other species of green algae including Micro-
spora spp., Microthamnion sp., the flagellate Chiamydomonas spp., great
numbers of diatoms Eunotia spp., Pinnularia spp., and Navicula spp., and
lesser numbers of Surirella spp.
In severely polluted stream reaches, especially near the mine adits from
which polluted water flows, no stream bed animals will be found. In less
severely polluted reaches, common inhabitants include midges (C/’iirono-
mus spp.), alderflies (Sialis sp.), fishflies (Chauloides spp.), craneflies
(Antocha sp.), dytiseid beetles, and caddisflies (Pti lostomis sp.). Con-
spicuous by their absence ate crayfish, blackifies, mayflies, stoneflies, and
most species of caddisflies.
Upstream reaches, not polluted by acid mine drainage, may support
several species of rooted and floating vascular plants, 20 or 30 species of
algae, 15 or 20 or more species of stream bed animals, and a mixed com-
munity of fishes. Severely polluted stream reaches may support only three
or four species of algae. Less severely polluted reaches may support one
or two species of vascular plants. three or four species of algae, three or
four species of stream bed animals, and no fish.
Dr. Max Katz* summarized much literature on low pH effects and
concluded that: pH 6.5 to 7.0 delayed spawning in some fish species but
otherwise was harmless except when concentrations of heavy metals or
cyanides may be made toxic to fish; pH 6.0 to 6.5 interfered with spawn-
ing and hatching of eggs of some fish species; pH 5.0 to 6.0 may be lethal
to eggs and larvae of sensitive fish species and will favor dominance of
some blue-green algae; pH 4.5 to 5.0 will prohibit reproduction among
salmonids and is the threshold range for blackflies, mayffies, and stone-
ffies in numbers; pH 4.0 to 4.5 permits pike to survive but perch, bream,
and roach can only become temporarily acclimated. Observations on pH
ranges <4.0 were similar to those described earlier.
Acid pollution of a stream may have additional effects not generally
recognized. When water is too acid, it cannot be used for household pur-
poses. livestock watering, or industrial use, without expensive treatment.
Wildlife, unwilling to drink acid water, is usually absent near badly pol-
luted areas. Iron hydroxide deposits in stream channels and lack of desir-
able fish and wildlife in or near acid streams result in decreased land val-
ues (Parsons, 1952).
Lackey (1938) writes that one of the most noticeable features of
streams or pools receiving drainage from coal mines, either active or
abandoned, and their accompanying refuse piles, is the color, varying
from almost clear to a deep copper or dark brown. In some instances the
water may be clear but appear colored because the stream bed is lined
with an iron oxide deposit. Lackey found Euglena ,nutabÜis (figure 48)
so abundant that they were responsible for a green coating on sticks,
leaves, and stones. Such a coating comprised, “at a conservative estimate”
* Dr. Max Katz, University of Washington, personal communication.

Figure 48. Euglena mutabillis, showing two or three heavy chloroplastids, con-
spicuous stigma, small rod-like paramylum bodies, and apparent absence of
flagellum. After Lackey (1939).
over I million organisms per rn. 2 of surface. This one organism, Lackey
found, was the most characteristic of highly acid streams. It was present
in even the thinnest trickles over vertical faces of rocks in some instances,
extending well back into mine openings where there was but little light.
The organism is apparently devoid of a flagellum, and its migrations to
favored situations must be accomplished by crawling. Lackey found that
if a bottle of water containing a large number of the organisms and a half
inch of mud were shaken vigorously, the mud settled within 2 or 3 min-
utes, and in a half hour or less there was a green covering of Euglena on
its surface. Lackey (1939) listed the number of species of plant and ani-
mal groups that occurred below pH 4.0 (table 5).
More than a decade ago, Turner (1958) calculated the monetary dam-
ages to 16.3 miles of Goose Creek, a tributary of the South Fork of the
Kentucky River, from acid pollution from an operating coal mine to be
$13,325. The monetary value was arrived through electro-shocking two
similar areas, one upstream from and one downstream from the pollution,
and through creel-census.
Table 5. Distribution of Recognized Species of Plants and Animals
Occurring at or Below pH 3.9. (After Lackey, 1939)
Plants of Species Animals of Species

Monongabela Kiter 3ystem
During August and September 1963. a study was made of the Monon-
gahela River System* Mine drainage, containing sulfuric acid and acid
* Report on Pollution of the Interstate Waters of the Monongahela River System,
A. D. Sidio and K. M. Mackenthun, U.S. Department of Health, Education, and
Welfare, Public Health Service, Robert A. Taft Sanitary Engineering Center, Cin-
cinnati, Ohio, December 1963.
Figure 49. Streams within the Monongahela River Basin.
0 10 20

salts, was the most damaging waste entering the streams within this basin.
Annual damages. because of acid conditions in the Monongahela River,
were estimated at S2250,000.
The Monongahela River is formed by the confluence of the West Fork
and Tygart rivers at Fairmont. \V. Va. (figure 49). The drainage basin
includes the southwest corner of Pennsylvania, the northeast portion of
West Virginia, and a small section of western Maryland. The basin drains
an area of 7.380 square miles. The river flows in a northerly direction and
joins the Allegheny River at Pittsburgh, Pa., to form the Ohio River. The
main stem of the Monongahela River flows through the Appalachian Pla-
teau region and is characterized by rugged topography, with narrow
stream valleys several hundred feet below the level of the uplands.
Downstream from Jane Lew, \V. Va.. on the West Fork, many different
kinds of bottom organisms were collected indicating a healthy stream that
is suitable to support fish and other animal life (Figure 50). Aquatic
mayflv and caddisfly forms were abundant here. Downstream from this
station on both the West Fork and Monongahela Rivers, the stream was
degraded by acid mine pollution. The combined effects of acidity and the
deposition of sediments caused by mine drainage resulted in a drastic de-
crease in both kinds and numbers of stream bed animals. At Jane Lew
there were 12 different kinds of stream bed animals in collected samples;
at all downstream stations there were four or less. At downstream sta-
CircIa a Animals per s uore foot
Bars • Kinds of animals
7Z O
Figure 50. Stream bed organisms, Monongahela River system, 1963.

Figure 51. Relative ratios of circle diameters to circle areas. From left and center, 1 : , 2.5 : 2.5, 5.

tions, the numbers of organisms per square foot were also reduced below
the numbers at the control station, except downstream from Fairmont, W.
Va., where sludgeworms and midges, the only bottom animals present,
were found in high numbers because of discharge of sewage and other or-
ganic wastes. The pH in the Fairmont area and at all downstream stations
ranged from 3.6 to 4.9 during the study. At several stations, coal washing
operations made the water black and blanketed the stream bed with coal
fines, eliminating living areas for animals. Bottom sediments had an odor
of coal and oil.
Figure 50. as a mechanism for data display, leaves room for improve-
ment. Two methods of depicting data are shown on one figure and this
tends to create confusion in interpretation. The circles are too close to-
gether and the effort would have been enhanced if bars had been used to
show both kinds and numbers of organisms.
The numbers of animals per square foot are shown as the diameter of
the circle. Often the scale may be omitted on similar figures because the
intent is to show relative differences among stations. Some reporters use
the diameter of the circle to depict their data while others may use the
circle’s area. An interesting relationship between circle area and diameter
is shown in figure 51. The writer should make his display clear and non-
The Cheat River is formed by Shavers Fork and Black Water River
upstream from Parsons. \V. Va. In Shavers Fork, 13 kinds of stream bed
animals including those found only in clean healthy streams were col-
• ‘ I , i N miles
0 2 4 6 8 10 2 14
KINDS 0 0 20
Figure 52. Stream bed animal data, Cheat River, 1963.

lecteci (flgure ‘2). In tsiack water Kiver, stream Deci rocKs were coateci
with a reddish deposit characteristic of acid mine drainage and a tolerant
alga; they supported no animals.
Downstream from Parsons \V. Va., no stream bed animals were found;
those organisms that may have been introduced from Shavers Fork were
killed. Some stream recovery was found at Rowlesburg, W. Va., where
sampling was limited to a qualitative search because of the sheet rock
stream bed. Downstream at Aibright, the stream bed habitat was again se-
verely degraded and only an occasional very tolerant organism could be
Plankton data confirm the conclusions drawn from a study of stream
bed animals. Where conditions of existence were more stringent, and
where stream bed animals were reduced in kinds and numbers, planktonic
algae were likewise reduced severely in kinds and usually in numbers
(figure 53).
Figure 53. Planktonic algal data, Monongahela River system, 1963.
0 $0 *0

KRUMHOLZ (1960) reports that radioactive materials may be accu-
mulated by aquatic organisms in three different ways: (1) By inges-
tion along with water or food materials; (2) by absorption from the sur-
rounding medium through the body surfaces; and/or (3) by adsorption to
the body surfaces. The first two methods are largely biological in nature
and the radionuclides enter into the metabolic processes of the organism.
The third method is primarily physical in nature and the radio-materials
adhere to outer body surfaces. In the latter instance, the size of the orga-
nism, because of the tremendous differences in surface-volume ratios of
the different ones, is of great importance. In addition, the diversity of
structure and surface confi2uration increase the surface area. Foster and
Davis (1955) pointed out that the high radioactivities in plankton and
sponges in the Columbia River were associated, in part, with their exten-
sive surface areas.
Radioactive and stable isotopes of the same element have the same
chemical behavior, and living organisms are not capable of distinguishing
between the two. It is well known that all organisms do not concentrate
all chemical elements, but that they select certain elements for their meta-
bolic processes and discard others. Because of this selective power, it is to
be expected that they will accumulate any radioactive isotopes of those
elements that may be present along with the stable ones.
In an aquarium experiment, Whittaker (1953) showed how biological
processes effectively removed phosphorus from the water with algae con-
centrating the tracer material to levels 300,000 times those in the water.
During the first few hours after introduction, the phosphorus was ab-
sorbed rapidly by the phytoplankton, but after 15 hours the amounts of
radioactivity in the phytoplankton decreased, and more and more of the
radiophosphorus was accumulated by the algae on the sides and bottom
of the aquaria. Maximum accumulations of radiophosphorus by the algae
were reached in 18 days.

Davis, et al (1952, 1953) found concentration factors for radiophos-
phorus by phytoplankton in the Columbia River to be 100,000 to
200,000 times that of the surrounding water, and Krumholz (1954) re-
ported that the attached freshwater alga (Spirogyra) concentrated radio-
phosphorus by a factor of 850,000 times that of the water in White Oak
From the culture of Escherichia coli cells in a phosphorus-poor me-
dium containing 25 millicuries (mc) of phosphorus-32, and subsequent
release into a small unpolluted stream, the release of the radioactive phos-
phorus (p- 3 2) downstream was investigated (Hooper and Ball, 1966). In
moving downstream, approximately 90 percent of the radioactivity re-
mained inside the bacterial cells while 10 percent diffused from the cells
and appeared in the water in filterable form. There was a gradual loss of
radioactivity from the water because of fallout of labelled cells and uptake
by filter-feeding invertebrates. A small amount of the phosphorus-32 re-
leased in soluble form by the bacteria was taken up by the periphyton and
by aquatic macrophytes. Failure to find important concentrations of ra-
dioactivity in any pan of the food chain or in the environment suggested
that F. coli cells effectively dispersed radioactive phosphorus and mini-
mized the transfer activity through segments of the food web leading to
There is a general decrease in the level of radioactivity with the de-
crease in food chain level. Phytoplankton, which absorb nutrients directly
from the water, concentrate the largest amounts. Next in order are the
herbivorous insect larvae; and then juvenile fish, which feed on bottom
organisms. Bass and other game fish, at the end of the food chain, are
least radioactive. In a study of sma llmouth bass in the Hanford, Washing-
ton, vicinity in the Columbia River, fish caught in September had the
highest concentration of gross beta activity and fish caught in April the
least (Foster and Henderson, 1957). The range in gross beta activity in
units of 106 microcuries per gram of tissue in September fish was 63 to
250 in skin and muscle, 310 to 3,520 in scales and bone, 98 to 840 in in-
ternal organs and 700 to 8,240 in stomach contents. Davis (1962) found
the insects in the Columbia River within the Hanford Reservation to be
many more times radioactive than the waters they inhabit. The most
abundant nuclides found in insects were phosphorus-32, copper-64,
chromiun-5 I, zinc-65, and sodium-24.
Echo and Hawkins (1966). in studying radionuclides in settling ponds,
found that algae not only concentrated the radionuclides in their struc-
ture, but that the release of the nuclides might be retarded for considera-
ble lengths of time, especially in waters of low pH. This might form a
zone of high activity of undesirable magnitude at the mud-water interface.
Animas River
The Animas River rises in rugged mountains in the vicinity of Silverton

in southwestern Colorado. It flows southerly for 50 miles to Durango,
Colorado, and joins the San Juan River about 60 miles south and west of
Durango, at Farmington, New Mexico. A uranium mill was located at
Durango, approximately mid-way along the river. Upstream from Du-
rango the river is narrow, flowing through mountainous terrain. Where
the river flows through Durango it is from 100 to 200 feet wide and has
an average depth, during low flow, of about 5 feet. Downstream the river
meanders through farmland, then passes through a section of rocky out-
crop where its width is restricted to about 150 feet, then again passes
through more genfle terrain. Downstream the climate becomes progres-
sively more arid.
The Animas is the domestic water supply for Aztec and Farmington,
New Mexico, which had a combined population of 28,000. Downstream
from Durango, the Animas provides water to irrigate 26,000 acres of
croplands, as well as a recreational area including swimming and fishing.
The uranium refinery at Durango began continuous operation in 1948.
flows in the Animas River at Durango were 250 cfs in 1955 during sam-
pling. Data indicated an approximate discharge of 2.0 milligrams per day
of dissolved radium from the Durango refinery. Samples of mud, algae
and bottom insects were analyzed in 1955 anu again during the 1958 sur-
vey (table 6).*
Table 6. Radium 226 in Animas River Samples**
pg/g 2
pg/g 2
1 ml.
upstream from Durango
2 ml.
downstream from Durango....
Un !.
2 mi.
downstream from Durango. ..
1 dry weight
2 ashed weight
sSu ey of Interstate Pollution of the Animas River, Colorado-New Mexico. U.S.
Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Robert A.
Taft Sanitary Engineering Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, May, 1959.
‘ t A picogram (pg) is 10—12 gram. In the case of radium, 1 gram very nearly equals 1
curie, where the curie is defined as 3.70 X 1010 disintegrations per second. Thus 1
picogram very nearly equals 1 picocurie or 1 micromicrocurie of radium.
A copper wire screen with 14 wires per inch, one square yard in area,
supported at 2 opposite sides by wood strips 1” x 2” x 4 ft. was used to
sample bottom fauna in the rocky swiftly flowing stream in 1958. A 1-yd 2
area immediately upstream from the screen was sampled by wiping the
organisms from the rocks and stirring up the bottom. Detached organisms
were carried in the current and deposited on the screen. The screen was
then lifted from the water and organisms removed with forceps and
placed in marked vials.

Mill effluent flowed along one side of the river for some distance before
becoming completely mixed with the receiving waters. No stream bed or-
ganisms were found on the waste receiving side and organisms were af-
fected adversely in the center of the stream. A population of stream bed
animals unaffected by pollution was found on the opposite side.
The scarcity of botton organisms extended for 28 miles downstream
from the mill where only 14 insect larvae per square yard were collected
in a 7 square yard sample. Forty-three miles downstream from the mill
the numbers, kinds and weight of stream bed organisms were nearly equal
to the collections upstream from the mill.
Bioassay tests were made to determine the toxicity of the wastes to
rainbow trout, the most important game fish in the stream. Several acid
waste streams had different toxicities; the most toxic wastes killed 50 per-
cent of the test fish in 96 hours in dilutions containing only 0.09 to 0.21
percent of waste with receiving river water.
A report subsequent to the aforementioned one was dated January,
1960; it described stream studies conducted during the summer of 1959
that were designed to evaluate effects of remedial treatment facilities,
principally waste lagooning, installed by the uranium mill during 1959.
The mill’s discharge of radium between 1958 and 1959 was reduced by
80 percent to 0.059 mg/day. In algae, river mud, and fish there was a def-
inite reduction in dissolved radioactivity in 1959 compared to the earlier
year. Just downstream from the pollutional source, river muds contained
only 11 percent of the alpha radioactivity in 1959 for an 89 percent im-
provement over 1958. June high river flows were thought to be responsi-
ble for much of the decrease. Algae contained 30 percent of the gross al-
pha radioactivity value.
The bottom organism population was improved in 1959 in terms of
variety of species, but was little improved, compared to 1958, in terms of
abundance or weight per square yard of stream bed.
Sigler et al. (1966) have reported on their studies of the Animas River
from June, 1960, to July, 1963. The uranium mill at Durango ceased op-
erations in 1963. During 22 sampling trips, water samples contained con-
centrations of dissolved radium ranging from 0.3 to 2.2 pg/I with back-
ground values averaging 0.06 pg/I. In sediments, background radium
concentrations were 1 .1 pg/g dry weight and samples downstream from
Durango ranged up to 27 pg/g in concentration. After May, 1961, sedi-
ment values higher than 5.6 pg/g were not found; this reduction was at-
tributed to movement of radium downstream during high spring runoff by
leaching, and the transport of radium-bearing biotic components and sedi-
Sigler et al. concluded that the concentration of radium in the water,
sediment. algae. and fish of the Animas River decreased from 1958 to
1963. During 1960 to 1963, collections of aquatic organisms indicated
that numbers and diversity of the biota downstream from Durango were

similar to those found upstream. Occurrence or abundance of particular
organisms varied among stations, but the reasons for such changes were
not apparent.
An opportunity arose in 1966 to restudy this portion of the Animas
River.* Then, the population of stream bed animals increased from 277
organisms per square yard upstream from Durango to 3,034 organisms
per square yard, mostly clean water associated caddisfly larvae, a short
distance downstream. Farther downstream, the population was again 230
organisms per square yard. The same sampling device and procedures
were used in this survey as in the 1958 and 1959 surveys to make the
data reasonably comparable. The sharp population increase downstream
from Durango was a response to the organic enrichment in municipal
waste discharges from Durango, and the removal of toxic uranium mill
wastes. The organic enrichment was insufficient in volume and concentra-
lion to eliminate clean water associated organisms, instead, it stimulated
the production of some of them.
t A report on biological studies of selected reaches and tributaries of the Colorado
River. U.S. Department of the interior, Technical Advisory and investigations
Branch, Cincinnati, Ohio, prepared in cooperation with the Colorado River Basin
Water Quality Control Project, Denver, Cob., 1968.

J T IS well documented that many lakes throughout the country, and the
world, have been fertile reservoirs for algal development for many
years and have been called eutrophic. Notable for their algal growths in
the United States are Lake Zoar in Connecticut, Lake Sebasticook in
Maine, the Madison Lakes in Wisconsin, Lake Erie, the Detroit Lakes in
Minnesota, Green Lake and Lake Washington in Washington, and Kia-
math Lake in Oregon.
As nutrient concentrations increase the numbers of algal cells increase
Nuisance conditions occur such as surface scums and algal-littered
beaches. The water may become foul smelling. Filter-clogging problems
may occur at municipal water treatment installations. Filamentous algae,
especially Cladophora, grow profusely on any suitable subsurface; these
can cause nuisances when they break loose and wash ashore to form win-
drows of stinking vegetation. The abnormal acceleration of a process that
is considered as normal often is not in the best interests of man.
To properly assess a nutrient problem, consideration should be given to
all of those sources that may contribute nutrients to the watercourse.
These sources could include sewage, sewage effluents, industrial wastes,
land drainage, applied fertilizers, precipitation, urban runoff, soils, and
nutrients released from bottom sediments and from decomposing plank-
ton. Transient waterfowl, falling tree leaves, and ground water may con-
tribute important additions to the nutrient budget. Flow measurements are
paramount in a study to quantitatively assess the respective amounts con-
tributed by these various sources during different seasons and at different
flow characteristics. In the receiving lake or stream the quantity of nu-
trient contained by the standing crops of algae, aquatic vascular plants,
fish, and other aquatic organisms are important considerations. A knowl-
edge of those nutrients that are harvested annually through the fish catch,
or that may be removed from the system through the emergence of in-
sects, will contribute to an understanding of the nutrient budget.

The interaction of specific chemical components in water, prescribed
fertilizer application rates to land and to water, minimal nutrient values
required for algal blooms, vitamins required, other limiting factors, and
the intercellular nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations are likewise im-
portant. Usually, it is necessary to determine that portion of the nutritive
input attributable to man-made or man-induced pollution that may be
corrected as opposed to that input that is natural in origin, and therefore,
usually not correctable. A nutrient budget is used to determine the annual
input to a system, the annual outflow, and that which is retained within
the water mass to recycle with the biomass or become combined with the
solidified bottom sediments. Examples of nitrogen and phosphorus inputs
were presented in tables 2 and 3.
Reservoirs or lakes are the settling basins of drainage areas. The poten-
tial productivity of a body of water is determined to a great extent by the
natural fertility of the land over which the runoff drains and by the contri-
butions of civilization. Biological activity within the lake influences such
chemical characteristics as dissolved oxygen. pH, carbon dioxide, hard-
ness, alkalinity, iron, manganese, phosphorus, and nitrogen; it is varied
through temperature fluctuations and stimulated by nutrient variations
(e.g., phosphorus and nitrogen). A lake’s basin gives dimension to bio-
logical activity and may, because of unique physical characteristics, con-
centrate the nutrients it receives as well as the developing biomass.
The examination of waterway sediments and other solids fits well in a
discussion devoted to eutrophication. Sediments are best collected with a
device that permits a core of the material to be extracted from which seg-
ments may be selected for examination. These identifiable segments may
be examined for pollen, diatom skeletons or chitinized remains of cladoc-
erans or midges, as well as selected chemical constituents. Generally car-
bon and nitrogen, and often phosphorus, are determined. The carbon, ni-
trogen, phosphorus, and their respective ratios are important values to aid
in the identification of a material, to calculate the amount of major
nutrients contained within a segment of the biomass or a stratum of se t h-
ment, and from which to judge the relative input of nutrients to the water
mass when the ecosystem component undergoes decomposition, or natural
chemical change (table 7).
Gerloff has been a proponent of a tissue analysis technique to evaluate
nitrogen and phosphorus supplies in waters for growth of algae and an-
giosperm aquatic plants and to determine availability of the elements in
lakes from which plants were collected (Gerloff and Krombholz, 1966).
They found the critical levels (minimum tissue content associated with
maximum growth) to be approximately 1.3 percent nitrogen and 0.13
percent phosphorus for several species of vascular plants. In all but 1 of 9
lakes studied, phosphorus was found more likely to be limiting to higher
aquatic plant growth than was nitrogen. In Lake Mendota, Wisconsin, a
highly fertile lake, plant samples were collected in June, July, August, and

Table 7.
Carbon, Nitrogen,
Phosphorus In
Standing Crop, lbs/ac
1,000 to
100 to 360
Attached Algae
Vascular Plants
2,000 200
14,000 1,800
200 to 400 40 to 80
Myriophyflu m
Bottom Organisms
Birge and Juday,
10 Gerloff and Skoog,
10 Mackenthun et al.,
17 Birge and Juday,
Neil, 1958.
2 Birge and Juday,
Rickett, 1922, 1924.
10 Harper and Daniel,
6 Birge and Juday,
8 Schuette and Aider,
1928, 1929.
10 Schuette and Alder,
1928, 1929.
10 Schuette and Alder,
1928, 1929.
6 Schuette and Aider,
1928, 1929.
6 Anderson et aL,1965.
Dineen, 1953; Moyle,
8 Borutsky, 1939.
6 Birge and Juday,
14 Birge and Juday,
14 Birge and Juday,

Fish 150 tO 600 Swlngla, 1950.
‘2.5 ‘0.2 10 Beard. 1926.
2.8 0.18 to 0.49 Borgstrom, 1961.
0.19 Love et at., 1959.
0.20 McGauhey et al.,
0.29 Sylvester and
Anderson, 1964.
2.6to3.3 Oi8toO.24 lngallsetal.,1950.
Domestic Wastes 3 5.1 to
10.6 Engelbrecht and
Morgan, 1959.
445 6 McGauhey et at.,
2Oto 5.3to
44Q 10.6 4 Bush and Mulford,
61.3 10.7 6 Oswald, 1960.
l8to 3 .5to
28 9,0 Anon, 1967.
Lakelahoe 0.6to 0.6to 4to
19.8 1.6 25 McGauhey et at.,
Wisconsin Lakes 4.4 to 0.6 to 0.12 to 8 to 5 to Black, 1929; Juday
40.5 3.6 0.6 14 6 etal.,1941.
Madison,Wis. 0.7to 0.lto 6to
Lakes o ,g 0.12 9 Sawyer et at., 1945.
Green Lake 0.6 0.17 4 Sylvester rid
Anderson, 1964.
Sebasticook 10 to 0,3 to .06 to B to 5 to Mackenthuri et at.,
34 1.8 .16 44 16 1968.
Kiamath Lake 8.6 1.2 7 Thomas, N. A.,
Unpublished. 6
Boston Harbor 2.3 to .06 to
5.0 .41 Stewart, R. K., 1968.
Organic River
Sediments 0.03 0.0027 12 Finger and Wastler,
I As the total element in percentage of the dry weight, unless specified otherwise

Standing Crop,
Constituent —
lbs/ac Ratio
%C’ %N’ Reference
Dry C:N N:P
Pulp & Paper 22 Finger and Wastler,
Wastes in 5.3 0.23 1969.
Untreated Finger and Wastler,
Domestic 354 0.3 12 1969.
Chemical and
fertilizers and
domestic 3.15 0.12 1969.
26 Finger and Wastler,
No tributary 0.55 0.05 1969.
11 Finger and Wastler,
Sand; silt; clay; 0.4 to .02 to 20 Ballinger and
loam 2.1 .10 McKee, Unpub-
Ii shed 6
Stable sludge;
20 to
peat; organic 2.0 to .10 to 25 Ballinger and
debris 5.0 .20 McKee, Unpub-
lished. 6
Paper mill 6 to .10 to 60 McKee, Unpub-
SOto Ballingerand
wastes 15 .30 lished. 6
Packinghouse 2. Bto .3 Oto 8to Ballingerand
Wastes 4.3 .50 lished.°
10 McKee, Unpub-

Fresh sludge;
algae; sewage
solids Sto .7 Oto 7to Ballingerand
40 5.0 8 McKee, Unpub-
lished. 6
Log Pond Bark 50.6 .5 .02 100 25 Thomas, N. A.
Unpublished. 6
Sewage sludge
in river 5.8 0.28 .18 21 2 Thomas, N. A.
Algae; sawdust;
sewage 14.6 0.93 .11 16 9 Thomas, N. A.
Unpublished. 6
Leaf litter 28.3 1.63 0.11 17 15 Warner, R. W. et al.,
Sand 0.2 .02 .005 10 4 Warner, R. W. et al.,
Loam 2.7 .19 .02 14 10 Warner, R. W. etal.,
Muck 7.3 .52 .04 14 13 Warner, R. W. et al.,
Floating Waste
Wool 37to 3.4to .O8to 9to 38to 8
43 4.7 .09 11 58
1 As the total element in percentage of the dry weight, unless specified otherwise.
2 Calculated on wet weight.
‘ Average sewage flow can be calculated at 100 gallons per capita per day.
Biological Aspects of Water Quality, Charles River and Boston Harbor, Massachusetts by R. K. Stewart. Technical Advisory and Inves.
tigations Branch, Cincinnati, Ohio (1968).
Technical Advisory and Investigations Branch, Cincinnati, Ohio.
Analyses of soil types from “Black-Water Impoundment Investigations,” by R. W. Warner, R. K. Ba llentine and L. E. Keup, Techni.
cal Advisory and Investigations Branch, U.S. Department of the Interior, Cincinnati, Ohio (1969).
8 Fertilization and Algae in Lake Sebasticook, Maine. Department of Health ,Education, and Welfare, Technical Advisory and Investiga.
tions Activities, Cincinnati, Ohio (1966).

September. The percentage of nitrogen in plant tissues of Ceratophyllurn
demersurn varied from 2.11 to 4.43 among these monthly samples while
percentage phosphorus varied between 0.51 and 0.75. Among 6 plant
species, the percentage of nitrogen varied from 1.98 to 4.43 and phospho-
rus from 0.23 to 0.75. In Lake Nebish, Wis., a relatively infertile lake,
the variance among 4 plant species among the same months was 1.48 to
3.19 percent nitrogen and 0.10 to 0.33 percent phosphorus.
The carbon-nitrogen and nitrogen-phosphorus ratios are of greater
value in data interpretation than are total to soluble phosphorus ratios.
Total to soluble phosphorus ratios may vary from 2 to 17 or even 90
percent dependent upon the particular water, season, aquatic plant popu-
lations, and probably other factors (Table 8). These ratios are of value
when they can be determined periodically within the same water body and
changes in them correlated with volumetric response changes within the
algal mass.
Table 8. Total to Soluble Phosphorus Ratios in Water
Total P:Sol.P
Western Lake Erie .....
Chandler and Weeks, 1945.
Detroit River mouth
5 to 7
PHS Detroit Project.
Linsley Pond, Conn
Hutchinson, 1957.
Northern Wisconsin Lakes
Juday and Birge, 1931.
Northeast Wisconsin Lakes
2 to 10
Juday et al., 1927.
Ontario Lakes (8)
Rigler, 1964.
Southeast Wisconsin Lakes (17)...
Mackenthun, unpublished.
Rock River, Wis.
2 to 15
Mackenthun, unpublished.
Sebasticook Lake, Maine
2.8 winter
Mackenthun etal. 1968.
12.7 spring
4.1 fall
The nutrient loading to the lake on a unit basis gives some measure of
comparability among various water bodies (table 9). Likewise, a lake or
reservoir usually retains a portion of those nutrients that it receives from
its various sources. The amount or percentage of the nutrients that may
be retained by a lake or reservoir is variable and will depend upon:
1. the nutrient loading to the lake or reservoir;
2. the volume of the euphotic zone;
3. the extent of biological activity;
4. the detention time within the basin or time allotted for biological
activity; and
5. the level of the penstock or discharge from the basin.
Lake Sebasticook, Maine
Lake Sebasticook at Newport, Maine, t was plagued with nuisance algal
growths caused principally by nutrients contained in domestic and in-
* Fertilization and Algae in Lake Sebasticook, Maine. Technical Advisory and In-
vestigations Activities, Robert A. Taft Sanitary Engineering Center, Cincinnati,
Ohio, 1966.

Table 9. Lake Nutrient Loadings and Retentions
Nitrogen (N)
horus (P)
Loading Retention
lb./yr./acre (Percent)
‘81 48 to 70
1435 50 to 64
64 to 88
—26 to 25
Anderson, 1961.
Anon., 1949.
Lackey and Sawyer, 1945.
‘162 44 to 61
2 89
90 80

‘440 44
—21 to 12
30 to 70
Ludwig et al., 1964.
Mackenthun, unpubi.
Sylvester and Anderson,
F.W.P.C.A. Data.
Ross R. Barnett
‘Inorganic nitrogen only.
2 Soluble phosphorus only.
U )

dustrial plant wastes that were discharged to the East Branch of the Se-
basticook River at Dexter and Corinna, Maine. Along with other nu-
trients, the Lake received annually about 8,000 pounds of total
phosphorus, 75 percent of which was contributed by domestic and in-
dustrial wastes. These nutrients produced as much as 9.7 million pounds
of algae as a standing crop within the lake during those days of the year
that were optimal for algal development. Algae were swept by winds and
waves into bays and coves where they decomposed in the hot sun forming
a “green-paint” covering on rocks, boats, and piers, releasing a pungent
pig-pen odor in decay.
The field study, made in 1965, encompassed the East Branch of the Se-
basticook River from Lake Wassokeag to the inlet of Lake Sebasticook
(a distance of 10.5 stream miles); Alder Stream, tributary to the East
Branch; Stetson and Mulligan streams, tributary to Lake Sebasticook (fig.
54); Lake Sebasticook (fig. 55); and the lake’s outlet. The purpose of the
study was: (1) to identify major sources of nutrients to Sebasticook
Lake; (2) to assess their significance; and (3) to recommend the most
feasible nutrient control measures that will effect a lasting reduction in the
aquatic growths. Field studies were conducted during the winter ice-cover
in early February, just following the spring lake turn-over from May 11
through 18, the summer maxima of aquatic vegetation growth from July
26 to August 2, and the fall lake turn-over during the last week of Octo-
ber and the first week of November.
Samples for analyses for nitrogen (organic-N, Nl-J,-N, NO -N) and for
total and dissolved phosphorus were fixed with I ml 112504 per liter and
shipped to Cincinnati, Ohio, in polyethelene containers. Samples for dis-
solved phosphorus analysis were filtered shortly after collection and
shipped separately. Analytical procedures were according to Standard
Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater (Twelfth Ed.).
Field collections of water for plankton analyses were preserved with 4
percent formalin and shipped to the Cincinnati laboratory. Phytoplankton
counts were made using the Sedgwick-Rafter counting cell following
Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater. Mi-
croscopic measurements were made of a selected number of predominant
organisms and the wet algal volume was determined by the following for-
Algal volume (p.p.m.) = Number of organisms per millileter >(
average species volume in cubic microns X l0 .
Chlorophyll bearing cells were filtered from the water with membrane
filters (0.45 micron pore). Filters and cells were placed in vials of ace-
tone for extraction of the pigments and for solution of the filters (Creitz
and Richards, 1955). Samples were then centrifuged to remove particu-
late suspended materials. The clear supernatant pigment-bearing acetone
was examined on a recording spectrophotometer. Spectrums were eval-

Figure 54. Sampling station locations on tributary streams, Lake
Sebasticook, Maine.
uated and the quantity of cholorophyll determined as outhned by Rich-
ards with Thompson (1952).
An aliquot solids sample based on a packed volume of a selected core
segment was oven-dried, suspended in equal parts of water and concen-
trated nitric acid, gently boiled for 45 minutes, and allowed to cool. Po-
tassium dichromate crystals (0.1 gram) were added, the mixture cooled,
washed into a centrifuge tube, and water added. The sample was washed
3 times by alternately centrifuging, decanting, and adding water. The in-
organic residue was then diluted to a specific volume of water (200 ml
per gram of original sample), 2 drops of liquid household detergent were
added, the sample stirred, and 2 drops of sample were withdrawn by a
large bore pipette and placed on a cover slip. The sample on the cover
P 2 3 4

slip was evaporated to dryness on a hot plate. Following dryness the hot
plate temperature was increased to 3500 F., a clean microscopic slide was
placed thereon, and a large drop of Hyrax mounting media was placed on
the slide. After 10 minutes, and slight cooling, the cover slip with dried
sample was inverted onto the Hyrax drop and pressed firmly into place.
The slide was then examined for diatom skeletons.
The Sebasticook Lake drainage basin has an area of 126 square miles.
The lake is fed by runoff from three main tributary streams: Mulligan
Stream having a drainage area of 20.9 square miles. the East Branch of
the Sebasticook River. with a drainage area of 56.2 square miles, and
Stetson Stream, with a drainage area of 28.6 square miles. About 8,600
people resided in the area.
Mulligan and Stetson streams drained rural areas which were sparsely
populated. There were no known significant nutrient waste discharges to
these streams. The East Branch of the Sebasticook River received dis-
charges of municipal and industrial wastes from the urban portions of the
Towns of Dexter and Corinna. The river received wastes from 2 woolen
mills in Dexter that produced woolen yard goods from raw stock, which
had been scoured prior to receipt. Wastes consisted of batch dumps of
spent washing and dyeing solutions and large volumes of rinse waters.
Another woolen mill diseharged wastes downstream at Corinna, Maine.
Also near Corinna. a potato canning company discharged phosphorus-rich
0 112
Figure 55. Sampling station locations on Lake Sebasticook, Maine.

wastes from the processing of 170 to 190 tons of potatoes daily during 9
to 10 months of the year.
The East Branch of Sebasticook River from Corinna, Maine, to the
inlet of Lake Sebasticook was severely polluted. Dye wastes colored the
water purple, and luxuriant growth of aquatic slimes, wool fiber mats,
potato sprouts, and rotting potatoes were visible in certain areas. Down-
stream, this reach divides naturally into three ponded areas totaling 167
acres that serve as waste stabilization sites. Floating masses of wool
dotted the surface of these waters and rising gas bubbles from decomposi-
Üon pockmarked the stream reach. The discharge from the downstream
waste stabilization site is the principal inlet to Lake Sebasticook.
Results of 1,400 nitrogen and phosphorus analyses showed that total
nitrogen added to Sebasticook Lake by the East Branch of the Sebasti-
cook River ranged from 445 to 778 lb./day during the 4 survey periods,
and total phosphorus ranged from 15 to 30 lb./day during the February,
May, and October surveys. Only 9.3 lb./day of total phosphorus were
added during the July survey, when the potato-canning company was not
in operation. In the Corinna area, about 85 percent of the nitrogen contri-
butions came from the woolen mill, and 55 percent of the phosphorus dis-
charged to the stream was from the canning company. Of all nitrogen and
phosphorus sources to Lake Sebasticook, the East Branch of the Sebasti-
cook River was the principal contributor because of discharges of
municipal and industrial wastes (Mackenthun et al., 1968).
Within one-half mile of Sebasticook Lake, 16,700 lb./yr of phosphorus
were contained in the fertilizers applied to 230 acres of agricultural lands
that grow potatoes, apples, alfalfa, beans, and corn. Some of these nu-
trients, perhaps 100 lb./yr, reached the lake and contributed to the algal
problem. This was approximately 0.6 percent of the phosphorus applied
to the agricultural soils and less than 2 percent of the annual total phos-
phorus entering Lake Sebasticook.
Waste disposal facilities for 269 shoreline dwellings included 190 septic
tanks and 79 privies. Assuming 4 persons per dwelling with an average
occupancy of 3 months, the population equivalent on an annual basis was
269 and the contribution of total phosphorus was 800 lb. Many private
wastewater disposal units either were located or discharged only 20 ft or
less from the waters of Lake Sebasticook and thus contributed between 5
and 10 percent of the total phosphorus load to the lake.
The soil and subsoil as well as the underlying strata through which un-
derground water passes are natural sources of lacustrine phosphorus.
Eight shallow wells and one spring located on the shores of Sebasticook
Lake were analyzed for nitrate-nitrogen and total phosphorus. With the
exception of a 38-ft artesian well with 3.45 mg/l, the NO 3 -N in these well
samples did not exceed 0.04 mg/I. The total phosphorus in one well was
0.07 mg/l, in an 18-ft deep well and a 2-ft deep spring it was 0.02 mg/I,
and in the remaining wells was 0.01 mg/I or less.

Lake Sebasticook lies in a forest transition zone between the spruce-fir
and northern hardwoods forests. Tamarack, eastern hemlock, white pine,
spruce, balsam fir, maples, beech, black ash, and quaking aspen abeund.
The amount of nitrogen from pollen may be as high as 2 to 5 pounds per
acre per year in a forested area (McGauhey et a!., 1963). Pollen contains
phosphate in addition to nitrogen, but pollen is known to remain essen-
tially intact in the sediments and it cannot be assumed that these materials
are released to the lake water. Likewise, about 20 pounds of nitrogen and
2 pounds of phosphorus per acre are returned annually to the soil by f or-
est tree leaves (Donahue, 1961). The amounts of these materials reach-
ing Lake Sebasticook would depend upon the leaching of soluble
materials to the lake from adjacent leaf liner and that direct contribution
arising from wind-blown leaves. This amount would be expected to be
small in comparison to the total nutrient loading to the lake.
Vertical water temperatures and dissolved oxygen concentrations were
taken during the May, July, and November studies from the deepest por-
lion of the lake (fig. 56). The May study was conducted just following
the spring overturn, and the November study was conducted during the
fall overturn when the entire water volume of the lake was being mixed
by winds. Dissolved oxygen was present from surface to bottom and espe-
cially during November the temperature did not vary from surface to bot-
During the latter part of July, Lake Sebasticook was stratified. The
thermocline began at a depth of 32 feet and extended downward to 44
feet. The dissolved oxygen was less than 1 mg/I at the beginning of the
thermocline and was zero at a depth of 35 feet. The dissolved oxygen
curves for the afternoon of July 29 and the morning of July 30 have a
different profile in the upper waters and reflected the effects of the large
mass of algae that was present at this time.
Analyses for organic N, NHrN, N0 3 -N, total P, and soluble P were
made on 820 water samples collected vertically at 10-ft intervals from 5
stations within the lake (fig. 55). During February, maximum ammonia
nitrogen and organic nitrogen concentrations combined to make total ni-
trogen values of 3.3 mg/I in the surface waters and 6.2 mg/I in the pro-
fundal waters. Total phosphorus was stratified with depth; it was 0.05
mg/I in the surface waters and 0.37 mg/I in the profunda! waters. Soluble
phosphorus was 0.011 mg/I in the surface waters. During spring and
summer, the total nitrogen decreased to about half of the February
values; however, the inorganic nitrogen exceeded 0.3 mg/I at all depths
and was greater than 0.45 mg I in the surface waters. Total phosphorus
was 0.05 mg/I in the surface waters in May and 0.06 to 0.07 mg/i in
summer. Soluble phosphorus concentrations were 0.004 in autumn. Con-
sidering the four seasons, there was no reduction in nitrogen passing
through the lake.

T.mpratvrs F
TImpsratur. F
I • F•j T
o 4 / I
20 b /
30 —
July 29. 1965
4 0O PM
— I I I I I
0 2 4 6 6 10
Diuolved Oxygen (mg/I)
Figure 56. Vertical temperature and dissolved
Sebasticook, Maine
Tevnperaturs F
0• 40 sd ’
I’ I
10— k
• ,.II
Novsmbr 2,
I I 1 1 11
02 4 6 6 10 12
Dissolved Oxygen (mg/I)
oxygen curves, Lake
Total phosphorus in the lake was most abundant during the summer
(table 10). During the autumn and winter seasons the phosphorus was
at the annual minimum. The ratio of total to soluble phosphorus was 2.8
in February. 12.7 in May. 7.0 in August, and 4.1 in November this vari-
ation may be attributed to changes in amounts of algal growth during the
different seasons. If the 4 sampling periods are representative of the 4
seasons of the year, the lake received 8,000 lb of total phosphorus annu-
ally; it dischargd 4,150 lb and retained 48 percent of the phosphorus. The
period of water detention in the lake was calculated to average 3.5 yr.
40 —
0 .
a i
20. 965
0 2 4 6 6 10 12
DIssolved Oxygen (mg/I)
0 2 4 1 S
Dissolved Oxygen (mg/I)

Table 10. Nutrient and Algal Quantities in Lake Sebasticook, Maine, 1965
Pounds February May August November
Algae (wet) (x 10 6 ). 2.29 2.70 4.4—9.7 2.46
TotalP(x10 3 ) 9.2 11.4 14.8 9.1
Soluble P(x10 3 ). 3.3 0.9 2.1 <2.2
Organic N (xlO’) 390 222 197 197
Inorganic N (xlO’). 321 109 89 25
Phytoplankton counts in the surface waters of the lake ranged from
600/mi in February to 212,000/mi during a bloom on August 1. The vol-
ume of the algal mass varied between 15 and 19 p.p.m. in the surface wa-
ters except during the summer study, when 48 p.p.m. and 560 p.p.m.
were recorded. The wet weight of phytoplankton per surface area was cal-
culated to be 530 lb./acre in February, 630 in May, 1,000—2,260 in Au-
gust, and 570 in November.
In the stabilization area, just upstream from the lake inlet, the quantity
of chlorophyll a increased gradually toward the inlet of Lake Sebasticook
(fig. 57). The grossly polluted water entering this area supported very
few algae. As this water became less polluted through the setting of sus-
pended solids and the decomposition and stabilization of organic mate-
rials, algae increased in numbers as nutrients became available from de-
composing wastes.
A 19-inch sediment core was collected from a depth of 53 feet in Lake
Sebasticook. Segments of the core were oven dried and analyzed for the
percentage of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus (table 11).
The dry weight phosphorus (P) in the 0—1 inch stratum was 0.15 per-
cent. Assuming the lake bed sediments contain 15 percent solids, the up-
per 1-inch stratum of Lake Sebasticook just beneath the mud-water inter-
face might then contain about 200,000 pounds of phosphorus. The 1—2
inch stratum contained 0.09 percent phosphorus or about 120,000 pounds
for the entire lake—some 80,000 pounds less phosphorus than the inch
immediately above it. The 2—3 inch stratum contained 0.06 percent or
about 80,000 pounds of phosphorus. Beneath the 1—2 inch stratum the
phosphorus content ranged from 0.06 to 0.09 percent on a dry weight
Several 1-inch segments of the core were examined microscopically to
enumerate diatom fragments and complete skeletons (table 12). Diatom
shells or skeletons are composed of siliceous minerals that resist decom-
position. Beginning at the mud-water interface with the most recent depo-
sition and proceeding downward within the sediments, two periods oc-
cuned within the examined history of the lake when the diatom
population increased at a rapid rate. This phenomenon would be expected
during periods of accelerating enrichment. These periods occurred during
the time between deposition of the 1—2 and 4—5-inch strata, and earlier
between deposition of the 7—8 and 1 1—12-inch strata. The periods appear

9 I
Figure 57. Chlorophyll entering Lake Sebasticook, July 29, 1965.
to be separated by years when the diatom production was less phenome-
The kinds of diatoms found are also indicative since different species
attain abundance in different types of ater. Those kinds predominating
in the upper Lake Sebasticook sediments were: Steplianodiscus astraea
0 10 20 30 40 50

Table 11. Organic Carbon, Nitrogen, and Phosphorus in Sediments
Lake Sebasticook, 1965
Lake sedimentcore
Percent dry weight
1 —2
15—16 .
(Ehr.) Grunow apud Cleve and Grunow, Melosira italica (Ehr.) Kutz-
ing, Fragilaria crotoensis Kitton, and Asterionella formosa Hassall. These
same species were found in the upper sediments of much-studied, eu-
trophic Linsley Pond in Connecticut (Patrick, 1943). Patrick records that
these species are characteristic of and reach their best development in eu-
trophic waters.
Lake Tahoe, California-Nevada
Lake Tahoe, astride the California-Nevada state line in the Sierra Ne-
vade Mountains, is one of the clearest, deepest freshwater lakes in the
world. Situated at an elevation of 6,225 feet, Lake Tahoe is 192 square
miles in area (122,880 acres) and has a length of 21.6 miles and a width
of 12 miles. The lake’s maximum depth is 1,645 feet; its mean depth is
990 feet, and its volume is approximately 122 million acre feet. The
1,200-foot depth contour is often less than a mile from the nearest shore,
Table 12. Diatom Remains in Lake Sebasticook Sediments
Segment core Diatom particles
(depth in inches) (millions per gram)
1—2 326.4
4—5 54.8
5-6 47.4
6—7 45.8
7—S 40.2
8—9 22.3
9—10 7.7
11—12 2.7
18—19 0.1

and never more than three miles. The Tahoe drainage basin is 506 square
miles .
At the present time,* the waters of Lake Tahoe are not enriched, nor
do they support dense algal populations. Threats of future problems are
serious, however. The phosphorus concentration in some near-shore areas
is now at a critical level for the stimulation of algal growths, and all of the
phosphorus present as shown by analytical tests is available for algal utili-
zation. Available nitrogen concentration is presently low and is believed
to be the major nutrient limiting algal development beyond the lake’s
present capacity. Potentially nuisance-producing blue-green algae and fila-
mentous green algae are now present in some near-shore areas of the
lake. Furthermore, the impact of nutrients from inflowing streams on the
lake water was demonstrated by increased phosphorus concentrations and,
in some cases, increased algal concentrations. Presently, this impact is
limited to the near-shore waters surrounding the stream’s mouth.
Temperature data indicate that the lake stratifies and that a thermocline
occurs at a depth of 50 to 70 feet during summer months. Complete over-
turn has not been observed but may occur during winters of unusual se-
Observations have been made on water transparency by viewing a
white disc, approximately 8 inches in diameter, as it was lowered in the
water. The white disc was observed to a depth of 136 feet at one station
on April 4, 1962. This may be compared to a transparency value of 5
feet, or less, in a eutrophic lake with a heavy algal bloom. A minimum
transparency of 49 feet, associated with a relatively high concentration of
plankton, was observed in Tahoe’s Emerald Bay on May 21, 1962. Al-
though transparency measurements have been made on several occasions
during the past 90 years by different investigators, no significant long-
term trend can be detected.
Two of the major nutrients, nitrogen and phosphorus, are always of in-
terest in connection with lake investigations because of their role in biotic
production and in nuisance plant growths. Samples were analyzed from
12 offshore sampling points and 45 near-shore points for nitrate nitrogen
(N) and soluble phosphorus (P) during both May and July. Nitrate ni-
trogen was present in an average concentration of 92 p g N/l in May and
8.0 pg N/l in July in the offshore areas, and 6.4 pg N/l during both
months at near-shore stations. Concentrations of ammonia nitrogen, ni-
trite nitrogen and organic nitrogen were below the analytical limits. The
average concentration of soluble phosphorus was 5.1 and 10.9 pg P, 1 in
May and July respectively in the offshore areas and 6.1 and 8.7 pg P/tin
May and July respectively in the near-shore areas. No significant differ-
* Report on Pollution in the Lake Tahoe Basin, California-Nevada by A. W.
West and K. M. Mackenthun in cooperation with the Southwest Regional Office,
San Francisco, Calif., U.S. Department of the Interior, Federal Water Pollution
Control Administration, Cincinnati, Ohio, July 1966.

ence between concentrations of soluble and total phosphorus was found,
indicating that all phosphorus was in the soluble form.
Thirty-nine samples were collected from a depth of about 100 feet for
plankton and chlorophyll determinations. Essentially all of the phyto-
plankton were diatoms. All counts were less than 500 organisms per ml
with the exception of some near-shore areas. The Tahoe City boat harbor
had 1,260 organisms per ml in April and 3,890 in July; both are consid-
ered algal blooms.
At the time that phytoplankton collections were made, water samples
were analyzed for chlorophyll. Although chlorophyll a concentrations are
considered low with a maximum July concentration of 1.74 mg/rn , areas
where chlorophyll a concentrations are greatest are located principally
around the south and east near-shore (figure 58). Other areas of the
lake have values less than 0.3 mg/rn .
Organisms that are able to attach themselves to the surface of an object
were studied by means of microscopic glass slides that were suspended in
the lake water at different depths and removed at weekly intervals and ex-
amined microscopically. Bacteria outnumbered all other organisms and in
some cases were the only organism found.
Although organisms of the type that produce objectionable growths
such as filamentous algae, including blue-greens, are already present in
near-shore areas, they are not now excessive because of low nutrient con-
centrations and a resulting low growth rate.
Lake Michigan
In a biological study of Lake Michigan* it was found that massive
areas along the perimeter of the southern half of the lake were polluted to
such an extent that large populations of pollution-tolerant sludgeworms
occurred. The 2,100-square-mile area classified as polluted in figure 59,
extending from Chicago northeastward around the southern tip of Lake
Michigan, resulted from organic nutrients discharged by the large metro-
politan areas bordering the lake. Lake sediments supporting populations
of sludgewonns greater than 100 per square foot (approximately 1,000
per square meter) are considered polluted. Other areas with polluted
lake bed sediments occurred in Green Bay, adjacent to the shorelines of
Manitowoc, Sheboygan, Port Washington to Waukegan, and between
Ludington and Manistee. Despite generally higher sludgeworm densities
in inshore areas, the average number of organisms was depressed in a
narrow band along the Chicago and Indiana shoreline. This was proba-
bly a result of wave action in the inshore areas which did not allow the
settling of fine organic particles.
The waters of Chicago Harbor, Calumet Harbor and Indiana Harbor
each contained excessive amounts of algal-stimulating nutrients. In Chi-
* Lake Michigan Basin Biology, Federal Water Pollution Control Administration,
Great Lakes Region, Chicago, L II., January 1968.

cago Harbor, soluble phosphates (P0 4 ) averaged 0.04 mg/i and ranged
as high as 0.15 mg/i. In Calumet Harbor, soluble phosphates averaged
0.05 mg/I and ranged as high as 0.14 mg/i; total inorganic nitrogen aver-
aged 0.35 mg/I/N and ranged as high as t.02 mg/i. Indiana Harbor
water contained an average of 0.05-mg/i soluble phosphate and ranged
as high as 0.12 mg/i. Total inorganic nitrogen averaged 1.56 mg/i and
Figure 58. Lake Tahoe chlorophyfl a values.

10,0 SO *0
Figure 59. Lake
Michigan sludgeworrn populations, number per square
ranged as high as 3.14 mgi. A concentration of 0.30 mg l inorganic ni-
trogen is considered critical for stimulation of algal growth in the pres-
ence of adequate phosphorus.
Tr.,.vis. -
di t. ,

• 1000— 00OO
— •

Phytoplankton populations in the Chicago-Calumet area remained
dense during the period of study. In 1962, up to 1,298 organisms per mu-
liliter were found. In 1963, phytoplankton populations increased to 2,143
phytoplankton organisms per milliliter. Light penetration in the Indiana
Harbor Canal was severely restricted; a Secehi disc was not visible at one
The distribution of phytoplankton in Lake Michigan was generally in-
fluenced by wind-produced currents. In spring, 1962, over 500 phyto-
plankton per milliliter were collected from inshore waters, beginning at
the Chicago-Calumet area and continuing north up the entire eastern lake
shore (fig. 60). By the summer of 1962, the current pattern had changed;
phytoplankton distribution became more random, except for high num-
bers of organisms (over 300 per ml) near Chicago and South Haven.
Fall, 1962, phytoplankton counts again revealed high concentrations of
over 500 organisms per milliliter along both the southeastern and south-
western shores.
Bat/fish Creek, Wisconsin
In the early history of Madison, Wis., Lake Monona received its raw
sewage and later treated sewage effluent. In 1962, the Nine-Springs sew-
age-treatment plant was placed in operation and the effluent from this in-
stallation was carried via Nine-Springs Creek to the Yahara River up-
stream from Lakes Waubesa and Kegonsa. The enrichment of these lower
Madison lakes by the highly nutritious effluent produced nuisance algal
growths, offensive odors, and periodic fish kills. These conditions led to
innumerable complaints, much debate, and evenutally legislative and legal
action, which forced the diversion of effluent from the Madison Metro-
politan Sewage District’s Nine-Springs Treatment Plant around the lower
Madison lakes.
The route chosen for the diversion of the Nine-Springs effluent necessi-
tated five miles of 54-inch pipeline and nearly 4 miles of open ditch
which led southward and entered Badfish Creek. Badfish Creek was
straightened and improved to a width of at least 16 feet for 10 of its 14.5
miles of length. The unimproved portion after some meandering, enters
the Yahara River downstream from the Madison lakes. Badfish Creek is a
small stream that flows through typical oak opening agricultural lands in
Dane and Rock Counties. Portions of the stream have had a history of
being marginal trout water.
The Nine-Springs Sewage Treatment Plant provided primary and sec-
ondary treatment for all wastes from the Madison Metropolitan area of
85 square miles with a population of about 135,000. Flow through the
plant averaged about 20 million gallons per day. Primary treatment con-
sisted of screening, grit collection, and sedimentation. About one-fourth
of the sewage received secondary treatment by the trickling filter process,

• . . MJCH
Gr•*n Bay.. I
Figure 60. lake Michigan phytoplankton populations, number per milliliter,
Spring, 1962.
and about three-fourths of the sewage received secondary treatment by
the activated sludge process. The effluent received chlorination.
As the effluent left the 54” pipeline, it entered a rather straight ditch
[ J 0-300/mi.
• ov.r 500/mi.
I .
O 25
I--.- ’

with steep banks. The first approximately one-half mile of this ditch often
carried a blanket of detergent foam. Approximately one mile farther
downstream, the banks of the ditch became Tess steep, and as early as 1
year following diversion, there was evidence of vegetation encroachment,
principally round-stemmed bulrush. Badfish Creek itself was dredged to a
bottom width of 16 feet for approximately 4 miles, and a bottom width
of 20 feet for the remaining 6 miles of improved stream. Along with the
changes wrought by physical disturbance, there was a change in flow pro-
duced by the introduction of approximately 20 million gallons per day of
effluent. Prior to diversion, Badfish Creek at about its midpoint between
its origin and confluence with the Yahara River had an average flow of
9.6 c.f.s. for the 2½ years in which records were kept. Following diver-
sion, the flow averaged 43 c.f.s.
Concurrent with the discharge of quantities of suspended solids, a
sludge deposit built up over most of the upstream portions of Badfish
Creek (Mackenthun et al., 1960). In some areas, especially in small
pockets along the sides of the stream, this deposit approached 6 to 10
inches in depth. In most of the upstream region, as well as the ditch itself,
the sludge was of sufficient thickness to produce a suitable habitat for a
bountiful population of midge larvae.
Prior to and after diversion, organic nitrogen in Badfish Creek in-
creased from 0.73 to 4.1 mg/i. Soluble phosphorus (P) rose from 0.19 to
5.96 mg/l. Following diversion the streams biochemical oxygen demand
was 17.3 mg/I.
The mean phytoplankton volume showed no statistical difference either
between stations on a given river or between the two periods of study for
the same station. It thus appears that a sizable increase in nutrients in a
ifowing water situation had no substantial effect upon a volumetric pro-
duction of phytoplankton.
Organisms that dwell upon and within the bottom deposits were studied
at seven separate stations on four different dates in Badfish Creek.
Following diversion, the improved portion of Badfish Creek still main-
tained a coarse gravel bottom, and in the upstream reaches, the stream
was choked with submerged vegetation. In the downstream reaches, this
vegetation appeared to be less dense than before diversion. Long stream-
ers of filamentous green algae (Stigeoclonium and Rhizoclonium), some
of which were estimated to be 50 feet in length, were attached to bottom
materials at numerous locations. In the upper areas of the stream, there
was a green blanket of Oscillatoria covering the bottom. Sludge had de-
posited along the edges of the stream and covered portions of the vegeta-
tion. A definite sewage odor was present in upstream reaches in Septem-
ber, and this odor extended the full length of Badfish Creek in December,
1959. Much of the stream bed was covered with a slimy mat of the blue-
green algae Oscillatoria, and especially in the December survey, much of
the vegetation was covered with a prolific growth of a stalked protozoa

belonging to the family Epistylidae. These formed a gray mass not unlike
a dense growth of fungus.
The degradation of the stream following diversion is apparent when
one examines the community of biological life living upon and within the
bottom materials. Prior to diversion, between 10 and 14 different inverte-
brate species were recovered from each of the samples collected. Follow-
ing diversion, the number of species was reduced to about five.
Prior to diversion, also, a balanced community of intolerant and toler-
ant organisms were observed. At nearly every station, caddisfly larvae
(Cheurnatopsyche and Hydropsyche), mayfly nymphs (I3aezis and Cae-
nis), and riffle beetle larvae were found in association with cranefly lar-
vae, horsefly larvae, scuds, and miscellaneous midges. Very tolerant forms
such as sludgeworms (Tubificidae) were also found, but occurred in very
low numbers. In some locations, the intolerant caddisily larvae formed
most of the total population.
Following diversion, all stations in the ditch and in the improved por-
tion of Badfish Creek supported a bottom-dwelling population comprised
of sludgeworms (Tubificidae) and at least three species of very tolerant
midge larvae (Tendipes plumosus, T. tendipediforniis, and T. decorus).
These were all considered to be very tolerant organisms and were found
to be living in the sludge deposits on the bottom and along the sides of
the stream. Near the lower end of Badfish Creek in the unimproved por-
tion, tolerant and very tolerant bottom-dwelling organisms predominated.
Occasionally, an intolerant form was observed, but this was only one
among many of the more tolerant forms.

San Diego Bay
SAN Diego Bay, a crescent shaped natural water body, has a length ap-
proximating 15 miles, a maximum width of 2½ miles and a surface
area of about 18.5 square miles. Water depths vary from less than 1 foot
in the southern end to 41 feet in the harbor entrance. The bay is sur-
rounded by metropolitan San Diego with a population of over 860,000.
The shoreline area, with the exception of a few small sections, has been
developed for residential, recreational, military, or industrial uses. A
deep-water harbor and extensive docking facilities permit use of the bay
for naval activities, maritime commerce, industrial use, research, aesthetic
enjoyment and recreation. Varied forms of practiced recreation include
boating, fishing, swimming, water skiing, and wading.
There is no dilution of San Diego Bay by freshwater in summer and
salinities range from 33 to 34 parts per thousand (p.p.t.) over the entire
year except in the south end of the bay where evaporation may increase
salinities to 35 or more p.p.t. Average water temperature varies from a
high of about 26° C. during late summer to a low of 14—16° C. during
Prior to 1963, municipal and industrial wastes from the metropolitan
areas were discharged to the bay. Since the completion of an off-shore
ocean outfall, wastes now entering the bay are minimal. The objective of
the biological survey from October 8 to 28, 1967, was to assess the ef-
fects of pollution from ships and industries on San Diego Bay* biota.
San Diego Bay was divided into South Bay, Central Bay, and North
Bay and 59 sampling stations were selected to depict aquatic life (fig.
61). A Petersen dredge was used to collect bottom-associated organisms.
After a bottom sample was collected with the dredge. it was placed in a
* San Diego Bay. An Evaluation of the Benthic Environment. L. P. Parrish and
K. M. Mackenthun. Technical Advisory and Investigations Branch, Federal Water
Pollution Control Administration. 5555 Ridge Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1968.

/2 0
1000 50U U
hgure i. sampiung stations on san Diego say, aiir., October 1967

small tub. Water was added and the sample was mixed to a slurry and
strained through a U.S. Standard No. 30 sieve. The organisms and coarse
debris were removed from the sieve and preserved for later examination.
To determine the extent and condition of sludge deposits, core samples
were collected with a Ph leger type coring device. Sludge depths were de-
termined by measuring the length of penetration of the coring device, evi-
dent as a smear of sludge or mud on the outside of the tube, and the
length of core collected. Core length was divided into the length of pene-
tration to obtain a multiplication factor for the amount of compaction.
This factor multiplied by the length of sludge-like material in the core
equalled the assumed sludge depth.
South Bay was affected only slightly by pollution. In six of eight areas
sampled, there were at least seven species of organisms and as many as
13 species in the sandy bottom at station 53. The most evident pollution
was in the cooling effluent channel from a steam electric plant where the
rocky bottom was covered with black sludge and filamentous algae (sta-
tion 50). A water temperature of 880 F. was recorded here at the time of
sampling. Floating mats of dead algae were evident and materials from
the bottom had a distinct hydrogen sulfide odor. Polychaete worms num-
bered 1,400 per square foot. denoting a polluted area; only two kinds of
other organisms were found in this channel, a pollution-tolerant snail
being the more numerous. The channel contained 25 inches of organic
sludge with 2.3 percent organic carbon and 0.16 percent nitrogen, indica-
the of organic debris. These sludges developed because of the rapid
growth, die-off and deposition of plants and animals in the heated ef-
In contrast, on the opposite side of a jetty separating the effluent chan-
nel from the bay (station 49), 188 po lychaetes per ;quare foot and seven
kinds of adidtional organisms indicated a cooler and unpolluted environ-
ment. A gray mud and sand mixture contained 1.6 percent organic carbon
and 0.16 percent organic nitrogen.
Central Bay was the most polluted. Near the center of the bay, station
54 indicated slight pollution only and supported 9 kinds of animals. Near
San Diego’s shore, many stations supported only polychaete worms and
these ranged from 10 to 1,300 per square foot depending upon the degree
of inhibitory toxins within the sludge. Severe organic pollution resulted in
very low numbers of polychaetes with no other kinds of organisms. Other
stations supported 1 to 3 organisms in numbers that seldom exceeded 6
per square foot in addition to the polychaete worms.
Sludge extended outward from shore to the area of the pierhead line.
Within this area a gradation from active sludge inshore to a more stable
sludge in the pierhead area was found. Sludge depth was determined to be
44 inches at one station and to exceed 30 inches at 9 of 16 station meas-
urements in this area. Organic carbon varied from 2.2 to 9.9 percent and
organic nitrogen from 0.14 to 0.91 percent. Comparing these data to

those presented in table 7, much of the sludge was indicated to be fresh
and actively decomposing.
North Bay had localized areas of pollution. Close to shore in the Car-
rier Basin, only polyebaetes numbering 190 per square foot were found.
Approximately 600 yards from shore, bottom materials had stabilized
enough to support 40 po lychaetes and 30 molluscs of one species per
square foot. Over 30 inches of stable sludge with 2.0 to 2.2 percent or-
ganic carbon covered the moderately polluted bottom. Before 1963, the
sewage outfall for the city of Coronado was located just east of the basin.
Since the basin exceeds 40 feet in depth with little circulation, a sludge
buildup resulted. Settleable solids discharged from carriers docked in the
basin would also contribute to the sludge bed.
Across the bay, at the junction of B Street pier and the shoreline, a
storm sewer outfall discharged organic wastes and other debris from the
San Diego Zoo. Samples of the bottom within an approximately 40,000-
square-foot area surrounding the outfall contained oil and black sludge
that emitted hydrogen sulfide odors. The area supported 100 to 1,200
polychaetes per square foot and other pollution-tolerant organisms.
Inside Harbor Island (station 12), 6,500 polychaete worms per square
foot were the only organisms found, in contrast to 90 worms per square
foot and 8 kinds of organisms at station 13. Sand had been dredged from
the area near station 12. A depression in the bottom had collected organic
debris from the surrounding sand when it was redistributed, and provided
an organically polluted substrate resulting from dredging.
Many polyehaete worms, 3,400 per square foot, were found at the en-
trance to the Commercial Basin. Bottom materials were primarily sand.
Hallway between the entrance and the end of the basin, a population of
2,000 polychaetes per square foot were found in a sand and clay mixture.
Three-fourths of the distance into the basin, a soft, black-decayed sludge
supported 200 polychaetes per square foot and three other kinds of orga-
nisms including pollution-tolerant snails and crabs. Suspended organic
materials discharged from vessels docked in the area, and in water enter-
ing the bay, settled out of the slow moving water near the end of the bas-
in. The large number of polychaete worms in the basin indicated moder-
ate pollution.
Within North Bay, organic carbon within bottom sediments was not
found to exceed 2.2 percent and organic nitrogen did not exceed 0.18
percent, which indicated generally stable sludges or organic silts and
Analysis of all benthic data from San Diego Bay indicated that a find-
ing of less than 5 kinds of organisms or more than 200 polychaete worms
per square foot represented a polluted environment. Among all stations,
the organisms per square foot varied from 13 to 6,400 and polychaetes
made up 44 to 100 percent of the total numbers. Polychaete worms were

found at all stations. Other organisms were found at 75 percent of the sta-
tions, and at 2 stations in South Bay the number of organism kinds
reached 12 and 13.
Charleston Harbor, South Carolina
Samples of bottom-associated life, collected during September 20—24,
1965, revealed adverse conditions for benthos in several reaches of the
Charleston Harbor estuary. *
In the lower reaches of the Ashley River (fig. 62), pollution was evi-
dent from the vicinity of Highway No. 7 downstream to the rivefs mouth.
Midchannel benthic environments lacked bottom-associated organisms.
Deposits in the channel near particular outfalls were comprised of dark-
colored muds and oily substances that emitted odors similar to those of
petroleum. Bioassays conducted with such deposits on certain snails,
shrimps, and fish demonstrated that these muds were toxic to the orga-
nisms tested. Bottom deposits in downstream reaches to the mouth of the
river consisted of black muds and organic ma uer, and produced foul
odors like those of domestic sewage.
The lower reaches of the Cooper River contained significant discharges
of wastes from upstream sources. Pollution was evident in the Cooper
River in reaches immediately upstream and downstream from Buoy 60.
Sludge deposits were abundant, and bottom associated organisms were not
found. Marine worms were found in benthic environments both upstream
and downstream from these grossly polluted reaches. Partial recovery was
indicated near the mouth of the Cooper River where oysters and 7 other
kinds of animals were found; however, certain clean-water associated
forms such as shrimps and crabs were absent.
The Wando River was not discernibly polluted. Benthic reaches of this
river were composed of hard clays mixed with scraps of shells and vegeta-
tion, and provided conditions suitable for 3 kinds of clean-water associ-
ated shrimp.
Moderately polluted areas were apparent in the main harbor from the
mouths of the Ashley, Cooper, and Wando Rivers seaward to near Fort
Sumter. Benthic environments in these reaches supported only marine
worms. Bottom deposits were either black mud or black muds mixed with
bits of shells, clay, or sand. Deposits consisting only of black mud were
found in the reach south of Shutes Folly Island near the mouth of the
Cooper River, and in the reach west of Shutes Folly Island; these muds
emitted petroleum-like odors comparable to those associated with deposits
in the lowermost reaches of the Ashley River.
* A report on the water quality of Charleston Harbor and the effects thereon of
the proposed Cooper River rediversion. Federal Water Pollution Control Adminis-
tration, Southeast Water Laboratory, Charleston Harbor-Cooper River Project,
Charleston, S.C. 1966.

Sampling Station
Day Marker • S
. Berestord Creek /
WVaPuIp&Paper Mi 1
outfall area /
• BuoyC 19
Buoy 60 1(1
• •.
Co. outfall aria
Hwy 7 •
Dr I.
A C L Rrnlroad
Hwy. 17 . .. •• . ..:
.c5 . ,Shutes Folly c : : : : ; 7
:.:: .: Ft. urnter
1 2 3 4 . . / ‘9 - - - -
nai.tical miles
Figure 62. Biological sampling stations, Charleston Harbor 1965.
Benthic environments near Fort Sumter and seaward were not percepti-
bly polluted. Such environments were suitable for clean-water associated
shrimp, and clams or crabs. Phvtoplankton tended to be more abundant
than 3.5 p.p.m. in reaches inland from Shutes Folly Island, and was less
than 3.5-p.p.m. seaward from Shutes Folly Island. This distribution of
phytoplankton was apparently associated with estuarine enrichment in-
duced by waste discharges. Counts as numbers per ml. never exceeded

Boston Harbor, Massachusetts
Boston Harbor, one of the most heavily used harbors on the Atlantic
coast, is a major natural economic asset of Massachusetts. It is a water-
course that bridges the Atlantic Ocean to the Massachusetts coastline,
serves both commercial and military navigation, provides berthage, pro-
tects from heavy seas, provides recreation, produces food, and assimilates
untreated and partly treated sewage from 2.5 million people plus indus-
trial wastes from the Boston metropolitan area. Wastes from an additional
0.4 million people and several industries are added to Boston Harbor or
its tributaries from sources adjacent to the metropolitan area.
Boston Harbor has an area of approximately 44 square miles (28,000
acres), with depths ranging generally between 10 and 50 feet at mean low
tide. Extensive areas of the bay are less than 15 feet deep. Large-craft
navigation channels are dredged to maintain minimal depths of 30 feet,
and small-craft channels are maintained at a minimum depth near 12 feet.
Hydraulic and salinity features of the harbor are controlled chiefly by
tides and, to a much lesser extent, by fresh water discharges from tribu-
taries. The relatively small discharge of fresh water coupled with other
hydraulic features precluded development of a salt-wedge water mass, and
facilitated a vertically mixed type of estuary having more affinities with
embayments than estuaries and aquatic life that was marine rather than
Seven tributaries in addition to the Charles River drain into Boston
Harbor. Only four, the Maiden. Mystic, Charles, and Neponset Rivers,
discharge significant amounts of fresh water. The Chelsea, Weymouth
Back, Weymouth Fore, and Weir Rivers are tidal streams comprised
mostly of saline harbor water. During periods of low precipitation, the
tributary fresh water discharges to Boston Harbor were near 100 cubic
feet per second (e.f.s.) and the discharge of sewage and industrial wastes
exceeded 400 c.f.s. The total discharge of fresh waters during these peri-
ods did not drastically modify the salinity of the harbor. Except for
mouths of tributaries, salinity values in all harbor reaches during periods
of low precipitation were greater than 25 parts per thousand. Biological
studies of Boston Harbor and its tributaries were conducted to assay wa-
ter quality and its effect on aquatic life.*
The Charles River is the principal tributary to Boston Harbor. Numer-
ous waste sources from combined sewers severely polluted this stream in
reaches used intensively for recreation near its mouth. Only one kind of
organism was found at mile 4.0, and none was found at mile 0.6 near the
Longfellow Bridge. The paucity of organisms suggested that toxic condi-
tions prevailed, thereby precluding establishment of bottom-associated an-
* Biological Aspects of Water Quality Charles River and Boston Harbor, Mass.
R. K. Stewart, Federal Water Pollution Control Administration, Technical Advisory
and Investigations Branch, 5555 Ridge Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1968.

imal life. Black oozv muds that emitted foul odors and contained oily res-
idues were found here, and the surface of the river was pock-marked with
bursting gas bubbles. The many combined sewers discharged highly
carbonaceous and nitrogenous wastes. The organic carbon content of
sludges near the rivers mouth was 13.7 percent and organic nitrogen was
0.70 percent. The waters contained 940 LLg/ 1 inorganic nitrogen (N), 270
Ltg/1 total phosphorus (P), and 180 g/1 soluble phosphorus. Phyto-
plankton populations exceeded 10,000 cells per ml.
In addition to the Charles River, certain other tributaries contributed
polluted water to Boston Harbor. The Mystic River at the Route 16
bridge near Medford. Mass. (fig. 63). supported only one kind of bottom
animal. Substantial quantities of oily residues were observed in the black
sludge that cevered the river bottom. Additional qualitative sampling dis-
closed that black sludge deposits predominated in the benthic environ-
ment of the Mystic Riser to its confluence with the Maiden River. Phyto-
plankton densit in surface waters was high. exceeding 40 p.p.m., or
29.000 cells per milliliter.
The Maiden River was severeR polluted upstream from its confluence
Figure 63. Station locations in Boston Harbor and tributaries.

with the Mystic River. Bottom-associated animals were not found, and 4
inches of black sludge mixed with oily residues covered the stream bot-
tom. Surface waters contained more than 60,000 phytoplankton per mil-
liliter that amounted to a density of 13.8 p.p.m. The Maiden and Mystic
Rivers contributed severely polluted waters to the inner reaches of Boston
Marine waters supporting polychaete worms prevailed in all but one of
the remaining tributaries and in all Boston Harbor reaches. Polychaete
worms were sufficiently common in these waters that their abundance was
used to show areas and degrees of over-enrichment. The use of marine
worms for these purposes is not unlike the use of sludgeworms to deline-
ate areas of over-enrichment in fresh waters because the nutritional and
substrate requirements of both groups of organisms are similar. Poly-
chaete worm populations that exceeded a density of 200 per square foot
in the marine waters of Boston Harbor were considered indicative of ex-
cessive enrichment (fig. 64).
The confluence of the Chelsea, Mystic. and Charles Rivers forms Bos-
Figure 64. Number of polychaete worms per square foot, Boston Harbor and
tributaries, July—August 1967.

ton Inner Harbor. Tidal currents in Boston Inner Harbor are strong and
would displace rapidly the wastes entering the area from these tributaries,
but additional wastes entering the Inner Harbor exceed the waste disper-
sal capacity of the currents. Consequently, some wastes from local and
tributary sources are deposited here as sludge. Qualitative samples taken
in the vicinity of the confluence of these tributaries showed that oily
sludges covered these bottom reaches of the Inner Harbor, and that the
predominant associated aquatic life were polychaetc worms. Settleable
solids from additional waste sources were deposited in the seaward reach
of Boston Outer Harbor north of Spectacle Island where they formed
sludge deposits that supported more than 5.000 polychaete worms per
square foot.
Dean water, as indicated by a great variety of benthic organisms, was
found seaward from Boston Harbor in Massachusetts Bay between Green
Island and the Brewester Islands. Qualitative samples from this area
showed that if supported at least 14 different groups of organisms. Many
of these were clean-water-associated animals such as chitons. sponges.
starfish, shrimp, brittle-stars, and crabs. Sludge-like deposits were not
present here, and bottom materials were comprised of clay, clean sand.
rocks, and rubble that also supported a variety of attached brown, green,
and red algae.
Sewage waste waters discharged through the many outfalls in Boston
Harbor and associated bays and tributaries caused very high concentra-
tions of ammonia nitrogen (N) and soluble phosphorus (P) that aver-
aged or exceeded 100 and 40 micrograms per liter, respectively in 390
samples from all reaches of the harbor inland from Massachusetts Bay.
The highest average concentrations of such nutrients in 22 samples oc-
curred in Boston Inner Harbor at station H—I. where ammonia nitrogen
was 200 micrograms per liter and soluble phosphorus was 70 micrograms
per liter. Maximum single sample concentrations were 300 micrograms
per liter ammonia nitrogen (N) and 120 micrograms per liter soluble
phosphorus (P) at station H—i.
High concentration of inorganic nutrients in these and certain associ-
ated waters caused excessively dense populations of phytoplanktori that
averaged more than 1,000 per milliliter in about 35 square miles or 66
percent of Boston Harbor, including the Weymouth Back and Fore Riv-
ers, and the saline reaches of the Chelsea, Charles, Maiden, and Mystic
Rivers (fig. 65). Studies in other marine and estuarine waters indicate
that phytoplankton populations more dense than 1.000 per milliliter are
indicative of over-enrichment in such waters.
In addition to causing excessive phytoplankton populations, the nu-
trients stimulated dense growths of attached marine plants. Observations
throughout Boston Harbor disclosed such growths on most buoy, pier.
and marina facilities. Several intertidal and shallow areas of the harbor
and certain reaches of Winthrop Bay also supported dense growths of at-

Figure 65. Average number of phytopiankton (number/mi.), in Boston
Harbor, August 1967.
tached marine algae. These cause noxious conditions in Winthrop Bay,
unsightly growths at marina facilities, and increase maintenance costs as-
sociated with buoys and piers. In Winthrop Bay, decomposing masses of
sea lettuce have caused hydrogen sulfide emissions sufficient to discolor
white paint on adjacent dwellings.
The 12.5 percent organic carbon and 0.34 percent organic nitrogen in
sludge of saline tributaries were found in the most inland reach of the
Chelsea River near the Broadway Street bridge; these values are indica-
tive of actively decomposing organic solids. Sludges from the bayward
reach of the Chelsea River. and from the Maiden, Mystic, and Neponset
Rivers had more than 4-percent organic carbon, and more than 0.10 per-
cent organic nitrogen. Such values are suggestive of excessively enriched
The highest percentages of organic carbon (23.5) and organic nitrogen
(1.29) associated with harbor sludges were found in the Fort Point Chan-
nel. This reach was very intensively polluted, and septic. Such values are

not unlike those associated with raw wastes from paekinghouses, sewage,
or rapidly decomposing sludge (table 7).
In addition to surface deposits, core samples from several harbor sta-
tions were analyzed. Those from stations somewhat distant from immedi-
ate waste sources and known channel dredging activities had decreasing
percentages of organic carbon ranging from 4.7 at the top of the core to
0.3 at the bottom, and organic nitrogen ranging from 0.48 to 0.03, sug-
gestive of gradual increases in percentage of organic matter with time and

O RGANISMS that may cause, or have been known to cause, trouble in
water supplies include several species of algae, protozoa, and dia-
toms that produce tastes and odors and clog filters, iron bacteria that pro-
duce nauseous tastes and odors and clog pipes, copepods whose eggs pass
through filters, very small nematode worms, sowbugs in the distribution
system, midge larvae or bloodworms, and snails and molluscs.
There may be present in surface waters, various types of organisms
both plant and animal, which vary in complexity and size. They are un-
common or absent in groundwater supplies unless stored in uncovered res-
ervoirs, but are common and widespread in surface waters. Perhaps none
of the organisms found in surface waters that may be used for domestic
purposes is injurious to health. The chief complaints against them are in-
terferences with filtration or other water treatment, and their effects upon
the palatability and aesthetics of the water. Organisms may accumulate in
such numbers that waters become unsightly and turbid, and many orga-
nisms impart disagreeable odors and colors to the water.
The need for aquatic biologists to participate in water works engineer-
ing was well stated by Lackey (1950) when he concluded that before a
source for a water supply is finally selected it should be surveyed by a
competent aquatic biologist to evaluate present and probable future No!-
ogical conditions that might affect water quality. Reservoirs and storage
facility plans should be reviewed by him to determine possible biotic
changes that may occur. The elimination of undesirable shallow areas can
often be accomplished more cheaply during construction than maintaining
these areas after reservoir filling. ln areas where growths of algae and
other aquatic plants present an annual problem, a study by a qualified
aquatic biologist may indicate causes for such growths and methods of
Reservoir Bed Preparation
Impounding water may result in the leaching of undesirable materials

from flooded soils. When present in excessive concentrations, several ma-
terials can interfere with desired water uses:
(1) Color is important in water supply sources because it is objec-
tionable aesthetically. The maximum recommended limit in Wa-
ter Quality Criteria (Anon. 1968) is 75 units in raw water, and
less than 10 units in finished water are desirable. Complaints
from consumers occur at 15 units and increase with additional
color. The measurement of color is based on an empirical scale
that is affected by the true color of the water, as well as the ma-
terial suspended in the water.
(2) Iron in water supplies should not exceed 0.3 mg./l, and its ab-
sence in finished water is desirable. In excess, it stains laundry,
produces a disagreeable taste, interferes with filtration, and sup-
ports iron bacterial growths within a water system. The amount
of iron present in water is dependent upon other chemical char-
acteristics of the water:
(a) It is more soluble when oxygen is absent.
(b) It is more soluble in acidic waters.
(c) Organic materials increase its solubility.
(3) Manganese should not exceed 0.05 mg./l in raw water and
should be absent from finished water because of stains imparted
to laundry, and objectionable tastes. Factors that affect its
quantity in water are similar to those for iron.
(4) Phosphorus concentrations in excess of 0.1 mg/l may interfere
with coagulation in water treatment plants and, in excess of
0.05 mg/I in water supplies, may stimulate the excessive growth
of algae and other aquatic plants. Excessive growths impart un-
desirable tastes and odors to water, interfere with water treat-
ment, become aesthetically unpleasing, interfere with recreation
and aquatic life, and alter the chemistry of waterways.
(5) The chemical state of nitrogen is dependent on the overall lim-
nology of the waterway. The decomposition of organic mate-
rials produces ammonia that, in an environment without abun-
dant oxygen, may not be oxidized to nitrate; ammonia reacts
with chlorine to form chloramines, which interfere with dis-
infection. In addition, nitrogen is a nutrient that supports exces-
sive aquatic vegetation that can interfere with water uses.
Sylvester (1965) studied a new impounding reservoir on the Green
River, Washington, where part of the inundated land had been heavily
forested, with a large swamp in the central impoundment area. The effect
of reservoir soil on the quality of the overlying water was studied during
the first two years of impoundment by analyzing samples of water from
the influent and effluent and from the reservoir 1 foot above the bottom
in selected areas. Examination of samples of soil, soil cores, and typical
forest debris indicated that the leaching and decomposition of organic

constituents in the soil may have profound adverse effects on the quality
of the water, particularly color, odor, corrosivity, and concentration of
dissolved oxygen, and may provide nutrients which support heavy growths
of algae. Organic substances in the latter stages of decay (humus) have
less effect than those in the early stages of decay. To prevent severe deg-
radation of water quality in new reservoirs, much of the woody debris
should be removed, particularly rotting logs and rotting stumps, and if
tests show that organic soils could have a marked effect over a significant
area of the reservoir, these soils should be excavated or covered with at
least 1 foot of mineral soil, which is effective in preventing adverse effects
on the overlying water. As a reservoir ages, the effects of the original soil
on the overlying water will diminish because of a decrease in the rate of
decay and the extraction of available solutes; and incoming silt and plank-
ton will gradually cover the original soils.
When new reservoir areas are flooded, vegetation is killed, there is de-
composition and leaching of the topsoil. and the release of nutritive mate-
rials provides a desirable environment for algae and other microscopic
organisms. Allen (1960) found that the rate of decomposition for organic
materials in an impoundment requires 10 to 15 years for stabilization,
with approximately 14-percent improvement annually. By carefully carry-
ing out a proper reservoir site preparation, he reasoned that odor prob-
lems could be avoided.
Hammerton (1959) discusses soil stripping during reservoir construc-
tion as a preventative of later biological problems. Sylvester and
Seabloom (1965) also discuss the merits of soil stripping. They conclude
that a site for an impounding water reservoir must be selected with care
because of the potential effects on water quality. The site characteristic
most responsible for undesirable effects was found to be the organic con-
tent of the soil. Its undesirable effects depended on time, temperature, and
light. Undesirable effects were proportional to the amount of organic mat-
ter in the soil and were inversely proportioned to the age or state of decay
of the organic materials.
Tastes and Odors
From a nationwide survey reported in 1957 (Sigworth, 1957), it was
indicated that algae were considered by 241 waterworks officials to be the
most frequent causes of tastes and odors in water supplies, with other
types of decaying vegetation second in importance. Decay or decomposi-
tion is brought about by fungi and bacteria, including the aetinomycetes.
Often a considerable proportion of the decaying vegetation is composed
of dead algal cells. The odors that are produced through the activities of
fungi and bacteria may be either from the intermediate products formed
during the decomposition or from special substances that are synthesized
within the cells of the microorganisms. The latter appears to be true in
the case of actinomycetales. Algae were listed as the causative agent in 82

percent of the reports, decaying vegetation in 67 percent, industrial wastes
in 38 percent, and other causes in 23 percent.
A few algae are well know for the production of specific distinctive
tastes and odors, while a larger number of others are associated with
tastes and odors that vary in type according to local conditions. Often
certain diatoms, blue-green algae, and pigmented flagellates are the princi-
pal offenders but green algae may also be involved. Thirty-nine species
have been selected by Palmer (1959) as representative of the more im-
portant taste and odor algae. They are listed alphabetically under their re-
spective groups in table 13. Other genera and species, in addition to the
ones selected, must be considered also as potential offenders.
Silvey (1963) noted a relationship between summer blooms of blue-
green algae and rapid growths of actinomycetes three to four weeks later
Most concentrated tastes and odors appear as associated with the latter.
Silvey and Roach (1964) state that”. . . it has been observed for many
years in the literature that the degradation of algal remains may result in
a multitude of types and intensities of odors and tastes in the water sup-
ply. Some odors are contributed directly by the algal degradation products
dissolved in the water, whereas others are merely described as decaying
vegetation.” Disintegrating algae are associated with increases in gram-
negative heterotrophic bacterial populations, following which there is gen-
erally a new growth of algae, either diatoms or blue-green algae. When
blue-green algae predominate and algal mats form on the surface or in
protected water areas, actinomycetes attack the remains of the algae thus
reducing the gram-negative heterotrophic bacteria. Various odors, de-
pending upon the predominant organism, its degradation products or me-
tabolites, are released. Silvey and Roach (1964) point out that when a
stream or reservoir is highly polluted, one cycle may impinge upon an-
other to the extent that total confusion results if attempts are made to
determine what stage of the microbiotic cycle is operating in a particular
water supply at a specific time.
Symons (1956) states that 500 to 1,000 areal standard units of odor-
producing organisms are generally conceded to cause trouble in water
supplies but the range varies widely for different organisms. The Metro-
politan Water Commission of Boston was quoted by Symons as setting
maximum allowable limits of troublesome algae before control treatment
was instigated. For some genera (e.g. Chiamydomonas) the level was as
low as 10 standard units per ml. For other flagellates such as Crypso-
mantis, Synura, and Uroglenopsis it was 200; for the blue-green alga,
Aphanizoinenon. the level was 1,000 area! standard units per ml.
Menasha, Wisconsin draws its water from Lake Winnebago, an algal-
laden surface supply. Taste and odor problems were severe in 1939 based
upon Marx’s (1951) statement, “. . . as an example of how bad the
water can get, during August of 1939 the water temperature was 85, the
algae count reached 50,000 units per ml., turbidity was 200 p.p.m. and

Table 13. Odors, tastes, and tongue sensations associated with algae in water
Actinastrum .
Ana ba en a
Ar ,abaenopsis.
Ch lamydomonas.
Ch lorella
Gom phosph aeria...
Pedia strum
Grassy, nasturtium: -
Grassy, nasturtium,
Geranium, spicy
Skunk, garlic.
Musty, grassy
Grassy, nasturtium.
Mu sty
Cucumber, muskmelon,
Spoiled, garlic...
Fishy, septic.
Fishy... .
Mu sty
Grassy, septic...
Musty, spicy....
Fishy.. .
Odor when
algae are—
Algal genus Moderate
Abundant Taste sensa-
Septic Sweet.
Septic Sweet. ... Dry.
Sweet. .., Slick.
Bitter.... Dry,
Geranium Fishy

the odor reached 300. A treatment of over 100 p.p.m. of carbon and 9
grains of alum, cut the odor down to about 15 and the turbidity down to
about 10, in the finished water. This water was obviously not satisfactory
for use, but nothing could be done about it.” In 1946, a 25-million gallon
pretreatment basin, giving a detention period of 7 or 8 days, with con-
crete baffles to “. . . force the water from one shore of the basin to the
other five times as it travels from the inlet to the outlet” was placed in op-
eration. As the water flows into the basin it is given a dosage of 2 mg/I of
copper sulfate throughout the algal season regardless of type of algae.
pumpage, or any other variable (Marx, 1951). By the time the water
reaches the water treatment plant inlet, the algae have been killed, they
have decomposed, the odors have been reduced an average of 67 percent
and just a very fine turbidity is left. In five years of use, less than an inch
of material settled on the bottom of the basin, according to Marx.
Oshkosh, Wis., gets its water from Lake Winnebago. Conditions in the
lake are ideal for prolific algal growths, reducing filter runs to as low as
60 minutes, which results in a great reduction in plant output and causes
water shortages during the summertime (Hartman, 1961). In view of the
fact that the city of Menasha, Wis., which also uses Lake Winnebago as
its source of water supply, had operated a pretreatment basin for several
years, it was concluded that pretreatment of this water with copper sulfate
should be considered. Treatment of the water with 2 parts per million of
copper sulfate followed by a 7 day retention period under maximum con-
ditions was determined to be the proper pretreatment. A presettling basin
was constructed in a bay by enclosing an area of approximately 30 acres
with an earthen dyke. This basin was baffled to prevent short circuiting.
The pretreatment provided has reduced the amount of water required for
backwashing from as much as 9.8 percent of the plant capacity in July
and August to 2.5 percent for the same 2 months. The number of filter
backwashes per day was reduced from 18.6 in 1959 to 3.8 in 1960, and
the water used for baekwashing was reduced from an average of 8 percent
in 1959 to 2.6 percent in 1960. Pretreatment has reduced the cost of
chemicals by almost 31 percent and the backwash water by 67 percent
while at the same time a better quality water was produced.
Roh]icb and Sarles (1949) discussed the products of bacteriai decom-
position of algae and their responsibility for odors and tastes in water.
They assumed that the proteins of algae permitted a full complement of
amino acids for bacterial action, and listed some 30 known odoriferous
compounds produced. Jenkins et al. (1967), using gas chromatographic
techniques, identified several odorous organic sulfur-containing com-
pounds from cultures of blue-green algae. The cultures were bacterially
contaminated and the odorous sulfur compounds most probably resulted
from bacterial putrefaction of the blue-green algal cells. Odorous sulfur
compounds included methyl mercaptan, dimethyl sulfide, isobutyl mercap-

tan, and n-butyl mercaptan. A compound produced by certain actinomy-
cete cultures, responsible for a persistent musty odor, was isolated in high
purity and identified by chemical and spectroscopic properties (Dougherty
etaL, 1966).
Dickson (1968) discussed the control of actinomycetic odors. He
noted that actinomycetes growing on the remains of blue-green algae pro-
duce the most intense odors and luxuriant growths. Listing 3 “fairly suc-
cessful” control techniques, he suggests algicides to control growths of
blue-green algae, activated carbon to absorb taste and odor compounds
and other organic substances, and the use of Bacillus cereus in concen-
trations of 1.2 x 10 to reduce rapidly the tastes and odors produced by
actinomycetes. The latter technique was successful at the Lake Hefner
treatment plant, Oklahoma City, when the bacteria were cultured in
5,000-gallon tanks for 24 to 36 hours and introduced into the reservoir
or pretreatment basin as either a preventative or control measure.
Filter Clogging Problems
As water passes through a sand filter in the water treatment plant the
spaces between the grains of sand become filled with colloidal and solid
particles that have been dispersed in the water. When the raw water
comes from a surface supply such as a reservoir, lake, or stream, the al-
gae that are invariably present will be well represented in the material col-
lected by the sand filter. They are frequently the primary causes of filter
Efficient coagulation and sedimentation may remove 90 to 95 percent
of the algae from the water. The algae remaining in the water may still be
sufficient to cause gradual or even rapid loss of head in the sand filter.
The clogged filter must then be backwashed. Filter runs may often extend
for 30 to 100 hours before backwashing is required, or may be shortened
to less than 10 hours when algae are present (Tarlton, 1949). In Chi
cago, when the water to be filtered contained approximately 700 microor-
ganisms per ml., principally two diatoms Tabellaria and Fragilaria, the fil-
ter runs were 4.5 hours. Three days later, when the count was down to
approximately 100 per ml., the filter run increased to 41 hours (Baylis,
1955). In Washington, D.C., filter runs were reduced from an average of
50 hours to less than 1 hour because of a sudden influx of the diatom Sy-
nedra, which occurred in the raw water and reached 4,800 cells per ml
(Lauter, 1937).
Most of the microscopic organisms present in water that is passing
through a rapid sand filter generally will be caught in the top one-half
inch of the sand. This is particularly the case when the organisms are
abundant in the water. A few of the organisms will penetrate deeper into
the filter bed while others disintegrate quickly as they come in contact

with the sand. The longer the filter run the greater the percentage of orga-
nisms that will penetrate below the top one-half inch.
In Chicago, a study was made of the number of certain diatoms that
were caught on the surface of rapid sand filters. The samples were col-
lected immediately before the filters were backwashed. During 1 year of
this study, Tabetlaria ranged in numbers from 496,000 to 936,000 per
square inch of filter surface in April, and from 1,824,000 to 8,016,000 in
November. In contrast, the range for Melosira was from 784,000 to
2,624,000 in April, and only 16,000 to 416,000 in November (Baylis,
Gamet and Rademacher (1960) found in a study of filter runs with
Lake Michigan water that 37 percent of the runs for all test filters in 12
filtration plants were less than 20 hours. A filter run of 20 hours was
taken as the economic breakpoint time. Loss in revenue for the 12 plants
was estimated at $226,000 for the 9-month period. Tabellaria was the
most important of the Lake Michigan plankton that exhibited filter-clog-
ging tendencies. In a followup study, Poston and Gamet (1964) reported
that excessive ifiter clogging at Cleveland was prevented by use of slightly
higher chlorine and alum doses; at Toledo, Ohio, short filter runs were
remedied by treatment with excess lime, with the lime floc carrying most
of the diatoms down in the sedimentation basin and by lengthening the fil-
ter runs from 3 to 24 hours; at Detroit, Mich., shortened filter runs during
winter and early spring have lasted as long as a month and alum costs in
excess of that required for turbidity were as high as $15,000 per month.
They reported that Tabellaria was beyond doubt the plankton genera
causing the most serious problem with filter runs with Lake Michigan wa-
ters although Asterionella, Melosira, Synedra in combination also reduced
ifiter runs, and Cyclotella, Stephanodiscus, Oscillatoria, Fragilaria and
Tribonema were reported to cause filter clogging.
DeCosta and Laverty (1964) reported that ifiter washes cost the East
Bay Municipal Utility District of Oakland, Calif., about one dollar apiece.
Microstraining has been succesfully used to alleviate organism prob-
lems in water supplies. At Kenosha, Wis., microstraining equipment was
installed at the water plant at an initial cost of $330,000 primarily to re-
duce microorganisms prior to filtration (Nelson, 1965). The output of fin-
ished water from this plant has been increased by up to 25 percent,
thereby providing 5 m.g.d. of extra water for sale to the public during
peak demand periods which otherwise would have been used to backwash
ifiters. Algal removals by microstraining have ranged from 46 to 97 per-
On 29 sampling dates extending from July 22 through September 6,
1961, water pumping rates at Kenosha varied from 10 to 27 m.g.d. and

from 1½ to 10 hours of sustained pumping.* The efficiency of the mi-
crostrainer depends on the number, size, and shape of the algal cell,and
whether or not the cells occur singly or in chains. Rate of pumpage did
not appear to affect efficiency in this study. The niicrostraincr was very
efficient in removing those algal cells occurring in chains, since the water
following the strainers contained only single cells or chains of 2 or 3 cells
in length. The algal mass was reduced from 141±10 to 11±3 pounds per
day (wet weight) in passing through the microstrainers for an overall vol-
umetric efficiency of 91.9 percent. The number of individual algal cells
was reduced from 47±11 trillion per day to 5±1 trillion in passing
through the microstrainers for an average reduction of 88.8 percent. The
efficiency of the microstrainer varies from one species of alga to another.
For example, there was little reduction in Ste phanodiscus spp. with the
passage of water through the microstrainer, because the species occurring
in these waters were small enough to pass with ease through the 35-mi-
cron mesh of the microstrainer.
In testing a pilot microstrainer of 35-micron aperture on Lake Winne-
bago, Wis., raw water in 1957, it was found that the poorest reduction
performance by the fabric was experienced on the dates when the plank-
ton counts were the highest. Blooms of A nabaena and Microcystis were
occurring. Five algal genera consistently passed through the microstraining
fabric. These were the blue-greens Anabaena and Aphanizomenon, the
diatoms Cyclotella and Navicula, and the green flagellate, Phacotus. On
July 25, 1957, the algal count on the intake water to the mierostrainer
was 10,030 organisms per ml and the reduction through the microstrainer
was 41 percent; on August 21, the raw water count was 47,270 organisms
per ml. and the reduction was 25 percent; on August 22 with a raw water
count of 30,350 the reduction was 16 percent (26,600 Anabaena spp, per
ml); and on August 28, the reduction was 37 percent with 4,740
organisms per ml. in the intake water.
Berry (1961) stated that during the 15 years that microstrainers have
been used at Belleville, Ontario, they have proven their value under pre-
scribed conditions. They are effective in the removal of algae. Care is
needed in the evaluation of conditions where they can be expected to
prove of service, and intelligent operation is required. Average filter runs
were increased from 14 to 52 hours at Belleville, and the number of
washes were cut to ¼ of their former frequency (Seriven, 1960). About
1¼ percent of production was required to wash the microstrainers.
Tune (1959) reported that a microstrainer had been installed at the
Marston Lake South Side Filter Plant, Denver, Co b., and that microor-
ganism removals exceeded 91 to 95 percent.
* Nelson, 0. F., K. M. Mackenthun, and L. A. Lueschow, 1961. Microstraining
at Kenosba. Paper Presented at Wisconsin Section, American Water Works Associa-
lion, Milwaukee, Wis. (Sept. 28) 15 pp. (mimeo.).

Corrosion Problems
Algae sometimes contribute to corrosion either directly in localized
places where they may be growing or through their modification of the
water by physical or chemical changes. Green and blue-green algae, grow-
ing on the surface of submerged concrete, have caused the concrete to be-
come pitted and friable. The effect has been most pronounced when the
percentage of SO 3 in the mortar was 0.6 or higher. It has been assumed
that the gelatin present in the living plants, together with the carbonic ox-
alic, and silicic acids produced by them, are adequate to corrode the ce-
ment (Oborn and Higginson, 1954).
Algae have been reported to cause corrosion in metal tanks and basins
open to sunlight. Oscillatoria growing in abundance in water in an open
steel tank has caused serious pitting of the metal. The pits were bright
and clean, the iron apparently going into solution and not producing any
covering compound such as an oxide or sulfide. The algal growth permit-
ted the pitting to take place by releasing oxygen which combined with the
protecting film of oxide over the steel. When the steel tank was covered to
prevent entrance of light, the algae disappeared and the corrosion stopped
(Myers, 1947).
Indirectly, algae may affect the rate of corrosion in a number of ways.
Increases in organic deposits in the pipe, increases in the dissolved oxygen
in the water through photosynthesis in the raw water supply, and changes
in the pH, CO 2 content and calcium carbonate content of the water can
all be stimulated by algae. Such changes can, in turn, affect the rate of
Algae on Reservoir Walls
Drastic measures often have to be taken to control the attached algae,
especially if the growths are neglected until large quantities threaten to
cause trouble. One city adapted a floor-cleaning machine, fitted with a cy-
lindrical wire brush, for use in scraping the algal growth from the con-
crete floor of a 13 million gallon reservoir. The machine proved to be
much more effective than hand scrapers in removing the attached portions
of the algae from the more than 100,000 square feet of concrete. The de-
tached algae were then flushed from the reservoir floor by streams of wa-
ter from a fire hose (Kuran and Angell, 1953). The use of chemicals to
kill attached algae when they are present in quantity may not solve the
problem because dead algae, as well as living ones can clog filters and
screens, release slimes into the water, and cause tastes and odors.
Iron Bacteria
The development of iron bacteria may manifest itself in several ways.
There may be hard deposits that tend to fill up pipes and reduce their water-
carrying capacity. Slimes and accumulations of filamentous bacteria may

form on the walls of pipes and water holders and scums may be produced
on the water surface. These bacteria may cause turbidity and discolora-
tion of water and be responsible for some of the unpleasant tastes and
odors that are produced either directly or indirectly as the dead bacterial
cells are decomposed by other microorganisms. Water color may be used
as a very rough criterion of abundance because very clear water may
reveal only 1 or 2 organisms per milliliter, whereas the number of orga-
nisms in reddish and turbid waters may exceed 10 million per milliliter
(Luescbow and Mackenthun, 1962). From the examination of 76 munic-
ipal wells in Wisconsin, 53 percent revealed iron bacteria at various con-
centrations. Generally, Galtionella sp. occurred more regularly than Lep-
tothrix sp., and usually in greater numbers. Iron concentrations did not
appear to be related to the occurrence of iron bacteria, but very high con-
centrations of iron bacteria revealed substantially higher concentrations of
iron than the general mean. The occurrence of iron bacteria in the distri-
bution systems was considered independently from the occurrence in
wells. Generally, the occurrence was under 100 organisms per milliliter,
but two outlets revealed concentrations as high as 10 million organisms
per milliliter. These two samples were from a fire hydrant and a relatively
unused tap. Under circumstances of high organism population, the water
contains a dense red sediment, and settling indicated that ¼ to ½ of the
sample volume was iron or iron bacteria.
Harder (1919) reports active development of iron bacteria in pipes
carrying water with 1.3 mg./l iron. Halvorson (1931) found them in
springs having 1 to 10 mg./l. Schorler (1906) records incrustation of 3
centimeters thickness in pipes carrying water with from 0.2 to 0.3 mg./].
iron during 30 years of usage. The amounts of nitrogen required by iron
bacteria are very small compared to the requirements for iron and it is
probable that the nitrogen content of most waters meets their needs.
Chlorination of water appears to be the most satisfactory metnod to
control the development of iron bacteria (Clark, 1963). Duchon and
Miller (1948) found that chlorine and hypochlorite were the most effec-
five chemical agents to control growths of Crenothrix. Blair (1954) stated
that maintaining free residual chlorine throughout the distribution sys-
tem was an effective means to combat infestation. He warned that even
though the kill was effective, tastes and odors were still possible.
A ,üma ls
Published records describing animal infestations in distribution systems
in the United States are meager. The modem water treatment plant with
coagulation, sedimentation, rapid sand filtration, disinfection and subse-
quent storage in covered clear wells and distribution reservoirs has done
much to minimize household infestations. Finished water stored in uncov-
ered distribution reservoirs, however, may mitigate the elaborate steps in
purification at the water treatment plant. Treated water can be degraded

by dirt, lawn fertilizers, leaves, or other organic contaminants entering the
open reservoir. Such materials increase fertility and initiate organism food
chains similar to ones that may develop in raw water. Thus, immature
and adult animals, as well as algal cells, pose potential, if not always ac-
tual, infestation dangers to the consumer. Water supply systems lacking fil-
tration prior to storage in open water reservoirs foster maximal nuisances
to plague the householder.
Animals that have been reported in distribution systems and that are of
special interest to the water works operator, and in certain instances to
the consumer are: nematodes (roundworms), mollusks (snails and
clams), midge larvae (bloodworms), and crustacea (copepods and water
fleas). Other animals causing occasional nuisances in distribution systems
are: protozoa, sponges, rotifers, bryozoans, segmented worms, and aquatic
sow bugs (water lice). Animal infestations have been less frequently
reported in yecent years. Walton (1930) has reviewed early literature on
organisms in water supplies.
Bloodworms, Chironomus sp., have been reported in an uncovered
clear well of Cincinnati’s water treatment plant (Bahlman, 1932). Larvae
moved from the clear well to emerge through faucets of residences on the
distribution system. During the infestation, 10 or 15 worms were carried
to a bathtub and 25 were taken from a finished water faucet at the filtra-
tion plant in 24 hours. Others emerged from faucets or entered toilet
bowls of a suburban hotel. The infestation was associated with a pro-
longed drought, flourishing algal growths, and leaves and black sludge on
the reservoir’s bottom that was 10 to 12 inches deep and contained 50
percent ash and 42 percent volatile and combustible matter. Bahlman
concluded that”. . . a complete covering of the clear-well reservoir is
the only means of maintaining an aesthetic water supply.”
Brown (1933) discussed a bloodworm infestation in a distribution sys-
tem and found the point of development to be a reservoir of the Stockton,
Calif., potable supply. The reservoir had a collapsed roof.
Hechmer (1932) reported bloodworms, Chironomus plumosus, from
finished water tanks, coagulation basins, and the surface of sand filters of
water treatment installations of the Washington Suburban Sanitary Dis-
trict (Washington, D.C.-Maryland). None got through the ifiters. Blood-
worms found in the finished-water tanks developed there from eggs depos-
ited by the adult midge flies. Larvae issuing from faucets caused consumer
complaints. Covering the filtered-finished-water tanks did away with the
bloodworm problem. Attempts to kill worms with high doses of chlorine
(10 p.p.m.) and copper sulfate met with no success.
Hastings (1937) discussed the destruction of the film on a slow sand
filter in Belgium by Chironomus midge larval tubes at the surface of the
filter. When these insects emerged, empty tubes allowed water to pass

through unfiltered. On one occasion, swallows that were feeding on
emerged midge adults were taken as a warning to stop filtration until a
new film could be formed.
Rapid sand filters, which are bound to collect organic debris in the in-
terstices between sand grains, may present an ideal home for breeding
segmented worms. Worm populations in rapid sand filter beds have been
reported to necessitate washing the beds with a strong solution of caustic
soda (Hobbs, 1950).
Silvey (1956) states, “One may actually anticipate the appearance of
these immature midgeflies in any water supply that does not have ample
means of flocculation, sedimentation, and filtration.” He listed the lethal
concentrations of a number of insecticides including copper at 10 p.p.m.,
chlorine at 7 p.p.m. and copper-chlorine-ammonia at 4 p.p.m. The latter,
with a chlorine residual of 3 p.p.m., was lethal in 24 hours.
An unidentified chironomid was eliminated from the Alexandria, Va.,
distribution system following surface spraying of reservoirs with DDT at
0.01 p.p.m. in Triton X and Xylene on August 31, 1945 (Flentje, 1945).
In another paper, Flentje (1 945) reviews control measures for pest infes-
tations in public water supplies. He lists mechanical, biological, and
chemical controls. Mechanical controls include covering the reservoirs,
screening of all vents and openings with small mesh screen to exclude fe-
male midges, and the use of excelsior filters placed over outlet pipe in res-
ervoir to prevent organisms from entering the water main. He recom-
mended a ifiter 6 feet by 3 feet by 3 feet 6 inches and states that it
effectively stopped crustaceans and other organisms from entering the sys-
tem. Filters can be used without exchange for 4 months or longer. Biolog-
ical controls involve keeping vegetation down in the vicinity of reservoir
and controlling algal growths to remove food source. Flentje stated that
ordinary chemical treatments used in water works operations were not
effective in the control of midge larvae. He found that larvae could with-
stand chlorine concentrations as high as 50 p.p.m. with a contact period
of 24 hours. Fifty p.p.m. of copper sulfate was ineffective in control and
13 p.p.m. of chlorine was lethal in 1½ hours; copper sulfate added with
chlorine hastened the killing time. Mineral oil has been used to keep air
from eggs and to prevent pupae from flying away. DDT at 0.01 p.p.m.
gave excellent results but it should be considered only in unusual cases
and should not be used without full approval of proper supervisory public
health authorities (Flentje. 1945).
Microstrainers at a cost of $43,500 per m.g.d. for installation and $2
per m.g.d. for operation were installed in a Connecticut water supply to
control invading Chaoborinae (phantom midge) larvae (Wilbur, 1961).
Water was supplied from reservoirs, which receives copper sulfate for al-
gal control, and breakpoint chlorination was practiced as the water flowed
to the distribution system.

Hydra have been a problem at a Detroit filtration plant where water
was received from Lake St. Clair (Hudgins, 1931). From 1923 to the
early 1930’s, hydras in the water entering the plant were correlated with
the lake’s turnovers occurring for a few days in April and in mid-Novem-
ber. With death and decay they formed a pinkish coating on filter walls
and gave off a fishy odor if ifiters were not washed often. Filter runs were
reduced by as much as ½ at the height of the invasion.
Kelly (1955), using a small microstrainer to concentrate filter effluent,
found that immature, microscopic Naias worms passed through slow-sand
filters in numbers; none was found from rapid-sand filters. Slow-sand fil-
ters passed Naias worms, Cyclops, Daphnia, various diatoms, nematodes,
rotifers, and a few flatworms Stenos iromuin. Rapid-sand filters yielded
only a few diatoms. No way was found to prevent organisms from passing
through the sTow-sand filters. A chlorine dose of 200 p.p.m. failed to de-
stroy nematode eggs in several days, and as much as 20 p.p.m. of chlorine
was required to kill adult nematodes in 2½ hours. To alleviate the prob-
lem, microstrainers and a large chlorination contact tank with provisions
for superchiorination and for dechlorination with sulfur dioxide were in-
stalled following the period of contact.
Motile microscopic nematode larvae at densities of 1 to 20 per gallon,
and on one occasion up to 100 per gallon, were found in the distribution
system of an unnamed city using the Ohio River as a water supply source
(Chang et al., 1959). The infestation was traced to the raw water and
breeding places in sedimentation basins and rapid-sand fitters. The raw
water was chlorinated to a free residual of 1 p.p.m. or more and settled in
basins that provided 2 day’s detention. Ten p.p.m. of alum was frequently
applied prior to sedimentation, then the water was flocculated with 10
p.p.m. ferric sulfate, settled, and filtered, Activated carbon was applied
prior to second flocculation and chlorine was added to maintain a resid-
ual of 0.75 to 1.0 p.p.m. at the filters. Anhydrous ammonia was finally
added to convert the free residual chlorine to a combined residual chlo-
rine before the water entered the distribution system. Rapid sand filters
were ineffective in removing larval worms. Most worms were killed by
free residual chlorine or removed by flocculation and sedimentation, but
when large numbers were carried in the river water, the females survived
chlorination and settled to the bottom of the raw-water line to infest the
supply with young. The authors reported that larvae and adult worms can
injest pathogens such as Salmonella, Shigella and Coxsackia A9 virus and
protect them from the destructive action of the free residual chlorine.
Chang et aT. (1960), following a survey of free-living nematodes and

amebas in municipal supplies, reported that 16 of 22 supplies in as many
States contained nematodes in both raw and finished water. Fourteen of
the 16 used river water as a raw source.
Change (1962) discussed possible control measures on a plant scale
basis, stating:
“At present it appears that the most practical method for preventing
nematode infestation is to prechlorinate the raw water for 6 hours; a
free residual of’ 0.4—0.5 p.p.m. chlorine should result at the end of
this period. Although many of the nematodes are not killed, they are
sufficiently affected so that they can no longer swim; therefore, they
will be settled out in the flocculation process. The pH, in the range
of 6.0—8.2, appears to have no detectable influence on the vermicidal
activity of the free chlorine.”
Water fleas in finished water in distribution systems have been reported
by Hart (1957). He implied that the cyclops eggs, rather than the adults,
pass through filters, which accounted for the appearance of mature forms
in potable supplies.
Indianapolis reported an epidemic of copepods in the distribution sys-
tern during January 1953. and in 1954 (Crabill, 1956). Eggs passed
through the filters and hatched in the finished water. As many as 20 eggs
per liter were counted from the finished water at the immediate effluent
side of the filter. Structural faults that permit insects to deposit eggs di-
rectly in purified water may be responsible for the infestations, and open
reservoirs on distribution systems are an invitation for trouble.
Crabill reported that a copper-chlorine-ammonia treatment applied to
obtain a copper residual of 3 p.p.m. and a combined chlorine residual of
0.5 p.p.m. will kill adult copepods in less than 5 hours. Copper-chlorine-
ammonia having 2-p.p.m. copper residual was equally effective in 12
hours, and 1 p.p.m. Cu was effective in 24 hours. The combined chlorine
residual remains 0.5 p.p.m. in all three copper strengths. Organisms are
killed as they emerge from the eggs. Nothing was found that would pene-
trate the egg sac or the individual egg and prevent it from rupturing and
giving up an active organism.
In 1958 in flushing water mains through coarse muslin bags for 10 min-
utes each on the Great Yarmouth, England , supply, 230 out of 400 points
investigated discharged 6 to S Asellus aquaticus. At one point up to 1,000
organisms were found (Phillips, 1968). To control the organism, the
plant water was dosed with pyrethrum at 0.002 p.p.m. for 21 days. Prior
dechlorination with sulfur dioxide was necessary because chlorine macti-
yates pyrethrins. Every hydrant was flushed 3 times during the treatment
to draw the treated water through. Service reservoirs and water towers
were also treated, with the water wasted following treatment. No speci-

mens have been detected in the mains since 1959. Phillips concludes that
a contact tank chloramine residual of over 1 p.p.m. entering and 0.5
p.p.m. leaving after a minimum contact time of 2 hours was the best con-
trol available with chemicals presently in use. He stated that until new
methods are developed, it is unlikely that organisms can be completely
Phillips used pyrethrins at a maximum dose of 0.01 p.p.m. for short
periods and noted that this concentration was not noticed by consumers.
Oliver (1961) reported that pyrethrins at 0.012 p.p.m. was effective in
eradicating Ase llus that were often found to block a small filter receiving
raw water through a main.
In September 1964, Asellus aquaticus, originating from the river Elbe.
colonized the water-distribution system at Magdeburg, East Germany, and
reached a count of 2,490 animals per m of water (Klapper, 1966). The
organisms were completely destroyed by treating the water leaving the
water works, for a period of 5 days, with an alcoholic solution containing
1 percent pyrethrin extract (25 percent pyrethrin) and 2.5 percent piper-
onyl butoxide (as a synergist), a concentration of 0.0025 mg of pyreth-
tin per litre of water. This led to an unexpected high increase in the bac-
terial count throughout the distribution system, and the pyrethrin
treatment was therefore followed by treatment for 7 days with 2 to 3 mg.
of chlorine per litre and for a further 14 days with I mg. of chlorine per
litre. To prevent a fresh outbreak of Asellus in May 1965, when thick
colonies formed on the filters at the water works, the fi]ters were treated
with alcoholic pyrethrin extract; this caused no problems since the pyreth-
rin is removed by the subsequent chemical coagulation process and no
poison reaches the treated water.
Morgan (1930) stated that water pipes are often lined with rough coat-
ings of sponges a quarter of an inch or more thick and that the incrusta-
tion hindered the flow of water through the pipes or sometimes stopped it.
Sterki (1911) records an infestation of the Erie, Pa.. water system
when the raw source was Lake Erie. The intake at the time was 4 to 5
miles out in the lake. He noted that “wagon-loads” of snails were taken
from the crib structure when it was cleaned and that snails often plugged
faucets. Two genera of snails that were collected with Bvthinia but not re-
ported to cause nuisances were Physa and Helisorna. Published data relat-
ing to difficulties caused by snails and clams in drinking water supplies
are meager. Ingram (1956) reviewed 30 references that relate snails to
drinking water supplies; most of these report infestations but do not dis-
cuss control measures to alleviate nuisance. Records deal principally with
the faucet snail, Bythinia tentaculata (Linnaeus).

Clam nuisances have not yet been reported in distribution systems in
the United States; one species, Corbicula flurninea , introduced from Asia
and bordering Pacific Islands, has been recorded as causing trouble in
raw-drinking water supplies and in the canal transportation system of the
LaVerne water softening plant of the Metropolitan Water District of
Southern California (Ingram, 1959). This clam has a life cycle that, in
prognostication, should eventually cause it to be listed as a nuisance in
treated supplies. It is established as a pest in pipes of irrigation systems in
California. Since the time of the first published record of its distribution
in the United States as an inhabitant of certain streams in California and
Washington, it has spread to waterways in Arizona, Oregon, Idaho, Ten-
nessee, and Ohio.
In 1960, the American Water Works Association answered questions
from water works operators on biologic infestations. In response to a
question on how to control Cyclops infestation, the committee answered
that an identical problem was corrected by flushing water mains and fol-
lowing with an application of cuprich loramine over a 3-week period (Cra-
bill et al., 1 960). This treatment killed Cyclops emerging from the eggs,
which had passed the filters and hatched in the system. On controlling
growths of blue-green algae inside water mains and the actinomycetes that
may grow on the blue-green algal remains, chlorine dioxide at 2.5 p.p.m.
was recommended. Treatment should be done in cooperation with agen-
cies familiar with the process since low residuals are detrimental to fish
and laundry processes. The committee stated, in response to another
question, that caddisfly larvae frequently pass from the raw water into the
intake pipe and build cases of sand grains, plant remains, debris, etc.
Over a period of time these cases may pile towards the center of the pipe
and constrict the flow. The committee stated that those organisms may be
controlled by adding 5 to 8 p.p.m. chlorine for 10 minutes per day until
organisms are killed.
Geist Reservoir
A limnological study was made of 1.800-acre Geist Reservoir, serving
Indianapolis, Ind., during 1963 and l964.* The reservoir is owned by the
Indianapolis Water Co. and is used principally as a water storage im-
poundment, although limited recreational use was permitted. Fishing was
the principal form of recreational use, and 515,000 man-hours per year
were spent in fishing activities on the reservoir. Water skiing, swimming,
and use of large horsepower motor boats were prohibited. Objectives of
* Indiana Water Quality-Recreation Project, Geist Resen’oir, Indianapolis, md.
Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Federal Water Pollution Control
Administration, May 1966.

the study were to evaluate possible deterioration in water quality that re-
sult from use of a watershed or reservoir for recreational purposes, and to
determine the effects of water pollution sources within the drainage basin
on water quality.
Geist Reservoir is 7.5 miles long; it has a shoreline of 35 miles. and
stores 6.9 billion gallons of water. It has a maximum depth of 30 feet and
is divided into three unequal basins by two causewa s. The watershed
draining to the impoundment is 215 square miles; the surrounding land is
used primarily for farming and is gently rolling to fiat Wisconsin gla-
cial-drift. During the spring runoff period (March through May). the av-
erage turbidity was 155 units for the influent and upper causeway stations
(fig. 66). A large portion of the particulate matter settled out in the res-
ervoir: the mean turbidity was 30 units at the dam station. During the
spring period, maximum turbidity readings were 950 units at the inlet and
upper causewa\ stations and ‘5 units at the dam station. The decrease in
turbidity with both time and distance from the influent is shown in Figure
The reservoir received a flushing during March and April when it re-
cci cd 90 percent of its influent water. During the low flow period. Au-
gust through January. the influent was less than 25 million gallons per
month. The outflow of water from Geist Reservoir was greatest during the
two spring months. March and April. After the reservoir had reached its
f 700
r eooflI
I u 1i
HI -.
- - - - - - - - - - k 4$ Stalløn
- --. --
, - - - - - - - l*c c Caisway S a? on

- ...- - - - - - - - ‘ - ..Lo Cassr y S as .on
- - - - — Ssasonat
-‘ MoxW r Seasonal m
Dons S? on
Figure 66. Seasonal turbidity unit values, Geist Reservoir, 1963—64.

storage leveL the drawoff was subject to the demands of the water com-
pany. Minimum reservoir volumes of 4 500 million gallons were observed
from November through February.
Vertical water temperatures and dissolved oxygen concentrations were
determined at selected points throughout the reservoir during the spring
and summer of 1964. Between the dam and the lower causeway stations,
temporary thermal stratification was exhibited from June through August
during periods of calm weather (fig. 67). The euphotic zone (that portion
of the reservoir in which there is sufficient light for photosynthesis) was
approximately 10 feet and contained up to 18 mg./l of dissolved oxygen
(D.O.). The layer of water varying from to 10 feet above the bottom
contained less than 0.5 fig. l D.O. during June and July, 1964. During
the routine sampling in 1963 and 1964. DO. concentrations and water
temperatures were recorded at a five-foot level at four reservoir stations.
These data show that the supersaturated dissolved oxygen concentration
in the upper-water layer was the result of photosynthesis and the low dis-
solved oxygen concentrations in the bottom water layer resulted from the
respiration of settled organisms and the decomposition of wastes entering
the reservoir.
Inorganic nitrogen (NH-N, NO-N and N0 2 -N) and soluble phospho-
rus were alwa\ s present in large quantities even during the maximum al-
gal growing season in June. By calculation. 793,000 pounds per year of
inorganic nitrogen entered Geist Reservoir and 443,000 pounds flowed
out: the difference between these two values indicated 44 percent reten-
17 19 Temp 23 25 27 29 31 33
Percent U it Rema n ng
20 40 60 100 120 140 I6 180 200
P °—° Percent Light
i j / A— — Dissolved Oxygen (mg/I)
a o-—--c Temp°C
June 29, 964
Time 11:50
4500ft. N.E.of Dam
I lL l ii I I I I I I I I L..
I 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 II 12 13 14 5 16 17 8 19 20
Dissolved Oxygen (mg/I)
Figure 67. Vertical temperature, dissolved oxygen, and percent light,
Geist Reservoir, md.

tion. Geist Reservoir contained an average inorganic nitrogen concentra-
tion of 1.2 mg./l, based on the mean monthly quantity of inorganic nitro-
gen divided by the mean reservoir volume. The season of major runoff
(March and April) accounted for 633,400 pounds of inorganic nitrogen
entering, and 375,000 pounds or 59 percent of the total annual inorganic
nitrogen inflow leaving Geist Reservoir.
The total amount of inorganic nitrogen present in Geist Reservoir dur-
ing March was 128,000 pounds. This quantity steadily decreased through
July. From August through December Geist Reservoir contained, at all
times, at least 10,000 pounds of inorganic nitrogen that was available for
algal production. By calculation, the drainage area was supplying 3,690
pounds of inorganic nitrogen per square mile of drainage per year. This
loading is equivalent to 440 pounds per surface acre in the reservoir per
On an annual basis, 51,000 pounds of total phosphorus, of which
38,000 was soluble, entered Geist Reservoir. The outflow was 38,000
pounds of which 23,600 was soluble. This provides a 25-percent retention
of total phosphorus and a 38-percent retention of soluble phosphorus.
The average annual concentration of soluble phosphorus (P) in Geist
Reservoir was 0.06 mg./l. By calculation, 61 percent of the annual
soluble phosphorous entered Geist Reservoir during March and April.
and during that same period 90 percent of the soluble phosphorus was
discharged. During the period of maximum algal production (June) the
inorganic nitrogen concentration was 0.39 mg./ 1. and the soluble phos-
phorus concentration was 0.39 mg./l and the soluble phosphorus con-
centration was 0.014 mg./l, which indicated that these nutrients were
not completely utilized.
By calculating the reservoir volume and the concentration of soluble
phosphorus, the pounds available for algal production can be estimated.
During the month of April, an average quantity of 6,800 pounds of soluble
phosphorus was available. This quantity was reduced to 2,000 pounds
during May and June. The minimal level of soluble phosphorus occurred
during July of both 1963 and 1964 when 900 pounds of soluble phos-
phorus was available for algal production in the reservoir. During August
to December Geist Reservoir contained approximately 2,000 pounds of
soluble phosphorus. During 1963 and 1964, the percent soluble phospho-
rus of the total phosphorus ranged from a minimum of 25 percent to a
maximum of 71 percent, and averaged 45 percent. The drainage area
supplied an average of 240 pounds of total phosphorus per square mile.
(See table 3 for comparative data.)
During the spring, Geist Reservoir supported 458-pounds per acre (wet
weight) of phytoplankton; and in summer, 960-pounds per acre. The faIl
and winter standing crops were (on the average) very similar to the
spring phytoplankton standing crop, namely, 484 and 213-pounds per
acre respectively. Volumetrically, the lower causeway station was richest

in phytoplankton with the exception of the fall period (fig. 68). Phy-
toplankton volume was least at the inlet station and greatest in the shal-
lower pools formed by the two causeways. In these areas turbidities are
reduced and nutrients are readily available.
In figures 66 and 68, good use was made of the three-dimensional
method of data expression. Stations, as well as displayed data, were few
in number and the resultant displays can be interpreted readily by the
The benthic population in the middle basin reached a maximum of
1,180 organisms per square foot. Sludgeworms predominated in the ben-
thos with 950 per square foot. The benthic population in the lower basin
contained a maximum of 2,600 organisms per square foot and, like that
in the middle basin, was predominantly sludgeworms. Sludgeworms and
phantom midge populations were significantly higher in the lower basin
than in the upper basin. Higher phantom midge populations in the lower
basin were attributed to the deeper water, which reached a maximum
depth of 30 feet.
The composition and magnitude of the benthic population in Giest Res-
ervoir was similar to those usually associated with a moderately produc-
five water body. Physical factors such as temperature, fluctuating water
levels, depth, and bottom types influenced the bottom organism popula-
lion to such an extent that any moderate increase in recreation or land de-
velopment would be insignificant in effecting changes.
From the study of this water supply reservoir, it was concluded that:
(1) the fertile drainage area supplied sufficient nutrients and growth
stimulants to Geist Reservoir for aquatic vegetation develop-
ment, and that the effects from any nutrient increases resulting
from currently proposed recreational use or adjacent land de-
velopment would be undetectable,
(2) the nutrients and growth stimulants supplied from the drainage
area were contributed by agricultural runoff, municipal-indus-
trial discharges, and forest and noncrop land runoff. A reduc-
tion in agricultural, municipal, and industrial wastes could im-
prove water quality,
(3) gross mineral analyses indicated an acceptable water quality for
a public supply, and
(4) analyses of data from chemical and biological determinations
conducted on Geist Reservoir during 1963 and 1964 indicated
that the small amount of recreation present on Geist Reservoir
had a minimal, insignificant effect on the present water quality.

Dam Station
Causeway Station
Figure 68. Concentration of phytoplankton (p.p.m.), Geist Reservoir, 1963—64.

J\4 UCH of sewage treatment is a biological process. Plants in waste
treatment are restricted mostly to bacteria and the higher fungi.
When the operation proceeds in light, green filamentous algae, green non-
filamentous algae, or flagellated organisms thrive. Blue-green algae may
also he present, although generally not in large numbers. Perhaps the
least helpful of the common groups of algae in sewage treament are the
diatoms. Many bacteria and fungi will grow in light, but their preferred
habitat is a dark one and they. therefore, work in the depths of filters,
lmhoff tanks. digesters. or the interior of sand filters. Sunlight is neces-
sary for the growth of algae. and most algal forms require about 6 to 7
percent of full sunlight to carry on active growth.
Most of the lower plants and animals found in sewage treatment are
cosmopolitan in occurrence. They are well known and seem to be sub-
stantially alike in similar treatment plants. Some organisms, however tend
to occur very abundantly in certain types of wastes so much so that
blooms of them can be called indicative for the waste and for the condi-
tion it causes. The dominance of a particular species is in response of
the organism to some particular component or condition of the waste.
Only a few chlorophyll-containing types can utilize the dissolved organic
substances in sewage. raw or partly digested. and these then become of
value as indicators of particular conditions. The great majority of algae
prefer to thrive in waters low in organic matter, and utilize phosphorus,
carbon dioxide, nitrates, oxygen, and other inorganic substances.
Bacteria and other colorless plants initiate the breakdown of organic
substances, and while particular organic substances are attacked by par-
ticular species, generally there is a large number of bacterial species in
any waste disposal unit. At the present time there is far too little knowl-
edge of either the work done by individual species or on the use of partic-
ular types for purification of particular wastes.
Visible active inhabitants of anaerobic habitats, Imhoff tanks and diges-

ters, are generally bacteria, together with about 20 species of protozoa
divided equally among flagellates, ciliates, and amoeba. None of these
generally are present in large numbers, and often the protozoa are ex-
tremely scarce. It has been stated that it is probable that these organisms
afford a fair criteria to the proper working conditions in an Imhoff tank.
When the tanks foam or seem to digest poorly, the number of protozoa is
high, and when there is but little solid matter in the liquid, the number of
protozoa tends to be small.
Conditions in filters and aeration chambers are less severe, and the ani-
mal populations are usually larger. Here it seems well proven that animals
exert a decided influence by consuming bacteria to the extent that the
bacterial population curve never levels off. The bacteria are always grow-
ing and reproducing, and this is their most effective stage in purification.
Also certain insect larvae burrow in the film of filters, thereby keeping it
loose and porous and capable of unloading.
A complete list of the animals in trickling filters would comprise some
hundreds of species that would include psychoda flies, several genera of
worms, roaches, snails, other insect larvae, and many species of protozoa.
Activated sludge contains much less diversity of fauna, but does fre-
quently contain branching fungi and filamentous bacteria.
Protozoan fauna are abundant and are usually dominated by solitary
or colonial Vorticellidae. Other ciliates may occur in large numbers.
There are a few flagellated species and amoeboid protozoa. Rotifers,
nematodes, and annelid worms may become very important.
Agersborg and Hatfield (1929) described the biology of sewage treat-
ment and, in particular, their studies on the Decatur, Ill. , plant. They
listed organisms found in Imhoff tanks, trickling filters, and aeration
tanks. Arden’s (1928) summary of the protozoan characteristics of acti-
vated sludge was cited. He found that sludge in “bad condition” con-
tained a preponderance of flagellates. many amoeba and relatively few
ciliates. Sludge in unsatisfactory condition contained flagellates and
amobea and some ciliates. Sludge in satisfactory condition supported few
flagellates and amoeba and contained a preponderance of ciliates. Sludge
in good condition supported very few flagellates; amoeba were rare, and
there was a proponderance of ciliates. Lackey (1949) reviewed the
biology of sewage treatment and considered both the anaerobic and
aerobic systems. Calaway and Lackey (1962) described in taxonomic
detail the flagellates associated with waste treatment.
Trickling Filters
The biotic populations of the trickling filter are relatively uniform in
composition. Bacteria, fungi, protozoans, algae, nematodes, rotifers,
snails, sludgeworms, and larvae of certain insects may vary from filter
to filter at the species level, but the biota remains relatively constant.
Identification of the members of this population has been of little con-

cern to the sanitary engineer as long as the population became established
and functional relatively quickly after placing a filter in operation. A good
operating condition is one in which little clogging occurs in the spaces
between stones and one which carries on its function of removing solid,
colloidal, or dissolved materials from the sewage, thus its biochemical
oxygen demand (BOD) is reduccd.
In 1939, Reynoldson made a very thorough study of segmented worms
in bacteria beds in England. The most important species was considered
to be Lumbricillus lineatus while Lumbricus rubellus was also abundant.
Usually adults were found at lower levels while the young were near the
surface. Their feeding habitats were closely associated with the growth of
Phormidium sp. on the surface film. Drying conditions in summer and
cold temperatures in winter tended to send these animals deeper into the
filter beds. The cycle of their appearance indicated that they were respon-
sible for sloughing. As the algae returned after 3—4 weeks the worms
moved upward to feed upon this growth. The more rapid regeneration of
the algae in the summer was also attributed to the effects of the worms.
The value of the worms in developing sloughing conditions and in con-
trolling the film was demonstrated experimentally. In the filters under
study the worms were considered as important as the insect larvae in con-
trolling accumulative film growth.
Wilson (1943, 1949) reported that scouring organisms such as oligo-
chaete worms and insect larvae were important in preventing excessive
development of film and increasing plant efficiency in Wisconsin and
Minnesota. The worms listed included: Aetosoma heinprichi, Pristina sp.,
and Dero sp. He stated that while worms such as .Dero were few in num-
ber they exerted a potent influence on the reduction and stabilization of
sewage solids and assisted in clearing voids among rocks for the improve-
ment of ventilation.
lmhoff and Fair (1956) indicated that among the worms present in
trickling filters were the “aquatic earthworm” Limnodrilus sp., and the
reddish sludge worm Tubifex sp.
Usinger and Kellen (1955) studied the role of insect in several types of
sewage disposal beds in California. In an experimental biofiltration plant
at San Rafael Meadows insect larvae were found. The commonest species
was a member of the Diptera, Psyciwda alternata.
In certain areas, populations of snails can develop in trickling filters.
Ingram et al. (1958) have reported that at least five species of snails have
been found in the United States on trickling filters. Physa anatina was
found at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, Physa halei at Fort Worth, Texas,
P. cubensis at Gainsville, Flordia, and P. integra at Dayton and Hillsboro ,
Ohio. In addition, Lymnaea hurnilis ,nodicel la was found once in low
numbers at Urbana-Champaign. Serious damage to equipment was re-
ported as a result of the activities of P. integra at Dayton, and of P.
cubensis at Gainsville.

Cooke (1959) published a composite list of more than 200 known
organisms found in trickling filters.
Twelve tubular perspex experimental filters, each 91 cm . high and 15
cm. in diameter, were used by Williams and Taylor (1968) to determine
the effect of Psychoda aiternata (Say) and Lumbricillus rivalis (Levin-
sen) on the efficiency of sewage treatment in percolating filters. The vol-
ume of each filter was 16.7 liters and all were filled with sterilized 1.3 to
1.9 cm. clinker. Ventilation was provided by two ports, covered with fine
gauze, one at the top and one at the base of each filter. A constant tem-
perature of 15° C. was maintained during the experiments.
Artificial sewage, with BOD and organic carbon values of about 350
mg./l and 180 mg./l respectively, was introduced with an initial loading
equivalent to 80 gal./yd. 3 per day and 0.16 lb. BOD/yd. 3 per day, and
was increased to 100 gal./yd. 3 per day and 0.35 lb BOD/yd. 3 per day.
Three species of fungi and 6 species of protozoa were introduced at the
start of the experiment. Each of 4 groups of triplicate filters received fly
larvae at a density of 17 larvae/I, worms at a density of 24 worms/I, a
mixture of both fly larvae and worms, and no macrofauna respectively.
The film in the control group grew rapidly, blocked the filter, caused
ponding and produced anaerobic conditions. The efficiency of treatment.
measured in terms of BOD and organic carbon removal, decreased from
90 percent to 40 percent. The two groups containing fly populations had
treatment efficiencies greater than 90 percent within 2 months with the
larvae successfully controlling the film accumulations. The filter group
containing worms achieved similar high treatment efficiencies, but not un-
til 5 months after inoculation. The worm populations increased more
slowly because of longer developmental periods.
Many wastewater treatment plants are troubled seriously by Psychoda
flies. When circumstances are favorable, large numbers of these, especially
of the species P. alternata Say (“the trickling filter fly”) may leave the fil-
ter beds.
The Psychodidae are not restricted to sewage filter beds. These flies fre-
quent decaying organic material, in which they lay their eggs. The fact
that they are able to become a real pest at many treatment plants results
from the favorable environment commonly prevailing in a filter bed. The
relative humidity is high, sufficient oxygen is present, food for the larvae
is abundant, and the pupae can find many places where they can nestle
and where the imagoes can hatch.
The flies do not sting or suck blood, but they are a real annoyance be-
cause they settle on the eyes, ears, nose, and clothes, and, because of their
minute size they easily enter surrounding houses. They are not known to
transmit disease, but there are indications which make them suspect.
Scott (1961) presented an excellent concise bibliographic review of fil-
ter fly control. Although drying, flooding, and treatment of the slime layer
with insecticide give good control, they are all unpopular with the sewage

plant operator. The efficiency of the biofilter is dependent upon the act-
ivity of its slime layer. Yet, drying destroys it, flooding disrupts it, and
both involve cessation of operation for considerable time. While insecti-
cides may be applied without stopping the filter, they throw the slimelayer
out of balance, and may poison aquatic life downstream from the sewage
outfall. The oil present in solutions and emulsions does serious damage to
the slime layer, so suspensions are used in treating the filter bed. However,
even suspensions kill off large numbers of key organisms (including filter
fly larvae which are in themselves important), and therefore lower the ef-
ficiency of the filter.
Scott stated that the following procedures seem best for filter fly con-
trol: (1) keep weeds and grass mowed short throughout the sewage plant
area; (2) spray walls and other structural elements of the filters with
2.5-percent DDT or 2.5-percent malathion suspension (at 1 gallon per
1,000 square feet using a flat spray nozzle to give a residual deposit), ex-
tending the treatment out from the edge of the filter for 20 feet, but not
spraying the slime layer; (3) if necessary, spray the edges and walls of
sludge drying beds with 2.5-percent DDT suspension, then take steps to
improve quality of product coming from digestors; and (4) repeat treat-
ment as needed (typically about every 2 months). Cutting of vegetation
reduces favored adult-resting sites while the residual insecticide harvests
adult flies rapidly so that large populations cannot buildup.
Resistance of filter flies to DDT and chlordane has been reported. If
DDT resistance does appear, use 2.5-percent malathion.
Although flies are not eliminated, they persist in such few numbers that
they are no longer pests. Larvae will be pcrsent on the filter beds, and oc-
casional small “blooms” of adults may occur.
Den Otter (1966) suggested that Psychoda pests could be prevented
when fly larvae were hampered in their efforts to rcach the surface of fil-
ter beds by use of a top layer of stones that can be rinsed easily and con-
tinuously. A 15-cm. thick top layer of pebbles, each about 5 cm. in diam-
eter, was recommended. Continuous and complete sprinkling was
obtained by recirculation and by distribution of the wastewater in jets or
in sheets. Clogging was not found to be a problem.
Activated Sludge
McKinney and Gram (1956) stressed that the type of protozoan pres-
ent in activated sludge was of major concern to the treatment plant opera-
tor. They stated that there is a definite succession of protozoa as activated
sludge is formed and becomes more efficient. Knowledge of the various
protozoa and their significance can be used as a valuable guide to better
activated sludge operation. Observations of the protozoa can be made
quickly with a microscope of only 100 power. These observations reflect
the immediate condition of the sludge. Industrial waste systems fed unu-
sual or toxic organic compounds require careful control to insure continu-

ous operation at maximum efficiency. Since the protozoa are more sensi-
tive to toxic compounds than bacteria, observations on the change in
protozoa from normal levels give an immediate indication of trouble be-
fore it has had time to affect the bacteria.
Each operator must determine the protozoa characteristics of his own
system and relate their activities to efficiency. A general guide as to rela-
tive predomination of protozoa and efficiency in an activated sludge sys-
tem, as presented by McKinney and Gram follows:
1. Sarcodina (amoeba) predominate very rarely and only in sys-
tems just starting or just recovering from complete toxicity.
2. The holophytic, soluble food eating, Mastigophora (flagellates)
predominate at low efficiency when the organic concentration is
high. In some industrial wastes systems where the organic load is
high, the effciency may be mathematically high but the indication
is that the effluent still contains a high concentration of organic
3. The holozoic, solid food eating, Mastigop/zora (flagellates) arise
as the holophytic flagellates decrease. They indicate an only
slightly more efficient system and efforts to distinguish between the
two types of flagellates is not warranted by the results.
4. The free-swimming ciliates are found whcn there are large num-
bers of free-swimming bacteria. The efficency of the system when
the numbers are very high is approximately 50 percent. They can
indicate a failry efficient system or a poor one. The key is in the
other types present. Flagellates and free-swimming ciliates are at
the low side of the efficiency scale while the presence of stalked
dilates and higher animal forms such as rotifers indicates the high
side of the scale.
5. The precense of stalked ciliates indicates an activated sludge with
a low BOD effluent. The stalked ciliates arise as a result of the
number of available bacteria being reduced below the demands of
the free-swimming ciliates. Having lower energy requirements
than the free-swimming ciliates, the stalked ciliates survive. A
very stable activated sludge system will have very few stalked cil-
iates and, usually, no other protozoan forms. Actually, the ciliates
are measuring the bacterial activity; but since the bacterial activity
reflects the biochemical condition of the system, the ciliates re-
flect the efficiency with considerable accuracy.
Stabilization Ponds
In 1957 in the United States, there were 631 waste stabilization ponds
in use in 27 States serving 2,362,842 persons, of which 430 ponds, serv-
ing a population of 759,941, were used as the sole means of waste treat-
ment (Thomas and Jenkins, 1958). The greatest percentage increase of
any treatment category during the period 1945-57 was in oxidation

ponds; the number of plants increased from 45 to 631, and the popula-
tion served increased from 0.2 to 2.4 million.
The use of this type of treatment continues to grow. Porges and Mack-
enthun (1963) reported that a total of 1,304 stabilization ponds in 39
States serving a population of 2,138,085 were used as the sole method of
sewage treatment or in combination with primary treatment. It was noted
that ponds were used by the larger communities to serve small popula-
tions probably until the extension of municipal sewerage to include the
smaller communities. Stabilization ponds were used by 343 communities
for tertiary treatment serving a population of 2,146,951 people in 27
States. Thus, a total of I ,647 ponds in 41 States were used to treat sew-
age from a population of 4 .285,036 (fig. 69). Ponds are especially adapt-
able to the smaller communities since the majority of the ponds were used
by those communities having populations less than 25,000. The growth of
pond use is phenomenal and this treatment will probably continue.
Data indicate that 847 ponds were used by 31 industrial groups in the
United States in 1962 (fig, 70). The canning industry used the greatest
number of ponds with 28 percent of the reported installations. Second
was meat and poultry with 2 1 percent. The chemical industry was next
with 7 percent.
Treatment efficiencies varied with indications that well-designed and
well-operated ponds produced effluents equal to or better than those ex-
pected from effective, conventional, secondary treatment plants.
Data indicate meat and poultry wastes were treated in the majority of
cases by aerobic ponds. Most dairy wastes were reportedly treated by the
aerobic process at relatively low loadings; petroleum wastes were also re-
ported to be treated primarily by aerobic ponds generally at low loadings;
emphasis was on phenol removal, and treatment was effective in this re-
spect. Aerobic treatment was employed by sizable numbers of the follow-
ing industries: chemical, paper. wine, textile, sugar, rendering, hog
feeding. laundry, and potato processing.
Anaerobic ponds as compared to aerobic ponds were used to a greater
extent by the canning. paper. textile, sugar, and leather industries. Also
employing significant numbers of anaerobic ponds were the meat and
poultry, chemical, wine, rendering, and potato-processing industries.
Greater loadings were imposed upon anaerobic ponds with some loss in
efficiency and increase in odors.
Analysis of reported data indicated that the median loading for aerobic
ponds treating meat and poultry wastes was 72 pounds BOD per acre per
day. Dairy wastes were more difficult to treat from an odor standpoint;
the median loading was 22 pounds BOD per acre per day. Median value
for petroleum wastes was 28 pounds per acre per day, although the goal
for many petroleum waste treatment ponds was phenol removal rather
than BOD; median phenol removal was 97 percent. Median loadings for

TOTAL 1,647
1 .

Figure 69. Municipal stabilization ponds in the United States—1962.

Figure 70. Reported stabilization ponds used by industry in the United States—1962.
1 KA i.
TOTAL - 84 - i ’

other wastes were: canning, 104; paper, 105; chemicals, 157; and textiles,
165. The last three were based on limited data and may not be reliable.
Loadings for anaerobic treatment were generally much greater; there
was indication that sewage loadings exceeding 250 pounds BOD per acre
per day would bring about anaerobic conditions. The review of industrial
practices indicates that loadings generally exceeded 160 pounds per acre
per day for anaerobic operations. Reported median anaerobic loadings
were: canning, 392 pounds BOD per acre per day; meat and poultry,
I .260; paper, 347; textile, 1,433; and sugar, 240.
The fungi and yeasts were examined during a 1-year study of the Leba-
non, Ohio. stabilization ponds (Cooke, 1962; Cooke and Matsuura,
1963). More than 100 species of filamentous fungi, including 9 species of
Fusariuin and nearly 50 species of yeasts, were isolated from the ponds.
It appeared that several species of fungi potentially pathogenic to plants
might occur. Six species of yeasts isolated from the ponds appeared indic-
ative of organic enrichment of water and soil. Cooke stated that effluents
from a pond system can readily carry spores from place to place. In the
drier areas, effluents from such ponds may be developed as irrigation sup-
plements; thus, heavier than normal spore load is applied to the soil, the
effects of which can only be anticipated.
Photosynthesis has been termed the most important single factor in de-
termining the course and effectiveness of stabilization pond treatment. Al-
gae are an integral part of photosynthesis. A striking similarity exists
among algal speciation in stabilization ponds. Principal algae (fig. 71)
cited as inhbitants of stabilization ponds, include Chiorella, Scenedesmus,
Chiatnydonionas and Euglena. Allen (1955) found that algae can be
used as a means of following pond operation in California since Chiorella
and Scenedesnius predominate when sewage is undergoing active decom-
position, and C/?lore lla is succeeded by Scenedesmus and Chiarnydornonas
when oxidation is well advanced. Some of the highest algal densities in
California were observed during December and January. The coming of
heavy rains with dilution and rise of water levels created a sharp drop in
the algal population. Parker (1962) found high algal populations in uni-
cellular aerobic ponds, but much more variety and a lower population
level in multicell ponds. Through the use of multice ll ponds it was possible
to obtain relatively clear effluents free from objectionable algal turbidity.
Maximum total counts of phytoplankton per milliliter have been re-
corded at 2.800.000 (Neel et al.. 1961), 4,700,000 (Mackenthun and
McNabb. 1959). and 1.300.000 (Merz et al.. 1957). Algal mass, in per volume, has averaged 2,000 to 7,000 with a maximum of
34,700 in Missouri (Ned et al.. 1961) and 50 to 250 in Wisconsin
(Mackenthun and McNabb. 1959). As related by Fitzgerald and Rohlich
(1958), Meffert (1955) reported algal yields of 11 to 16 tons per acre
per year during warm weather and 7 tons per acre per year during cool,
cloudy weather; average yields of 30 to 35 tons of dry algae per acre per

30 p
•0 C
/ 2O
6 I
Figure 71. Algae commonly found in sewage waste stabilization ponds. A,
Chiorella ellipsoidea; B Chlorella vulgaris; C, Cyclotella operculata; D, Ankis-
trodesmus spp.; E, Golenkinia radiata; F, Nitzschia palea; G, Crucigenia rec-
tanularis; H, Chodatella guaclriseta; I, Selanastrum minutum; J, Pandorina
morum; K, Coelastrum microporum; L, Euglena spp.; M, Chlorogonium euch-
Iorum; N, Cryptomonas erosa; 0, Micractinium pusillum; P, Chlamydomonas
sp Q, Scenedesmus spp.; R, Trachelomonas sp.; S, Eudorina eIegans.
year were obtained from ponds at Richmond, Calif., with rate yields of 60
to 75 tons per acre per year in July and August (Gotaas and Oswald.
1955). Algal yields of 600 to 1,600 pounds per million gallons of sewage
have also been reported (Gotaas et al.. 1954).
Neel et al. (1961) noted that blue-green algal mats consisting princi-
pallv of Oscillatciria and Phormidium developed on detached benthic al-
gae, and created pigpen odors detectable for 20 to 50 feet. Wind would
not break up the mats. Loadings in excess of 60 pounds of BOD per acre
per day maintained dense plankton populations that probably deprive bot-
tom growths of needed light. Odor nuisances arising from blue-green algal
scums have occurred in Alabama, Mississippi, and other southern States.
Additional effort needs to be expended to find a solution to this problem.
Bottom organisms in a northern Wisconsin stabilization pond (Mack-
enthun and McNabb, 1959) were confined principally to three species of
midges whose combined population ranged from 36 per square foot in the
early spring to 956 per square foot in late fall. There was a 94-percent
population reduction caused by anaerobic benthic conditions during the
first winter of operation. This benthic population undoubtedly had an im-
pact on the nutrient cycle. Larvae that assimilate nutrients indirectly

through feeding on phytop lankton, and subsequently pupate and develop
into adults, may completely remove their share of nutrients from the
pond. Those killed by winter anaerobic conditions delay the entrance of
their share of nutrients into the superimposed water until late winter or
early spring. Final effluent polishing might be accomplished by additional
ponds in series, the last one containing fish that could be harvested at pe-
riodic intervals.
Mosquitoes in stabilization ponds have usually been associated with
growths of aquatic vegetation (Beadle and Harinston, 1958; Myk lebust
and Harmston, 1962; Beadle and Rowe, 1960; Mallack et al., 1962).
Shallow ponds with abundant vegetation produce mosquito problems;
ponds free from vegetation have presented no problem. Suggestions for
minimizing mosquito problems include specifications on bank slope,
depth. the clearing of the pond bottom prior to filling, a system of water
level control to permit the use of soil sterilants to control marginal vegeta-
tion, and the use of larvicides such as diesel oil, DDT, and malathion to
control significant mosquito production in the event of failure of other
remedial measures. The use of specific herbicides or larvicides is depend-
ent on local pond conditions and the ultimate fate of effluent water.
Kimcrlc and Enns (1968) reported that 60 species of aquatic insects
were found in 1 8 central Missouri stabilization ponds. Three species of
midges predominated. Culex pipiens and C. tarsalis bred in pond outlets
where over lfow water was allowed to drain across a flat area before
reaching a drainage ditch.
In the Wisconsin stabilization pond studies, phytoplankton counts were
recorded as the number of organisms per ml., as well as the volume of
cell mass in p.p.m. (fig. 72). The dissimilar trends between the two ap-
proaches of arriving at the plankton standing crop, and the similarity of
phytoplankton volumetric data between the two stabilization ponds illus-
trate the necessity of “going the extra mile” to obtain volumetric data.
Both stabilization ponds were receiving biochemical oxygen demand
(BOD) loadings of 20 to 23 pounds per acre per day.
Local climatological conditions influence to a great extent the function-
ing of a stabilization pond. Under the severe winters of northern Wiscon-
sin, where ice and snow cover the pond’s surface, unsatisfactory waste
stabilization occurred at loadings of 20 pounds and above of BOD (fig.
73). Satisfactory pond operation occurred during summer and fall.
The operation of a stabilization pond requires frequent inspection and
periodic maintenance to be reasonably free from odors. Under certain op-
erational and climatic conditions blue-green algae may appear as a sub-
stantial floating mass within a period of 2 or 3 days that can be wind con-
gregated along the leeward shore. Under a hot sun, the surface of the
algal mass will bake, decompose, and emit pungent odors. Specific causes
of algal mat formation cannot be stated specifically, and operational and
climatic factors may indeed interact to create the problem.

0 tscsIIu soui •I s. Q POfldOIiAS
Scøsdssiuius spp. Coilsstriaut .Icr.p u*
Chlorslls •pp. IevsotiIl4u* pweIlI .m i •i.utu*
liii UDrz Bi IE
M J J A S 0 N D J F M A M J J A
Figure 72. Phytoplankton standing crops in Wisconsin stabilization ponds May
1957, to August 1958, reported as No./ml. and as p.p.m. by volume.
Three avenues of approach are available to combat odors arising from
floating blue-green algal and other solids on stabilization ponds: (1)
Floating solids may be skimmed off and buried whenever they appear, or
, 4
a. 200
> 50
R Ei g .noid forffil Co os r NiiCvOpOrum
C r.uI. vuIgoris 0 Cilossyd..smss up,.
B ludorifte • Sg5ft5 CrucI SnIS rSCt0 59e1S?IS
0 Psndori*s moru S.Isn.strsm
El MisciI osSOus UI , ..
i If1IL JLii
I ,5
I sJ

HIGH 0.0.
— -—-..— 1L0W S.O.D.
L °
________________ ______ ____ 1 ________

Figure 73. Diagram of sewage stabilization in ponds influenced by climate in
northern Wisconsin.
as necessary; (2) the solids mass may be broken up by the application of
a hard spray of water from a pump and firehose type spray nozzle, or by
running a boat with outboard motor through the nuisance area; (3) the
formation of the floating algal mass may be controlled through the peri-
odic use of an algal-killing chemical such as copper sulfate. Users of
chemical controls have indicated that blue-green algae may be killed by
copper sulfate, but that green algae are not injured sufficiently to handi-
cap the stabilization or organic wastes. In treating a stabilization pond
with copper sulfate, the commercial grade crystals are placed in a burlap
pH 7
NH 3 -N

bag, and this, in turn, is towed in the water behind a boat as it is
propelled back and forth across the pond until the crystals dissolve, and
the pond is treated completely.
The copper sulfate dosage rate is based on the total methyl-orange al-
kalinity of the water. With a methyl orange alkalinity of less than 50
mg./l, a calculated dosage of 0.5 p.p.m. commercial copper sulfate is
used; with higher alkalinities, 1 p.p.m. copper sulfate is used. Thus, for a
high alkalinity pond that is 4 feet deep, 10 pounds of commercial copper
sulfate per acre is required. Application might be necessary as often as
every two weeks depending on pond conditions. The pond should be ob-
served closely following such a treatment to ascertain that the purpose for
which the pond was initially designed is not seriously impaired. Chemical
application will have no advantage when applied to an area that already
has substantial floating solids. These solids must be removed and buried,
or dispersed prior to treatment, because they will continue to emit odors.

U PON the introduction of waste nutritive materials into water courses,
biological slimes may develop to the extent that visible masses ap-
pear (fig. 74). These are woolly coatings on submerged objects or tufts
and strands, sometimes I 5 inches or more long, streaming in the current
from point of attachment. They vary in color from milky white in fresh
new growth to dull grey-white, brown or rusty-red, depending on age, nu-
trition, and type and amount of solids they entrap from the passing water.
In many cases, a rather heterogenous population makes up what is com-
monly called the slime floc. For exaniple. Tiegs (1938) described the
“sewage fungus ” * community as including the following organisms:
Sphaeroii/us nalans, Bcggioioa a/ba, T/iioihrix nivea, Fusariurn aquaeduc—
lain, Leptoniiius lacteus and Mueor sp. The two organisms that have been
described repeatedly as ecologically dominant are Sphaeroti/us nalans and
Leptoinirus lacteus. Butcher’s (1932) description of his “sewage fungus”
community also included the fungus Shenospora and the protozoan Car-
Numerous problems arise from the presence of slime growths in
streams. Where commercial or game fishing exists, drifting Sphaerotilus
may foul gill nets rendering them ineffective (Lincoln and Foster, 1943**;
Ingram and Towne, 1960; Wilson et al., 1960), interfere with fish hatch-
ing by coating fish eggs, and smother aquatic fauna that serve as food for
fish. Biological slimes and the materials they entrap, such as plant fibers,
wood chips, and debris, blanket the streambed and destroy the homes of
* Sphaerotilus is not a genus of a fungus, hut is a filamentous bacterium; for
years in the literature of sanitary science it has been referred to incorrectly as a
** Lincoln. J. H. and R. F. Foster. 1943. Report on the Investigation of Pollution
in the Lower Columbia River. Washington State Pollution Commission and the Ore-
gon State Sanitary Authority.

Figure 74. Massive Slime Accumulation on Commercial Fisherman’s Net
(Photo by; Horn Photo Clatskanie, Oregon, May 6, 1964)
L? L1

clean water associated organisms. Because organic food is usually abun-
dant where slime growths occur, pollution tolerant organisms such as
sludgeworms may become abundant in association with slime growths.
These organisms do not offer the fishfood potential that clean water asso-
ciated species do. Conditions may become so severe that all benthos are
Kramer and Smith (1965) found that suspended conifer groundwood
fibers had no effect upon egg survival, respiration rate of embryos, or
growth rates of alevins and juveniles from eggs incubated in fiber but
hatched and grown in clean water. When alevins were held in woodfiber
suspensions, survival was reduced from 98 to 100 percent in controls to 0
to 72 percent in 250-p.p.m. fiber. Walleye (Stizostedion vitreum vitreum)
eggs were incubated in a temporary jar hatchery using Rainy River water
taken downstream from paper mills discharging sulfite, kraft, insulating
board, and groundwood wastes (Smith and Kramer, 1963). Eggs were
also incubated in trays held on and off the bottom in the river down-
stream from the mills, upstream from the mills, and in tributary streams.
In two years. survival of eggs in jar controls was 31.2 to 73.5 percent.
Survival to hatching of eggs jar-incubated in polluted water was 0.02 to
6.0 percent. At river stations downstream from the mills, survival of tray
eggs on the bottom did not exceed 1.2 percent; and offbottom, 3.5 per-
cent. Eggs held on the bottom upstream from the mills had maximum sur-
vivals of 37.6 percent; and off the bottom, 49.1 percent. Jn most experi-
ments in polluted Rainy River water the principal cause of mortality was
Sphaerorilus growths on the eggs, which prevented successful emergence
of fry. Prior to hatching, egg survival rates in jars were similar in controls
and in experiments. Chemical treatment to remove slime increased the
hatch of eggs. Sphaeroti lus-covered eggs removed to fresh water lost the
bacterium and hatched at a high rate.
Biological slimes bring about an aesthetically unpleasant stream. To the
public, they are an obvious sign of stream pollution (fig. 75). Prolific
slime growths destroy the recreational potential of the water, thus interfer-
ing with one of the major public-associated uses of water.
Because most bacteria respond directly to the introduction of organic
materials to the water course, they may be considered the major factor in
the self-purification processes occurring in most natural waters. Slime
growths in natural waters function similarly to those in treatment plants in
the stabilization of organic materials. In simulated stream studies, bio-
chemical oxygen demand (BOD) reductions as high as 87 percent were
obtained at waste retentions as low as 33 minutes after extensive slime
growths had developed. In one experiment, 11.5 mg./l BOD were re-
moved during this short time interval. Similar high purification rates have
also been observed in many shallow, turbulent streams in which slime
growths were the major force in the self-purification process (Amberg
and Cormack, 1960).

ri ure 75. Slimes from waving masses in poiluted streams that destroy me
habitat for animals, as well as the aesthetics of the waterway.
“ I
‘pt ’

Dondero (1961) cited a number of quantitative measurements that
have been made on Sphaerotilus infestation of streams. Although the
productivity of polluted streams is difficult to estimate, some measure-
ments on detached masses of floating Sp/zaerotilus have been made from
which the amount of material passing the river cross section has been cal-
culated, for example: (a) in the Danube and Main Rivers, about 46 tons
wet weight per day of drifting Sp/iaerotili s (Demoll and Liebmann.
1952); (b) in the Main 325 tons, wet weight per day (Liebmann, 1953):
and (c) in the Oker River, 12.5-100 gm. dry weight per cubic meter of
water (Popp and Bahr, 1954) , By using the factor 7 percent (Popp and
Bahr, 1954: Liebmann, 1953, used 8 percent), the wet weight values can
be converted to 4.5 and 22.7 tons dry weight. respectively. Such values
indicate the potential for the deposition of large amounts of decomposing
Sphaerotilus. Popp and Bahr (1954) measured deposition in layers 1 to 2
meters thick in areas of high oxygen deficiency. There was a high degree
of secondary pollution resulting from the decomposition of the Sphaeroti-
his sludge for months after heavy pollution with sugar waste. The oxygen
demand of dead Sphaeroiilus sludge was about 11 times that of the same
amount of living Sphaeroti!us.
The filamentous sewage bacterium, Sphaerorilus natans, has been impli-
cated in the bulking of activated sludge (Lackey and Wattie, 1940)
Ruchhoft and Kachmar (1941) concluded that Sp/zaerotihis was a deli-
cate indicator of disturbances of the biological equilibrium of activated
sludge but not a primary cause of bulking. It has been found in paper ma-
chine wet felts, and clogging of the felts with Sphaerotilus was experimen-
tally produced (Drescher. 1957). It has created problems by clogging in-
take screens and cooling water lines in powerplants.
The secondary effects of biological slimes in streams may be even more
serious (fig. 76). The stream slime community is composed of a variety
of microorganisms that are held together as a mat principally by Splzaero-
thus. Such interwoven mats entrap silt, sand, fibers, and chips. The fila-
mentous masses offer shelter and support for other organisms such as bac-
teria, protozoans. nematodes . rotifers. and occasionally midge larvae.
During the process of decomposition, or because of physical disturbances,
mats sometimes as large as 3-feet in diameter “boil” to the water’s surface
in an unsightly foul-smelling eruption. These “boils” may settle at or near
the point of origin or be carried downstream to areas where the flow ye-
locity permits settling. Here sludge banks are formed that give rise to an-
aerobic conditions with subsequent offensive effects. These sludge banks
may be formed many miles downstream from the initiating pollution
source, thus increasing the stream reach of pollution.
There were at least 3 kinds of slime or biological masses affecting gill
nets in the Columbia River *: (a) slimes composed mostly of wood fib-

, - i/
r ’_ —i —
F iy
Figure 76. Dried wastes from pulp and paper-making operations. These fibers
are often held together by Sphaerotilus and other slimes, forming a blanket
over the streambed. -
* A report, Pollution of Interstate \\‘aters of the Lower Columbia River. U.S. De-
partment of Health, Education, and \Velhire, Water Supply and Pollution Control
Program, Region 1X, Portland, Oreg., August 1965.
‘I. P

ers, stuck together by Sphaerosilus 1 which is very difficult to remove from
nets when wet and nearly impossible to remove when dry because it hard-
ens to a substance resembling plastic wood; (b) biological masses, princi-
pally plant trash and leaf and grass fragments, which adhere to nets when
wet, but crumble away when dry; (c) masses composed almost entirely of
Sphaeroti lus.
The appearance of Sphaerntilus in streams as the dominant organism
has repeatedly been correlated with the entry of industrial wastes (Harri-
son and Heukelekian, 1958). Butcher (1932) stated that it is associated
with effluents from the following industries: beet sugar, paper, rayon,
glue, and flour mills. Other observers have noted its occurence following
waste discharges such as textile bleach, byproduct coke, dairy wastes, and
spent sulfite liquors. Wuhrmann (1949) asserted that the organism does
not grow in undiluted sewage. DeMartini (1934) reported the organism
in sewers carrying very dilute sewage, and Agersborg and Hatfield
(1929) noted that it was present in raw sewage, Imhoff tanks, and aera-
tion tanks. Amberg and Cormack (1960) stated that Sphaerotilus grew on
kraft effluents as well as on spent sulfite liquor. No slime growth was ob-
tained from the kraft bleach plant effluents. They stated further that slime
growths may be expected in discharges of weak wash waters and evapora-
tor condensate from evaporation and burning of spent sulphite liquor.
Amberg and Cormack cited Scheuring and Hohnl (1956) to the effect that
Sphaeroti lus natans will grow at sulphite waste liquor dilutions of 1: 700 .
000 or at BOD levels in the range of 0.05 to 0.10 mg./l. The ability of
slime growths to extract nutrients from large volumes of flowing water at
extremely low waste concentrations presents a difficult problem in obtain-
ing adequate control.
Sp lzaerotilus can assume a variety of different appearances that are cor-
related with different nutrient conditions. The organisms giving rise to the
Sphaerotilus slime growths must be present in the flowing stream at all
times because of the sudden appearance of slimes following the introduc-
tion of pollution.
Naumann (1933) was quoted by Harrison and Heukelekian (1958) as
early investigatng the possbility of C ladothrix dichotoma being trans-
formed into Sphaerorilus natans under certain conditions. These orga-
nisms are similar, except that Cladothrx dichotoma exhibits regular
dichotomous branching of the filaments and does not have the slimy
sheath of Sphaerotllas. Pringsheim (1949) showed that Sphaerotilus na-
tans, Cladot/iirx dicliotonia, and the ecologically distinct Leptothrix oc/z-
racea could give rise to similar cultures by appropriate treatments.
Under laboratory conditions the most important food requirements nec-
essary for heavy growth were sugars and organic nitrogen (Lackey and
Wattie, 1940). These authors and others (Ruchhoft and Kachmar, 1941)

described a culture method with a medium that was found to contain am-
pie quantities of all the nutrient materials for the growth of Sphaerotilus
natans. This medium contained the following materials:
Dextrose 1 ,ooo
Peptone 600
Meat extract 200
Urea 50
Na2HPO 4 50
Na G Is
CaC 12 7
MgSO 4 S
KU 7
Distilled water to make 1 liter
The media was sterilized, seeded with Sphaerotilus and aerated continu-
ously through a ball diffuser. Growth occurred in 24 hours.
There is general agreement that the luxurious growths similar to those
found under stream conditions cannot be reproduced in the laboratory
with inorganic sources of nitrogen. There are many references in the liter-
ature to the necessity of a supply of amino acids by Sphaerotilus. The or-
ganism does not require accessory growth factors such as vitamins
(Wuhrmann and Koestler, 1950). Harrison and Heukelekian (1958)
stated that cultural experiments showed growth of Sphaerozilus when ni-
trate is the nitrogen supply. There was evidence that the utilization of am-
monium compounds depended on the carbon supply. For luxurious
growth, an organic nitrogen supply was necessary. A wide variety of or-
ganic compounds can serve as carbon sources for Sphaerotilus; these in-
clude mono- and di-saceharides, organic acids, alcohols, and amino acids.
Höhnl (1955) concluded that visible Sphaerotilus growths do not oc-
cur as long as the pH is below 5.5. A pH of 6 to 7 is favorable for growth.
Optimum temperature is 10 to 15° C. Amberg and Cormack (1960)
observed excellent slime growths in the Columbia River where stream
velocities ranged from 0.4 to 2.0 feet per second. Increases in velocity
at constant concentrations increase the amount of food passing a unit
growing surface. These authors stress the importance of both phosphorus
and nitrogen for optimum growth. Working on the Columbia River, they
observed active competition between iflamentous and planktonic algae
and Sphaerotilus for available phosphorus.
Phaup and Gannon (1967) described ecological investigations in an
experimental outdoor channel receiving beet sugar or crude molasses.
Sphaerotilus-dominated biological flocs were stimulated to bloom propor-
tions within 30 hours after the addition of as little as 1 mg./l sucrose.
Maximum growth was obtained at a concentration of 5 mg./l sucrose at
velocities from 0.58 to 1.49 ft./sec. in the temperature range of 20 to 28°
C. after 72 hours of feeding. Under these conditions, detached and float-
ing materials were equivalent to new material being formed. Maximum

growth and classical Sphaerotiluy flocs could not be obtained at tempera-
tures below 17° C.
Ormerod et al. (1966), in working also with outdoor channels, found
that additions of calcium-base spent sulphite liquor caused massive
growths of a community dominated by Sphaerotilus natans, with a pink ifi-
amentous organism frequently epiphytic on the Sphaerotilus. When the
temperature fell below 10° C., Leptomitus lacteus appeared among the
growths of SphaerotÜus and the pink organism grew epiphyticaily on
Spbaerotilus Control
Lackey and Wattie (1940) tested substances for toxicity for Sphaeroti-
lus in activated sludge or in cultures and found that the following were
toxic at the doses indicated (mg./l): chlorine (0.5 residual), silver nitrate
(0.5—2.0), phenol (5.0). acetic acid (50), brilliant green (5.0), malach-
ite green (5.0), Janus green (20), methylene blue (20), and gentian vi-
olet (10). Chlorine was considered to be the most feasible substance for
large scale use, as in water and sewage treatment plants.
In water treatment plants, high initial doses of chlorine are required to
remove establised slimes. Repeated dosing to 50 to 100 mg./l residual
chlorine followed by high-pressure air and flushing has been used (Alex-
ander, 1944). After dislodgment of the slimes, 0.75 to 1.0 mg./l residual
chlorine was maintained in the effluent water. DeMartini (1934) recom-
mended 2 mg./l in wastes for Sphaerotilus control in sewers.
Amberg and Cormack (1960) found, in laboratory studies, that inter-
mittent discharge of spent sulphite liquor for 24 hours followed by 5 days
of storage was very effective in reducing slime growth by more than 80
percent. Field studies showed that by discharging 24 hours every 6 days,
growth was lower than growth obtained from 4 the total liquor dis-
charged continuously.
Sphaerotilus infestations were controlled downstream from a southern
Kraft pulp mill by retaining all black liquor from entering the river during
optimum conditions for slime growth. The liquor was held for a period of
5 to 6 days and released over a 1- to 2-day period, which was insufficient
time for an infestation to materialize (McKeown, 1962).
Leptomitus lacteus is a member of the most abundant order of aquatic
fungi, the Saprolegniales. No cells are visible in the organism, although
characteristic constrictions give it a pseudoseptate appearance. The con-
strictions are a result of the presence of cellulin plugs, whose function is
unknown. Harrison and Heukelekian (1958) state that Leptomitus re-
quires high molecular weight compounds of nitrogen to supply its needs
for this element. Schade (1940) has confirmed that no growth occurs

with ammonium, nitrate, or nitrite compounds, even in the presence of
available carbon compounds. The optimum pH for luxuriant growth is
5.4 to 6.0 and the suitable pH range is 4.3 to 7.5; it can exist below pH
Fouling Bacteria
Iron bacteria are typically aerobic organisms, widely distributed in na-
ture, and commonly observed in most habitats. Generally they are consid-
ered fouling organisms and not agents of corrosion, but they may indi-
rectly contribute to the latter. Energy is derived from the oxidation of
ferrous iron to the ferric state and in the process, ferric hydrate is precipi-
tated. The iron withdrawn from the water is deposited in the form of
hydrated ferric hydroxide on or in the mucilaginous sheaths of the organ-
ism. These processes produce a large amount of brown slime and may
impart a reddish tinge and an unpleasant odor to water.
The occurrence of iron bacteria was observed in northern Wisconsin
drainage waters in which deposits had accumulated to a depth of 2 feet
throughout several miles of drainage ditch. Control was effected with
3-p.p.m. copper sulfate application. Springs often have reddish-brown de-
posits produced by the activity of iron bacteria, and stagnant marshes
may produce a reddish scum resulting from this activity. As early as the
middle of the nineteenth century, iron bacteria in potable water supplies
were reported to be the causative organisms of taste and odor problems,
and the condition was called a “water calamity.”
Starkey (1945) reviews the transformation of iron by bacteria in water
and states that iron bacteria are some of the most important fouling orga-
nisms because they not only produce troublesome accumulations of cell
material but also produce still greater quantifies of ferric hydrate. In addi-
tion to the iron bacteria there are various other bacteria, including sulfur
bacteria and sulfate-reducing bacteria, which are responsible for various
transformations of iron. Some bring iron into solution, others cause its
precipitation and some are responsible for corrosion.
Some of the sulfur bacteria are encountered occassionally in water, par-
ticularly in water containing sulfide or elemental sulfur. One of the typical
sulfur bacteria, Thiobacillus thiooxidans, may bring large amounts of iron
into solution under conditions favorable for its development. It is an aero-
bic bacterium that has the capacity to oxidize sulfur, and has been linked
to the corrosion of iron pipelines.
Sulfate-reducing bacteria are of importance in water distribution sys-
tems because they produce sulfide which is dissolved in the water and
makes the water objectionable by reason of the odor, the presence of sus-
pended black particles, and the corrosive effect of the sulfide on steel and
other metals. In cases where the water in iron pipes and concrete conduits
contains sulfide or where sulfide is produced as in sewage, and the pipe is
only partly filled so that there is an air blanket over the water, some of

the sulfide becomes dissolved in the moisture film on the upper walls of
the pipe. Here it undergoes oxidation, caused principally by sulfur bacte-
ria, and the sulfuric acid that is formed attacks the pipe, causing its disin-
tegration (Starkey, 1945).
Alexander (1944) stresses that in controlling slime-forming iron and
sulfur organisms in a water supply, control is only partly attained when
the plant effluent is made sterile. It is equally important to clean up and
maintain a distribution system free from iron and sulfur organisms, a sys-
tem in which chlorine residuals will be carried to the remotest part of the
distribution system.

A PART from the investigation of water pollution problems, waterworks
infestations, or waste treatment characterizations, the aquatic biologist
is often called upon to consult on nuisance aquatic organisms, and to
proffer recommendations for their control. Nuisance organisms may be ei-
ther plant or animal, and there are many varieties of each.
Plant nuisances may curtail or eliminate bathing, boating, water skiing,
and sometimes fishing; perpetrate psychosomatic illness in man by emit-
ting vile stenches; impart tastes and odors to water supplies; shorten filter
runs or otherwise hamper industrial and municipal water treatment; im-
pair areas of picturesque beauty; reduce or restrict resort trade; lower wa-
ter front property values; interfere with the manufacture of a product in
industry, such as paper; on occasion become toxic to certain warm-
blooded animals that ingest the water; foul irrigation siphon tubes and
trashracks; and cause skin rashes and hay-fever-like symptoms in man.
These plant nuisances may be grouped into the algae and the higher aqu-
atic plants. Algae appear as floating scums; suspended matter giving rise
to murky, turbid water or water having a “pea soup” appearance; attached
filaments; and bottom dwelling types that may be confused with the rooted
higher aquatic plants. The higher aquatic plants grow submersed, float-
ing, or emersed .
When aquatic animals become excessively abundant, they become pests
and nuisances to man because of their biting habits and their sheer mass
of numbers. Some aquatic animals serve as intermediate hosts for para-
sites that may attack man directly and some serve as vectors of diseases
that affect the health of man. Animal congregations often cause hydraulic
problems in water transport systems.
Most algal problems occur when growth conditions permit the form-
tion of a “bloom.” A bloom is an unusually large number of cells (usually

one or a few species) per unit of surface water, which often can be dis-
cerned visually by the greeh, blue-green, brown or even brilliant red dis-
coloration of the water. Lackey (1949) arbitrarily defined a bloom as
500 individuals per ml. of raw water. He found bloom conditions 509
times during a 2-year survey of 16 southeastern Wisconsin lakes and of 3
rivers in 1942—43. Of this number, only 13 percent were blue-green al-
gae, generally the most troublesome nuisance-producing group. Diatoms
are rarely obnoxious except in water supplies; they predominated in 40
percent of the blooms. The lake with the highest concentration of inor-
ganic nitrogen (N) and inorganic phosphorus (P), 0.79 and 0.38 mg./l
respectively, bad the most blooms—i 12 during the 2-year period.
Algae are found in every non-toxic aquatic habitat. Constituting a pri-
mary source of food for fish and other aquatic animals, they may be
free-floating and free-swimming, or attached to the bottom substratum.
There are some 1,500 genera and 17,400 species of algae, according to
Fuller and Tippo (1954). Fresh-water algae fail into major groups in-
cluding (a) blue-green algae; (b) green algae; (c) yellow-green algae;
(d) golden-brown algae and diatoms; (e) red algae; (f) euglenoids and
(g) dinoflagellates.
The blue-green algae (Cyanophyta) are extremely primitive in several
respects. The plant body is a single cell; colonies may be formed that are
loose aggregations of similar cells among which there is little or no differ-
entiation. Their nuclear material is not organized into a definite nucleus.
but is scattered throughout the center of the cell. Green chlorophyll is not
localized in definitely formed bodies, but is diffused throughout the pe-
ripheral portion of the cell. In addition to the green chlorophyll there is a
blue pigment and sometimes a red pigment. Reproduction is by simple di-
vision (fission). Blue-green algae produce “water blooms,” “pea soup”
appearance, septic “pig-pen” odors; impart a “fish taste”; and cover rocks
with slimy gelatinous masses.
Green algae (Ch lorophyta) have pigments that are principally chloro-
phyll confined to chloroplasts or definite bodies. There is an organized nu-
cleus, and the motile cells, either vegetative or reproductive, have flagella.
The yellow-green algae, golden-brown algae, and diatoms (Chryso-
phta) have the pigment confined to definite bodies. There is a greater
proportion of yellow or brown pigment than chlorophyfl. The cell wall of
the diatoms is composed of silica.
The euglenoids (Euglenophyta) are unicellular, motile, and bear one to
four flagella. They have a definite nucleus with grass-green chlorophyll lo-
calized in definite chlorophyll bearing bodies (Plastids).
The group of dinoflagellates (Pyrrophyta) includes a great diversity of
mostly pigmented and mobile unicellular organisms. Two flagella are pres-
ent. Brown pigments predominate, although chlorophyll is present.
Excessive algal growths are troublesome in many ways. When present
in great numbers, algae may: give an unsightly blue-green or green ap-

pearance to the water, form a massive floating scum that obstructs naviga-
tion or impairs water use, in decay produce noxious odors that drive peo-
pie from the area, remove dissolved oxygen from the water when
decomposing and kill aquatic life as a result, foul fish harvesting equip-
ment and water intake devices, reduce the carrying capacity of water dis-
trubution systems, and destroy bathing and other water use areas. Stigeo-
clonium, Oedogonium, U lothrix, and C/ado phora have been problems in
irrigation systems where they have restricted flow in the canals, and
fouled pumps and tubes. Cladophora has been a problem of great concern
in Lakes Ontario, Erie, and Michigan where abundant growths have be-
come detached through wave and wind action to be washed upon a beach
where they decompose to make the area uninhabitable.
Blue-green algae have been severe nuisance problems, especially to
those engaged in water oriented recreation in most eutrophic lakes. Chara,
a branched erect alga that becomes encrusted with calcareous deposits
giving the plant a rough surface, has become a problem in many high al-
kalinity lakes and ponds. Often Chara becomes abundant following the de-
struction of aquatic vascular plants. Should the lake or pond bed be com-
posed of a peat-type material, Chara can become detached from its
mooring and bring substantial quantities of bottom with it when it rolls to
the surface in 9-inch thick rafts that obstruct navigation, destroy aquatic
aesthetics, and emit vile odors. The author has witnessed dead tree
stumps. with root systems that measure 20-feet in diameter, embedded in
these floating Chara rafts.
In highly enriched streams, green algal streamers that may exceed 50-
feet in length provide an excellent substrate for blackfly larvae, midge lar-
vae, and other nuisance animals.
More and more interest is being aroused in the toxic effects of fresh-
water algae on animals. This interest stems partly from a recent upswing
in the number of reported cases of animal poisonings related to algal
blooms, and from a growing appreciation of the strictly scientific and
biological problems involving the physiology of algae, especially those that
produce toxic substances (possibly toxins), antibiotics, and growth-stimu-
lating excretions (Ingram and Prescott, 1954).
Wheeler et al. (1942), stated that no human outbreaks of gastroenteri-
us have ever been traced to algal contamination of drinking water, and
that it is probable that the tastes and odors almost invariably associated
with severe algal pollution would cause humans to seek other sources for
drinking water before a harmful amount of the polluted water would be
consumed. These authors state: “It should be noted that the presence of
algae in drinking water, in addition to causing tastes and odors, may have
some importance from the standpoint of the allergist as algae may, on oc-
casion, liberate considerable amounts of protein in water. If allergic reac-
tions to algae proteins do occur, they would be as uncommon as they
would be obscure and hardly likely to occur as a public health problem.”

Scbwiinmer and Schwimmer (1955) chronologically summated 38 inci-
dents of animal intoxications by phytoplankton from 1878 to 1951. In
most cases the attacks occurred after the animals had drunk from lakes or
ponds containing heavy algal growths, usually during successive days of
hot weather. The reported symptoms of algal intoxications vary but the
most striking clinically were the involvements of neuromuscular and respi-
ratory systems in cattle. As aptly described by Francis (1878), “the ani-
mals developed stupor and unconsciousness, falling and remaining quiet,
as if asleep unless touched, when convulsions came on, with the head and
neck drawn back by rigid spasm which subsided before death.”
Fitch et al. (1934), observed that when samples of toxic algae were
fed in the fresh state to guinea pigs, rabbits, and chickens, death occurred
in a very short time. When toxic algae were stored for a brief period at
ice box temperature, or dried, it was further observed that it was almost
impossible to produce death by feeding, but with a similar dose, animals
could be killed quickly by inoculating intraperitoneally. The specific alga
or algae used are not listed.
The syndrome of symptoms, described by Fitch et al., exhibited by
guinea pigs from the feeding or from the inoculation intraperitoneally of a
fatal dose of toxic algae was: (1) restlessness; (2) urination; (3) defeca-
tion; (4) deep breathing; (5) weakness in the hind quarters; (6) sneez-
ing; (7) coughing; (8) salivation; (9) lachrymation; (10) clonic spasms
and death. In studying experimental deaths of guinea pigs, it was noted
that they occasionally show symptoms of intoxication and then recover.
Olson (1952) pointed out that the toxicity of unpurified algal material
from field collections varies a great deal. For example, 0.02 ml. injected
into mice intraperitoneally may kill a 20-gram individual in an hour,
whereas from another sample it may require 2.0 to 3.0 ml to produce
death in 18 hours. Certain samples of toxic algae (0.1 ml fatal dose) taken
from a lake 1 day kill mice in 20 minutes, whereas 9 days later, samples
from the same lake with a greatly increased dosage (2.0 ml) may require
5 hours to produce death.
The poisoning of wild and domestic animals by a toxic waterbloom of
Nosioc rivulare Kuetz from a pond in central Texas has been described
by Davidson (1959). Cattle, fish, frogs, and fowl that drank the water
containing a heavy growth of the alga became acutely ill, and many died
within a short period of time. Most of the accompanying symptoms were
similar to those described for a number of other toxic waterblooms. Intra-
peritoneal injections of albino mice with fresh algal material or with ex-
tracts prepared from preserved material produced symptoms that were
uniform. The characteristic symptoms were restlessness, increased respira-
tory rate, renal and intestinal disorders, decrease in blood sugar, decrease
in blood coagulation time, decrease in red blood cell count, increase in
the rate of heart beat, and paralysis of the hindquarters. Subcutaneous
injections resulted in complete necrosis of the abdominal wall, including

the skin. The mice that survived developed tumors on the shoulders;
two mice experienced evisceration, and the eye of one completely atro-
The minimal lethal dosage of the fresh alga was found to be 0.0933
rng./g. of body weight in mice. The toxic factor was soluble in ethanol or
water and was rendered inactive when autoclaved at 15 psi pressure for
20 minutes; it affects the neuromuscular and respiratory systems of albino
Gorbam (1964) reviewed the literature on toxic algae as a public
health hazard. He concluded that the fish and livestock poisons produced
by waterblooms were nuisances and economic hazards rather than public
health hazards. It was estimated that the oral minimum lethal dose of de-
composing toxic Microcystis bloom for a 150-pound man would be 1 to 2
quarts of thick, paint-like suspension. Gorham stated that this amount
would not be ingested voluntarily; however, in the case of an accident,
such a quantity might be ingested involuntarily.
Mackenthun and Ingram (1967) chronologically listed 20 outbreaks of
human gastrointestinal disorders, 14 recorded human respiratory disor-
ders, and 10 human skin disorders, all associated with algae.
Aquatic Vascular Plants
In the long-term cycle of the change in the aquatic terrain there is a
continuing tendency for the land to encroach upon shallow ponds and
shallow areas of lakes, decrease their size, make them more shallow, and
eventually return them to dry land. Rooted aquatic vegetation plays a
prominent role in this gradual process by invading shallow water areas
through entrapment of particulate silt that is carried into lakes and ponds.
The rooted vegetation will continue to spread as water areas become more
shallow and the bottom mud provides suitable anchorage for roots. Plants
contribute also to the filling in of lakes through both the precipitation of
calcium carbonate and the accumulation of their remains upon death and
While these lake invasion and encroachment activities by higher aquatic
plants may sometimes be sufficiently rapid to be recognized by those who
habitually use the lake, the common objections to rooted vegetation stem
from their immediate interference with recreational use such as outboard
motor propeller clogging, and encroachment on navigation channels and
swimming beaches. The depth of water determines the adjustment of
aquatic seed plants into three principal categories. Emersed weeds are
those that occupy shallow water, are rooted in bottom mud, and support
foliage, seeds and mature fruit one or more feet above the water surface.
Cattails and rushes are familiar examples. Surfacc or floating weeds gen-
erally grow in deeper water at the front of (and oftentimes commingling
with) the emersed weeds. The larger floating weeds are water lilies that
may be rooted in the mud of the bottom and bear large leaves that float

upon the surface. Smaller types such as the duckweeds are free-floating.
Submersed aquatic growths often form a belt or zone of herbage farthest
from shore. Except for those forms that dwell in quiet waters, they are
rooted to the bottom. Depth varies considerably within this zone and
may extend down to the limits of effective light penetration.
Physical factors, such as light intensity, water temperature, wave ac-
tion, flow velocity, water depth and type of substrate, all interact to gov-
em establishment of weed beds or weed sparsity, and determine the rate
at which they grow. Many submersed plants continue active in winter,
provided ice and snow cover are not sufficiently opaque to reduce light
pentration so that growth is impeded. Once established in an area, rooted
aquatic plants exhibit a high degree of persistence and efficiency of
propagation. Some reproduce only by means of seeds formed in insect-
pollinated flowers borne at or above the water surface; others may propa-
gate by buds, tubers, roots, and node fragments in addition to producing
viable seeds. Factors that limit growth include lack of sufficient light, in-
sufficient nutrients, physical instability because of water level fluctuation
and current and wave action, an unsuitable bottom stratum, and competi-
tion by other plants and animals.
Aquatic vascular plants are most abundant in old lakes or those fertile
water bodies in which there has been thick deposition of soil from land
erosion. These plants provide food, shelter and attachment surfaces for
other organisms, dissolved oxygen to the water under favorable light con-
ditions, remove and temporarily store nutrients, and serve as spawning or
as schooling areas for some fish. Plant populations may become suf-
ficiently dense to limit or restrict water use by physical obstruction, to
remove large quantities of water through transpiration, and to contribute
to the stunting of fish populations. Upon death and decay, stored nutrients
are released for the development of new generations of aquatic biota.
Dispersal of water plants is accomplished largely by water transport,
migratory birds, and, to a lesser extent, domestic and other animals. Seeds
may remain viable after passing through the digestive tract of animals,
and seeds and other means of propagation may be transported by animals
externally. Water plants usually produce an abundance of seeds, but prop-
agation through vegetative means is a most effective method of distribu-
tion. A small broken portion of a healthy plant may soon reestablish it-
sell, when, in settling out of water, it roots again on a suitable substrate.
Most aquatic plants are perennials and are well adapted to withstand
heavy cropping by animals.
Ducks commonly feed on the seeds, tubers, rootstocks, and foilage of
water plants. Martin and Uhler (1939) in a summary based on a study of
the stomach contents of 7,998 ducks of 18 species collected in 247 locali-
ties scattered in all but 6 of the States and in one Canadian province re-
ported that nearly half the food consumed was derived from the higher
freshwater plants (table 14).

For many years, aquatic and bank weeds in irrigation and drainage sys-
tems in the Western States have caused serious financial losses annually
(Timmons, 1960). Submersed water-weeds such as pondweeds (Potamo-
geton spp.) reduce the flow in channels, causing higher water levels,
breakage in canal banks, increased seepage into adjoining croplands,
greater losses of water by evaporation and inadequate delivery of irriga-
tion water to farms or inadequate drainage of water from croplands. De-
creased flow velocity causes increased sedimentation; this reduces capacity
and makes more frequent mechanical cleaning necessary. Algae and weed
fragments clog sprinklers, pumps, screens, valves, and pipes, and create
problems at pumping plants in irrigation and drainage systems. Emergent
aquatic weeds such as cattails (Typha spp.) and bank weeds, and phrea-
tophytes like willows (Salix spp.) and salt cedar (Tamarix pentandra)
transpire tremendous quantities of water from canals and reservoirs into
the dry air. Weeds prevent proper inspection and maintenance of irriga-
tion and drain canals.
Table 14. Plants that constitute over 1 percent of the total game duck food.
(From Martin and Uh ler, 1939.)
Pondweed Potamogeton . .
. .
Wild rice Zinnia
Bulrush Scirpus
Chufa Cypenis
Smartweed Po!ygonum
Watershield Brasenia
Wigeongrass Ruppia
Spikerush Eleocharis
Muskgrass Chara
Duclcweed Lemnaceae
Wild millet Echinochola
Waterlily Nymphaea
Wild celery Vallisneria
Coontail Ceratophyllurn
Naiad Najas
A survey conducted in 1948 by the Bureau of Reclamation of the U.S.
Department of the Interior (Balcom, 1950) showed that nearly 150,000
acre-feet of water were lost each year by evapotranspiration in the Bu-
reau’s 14,075 miles of canals and laterals because of weeds. By assigning
a productive value of $20 per acre-foot to this lost water and adding the
cost for ditch-bank repairs and damage to flooded crops attributed to
weeds, the loss in irrigation systems built by the Bureau of Reclamation
was estimated at nearly $3 million annually. When these loses were pro-
jected to all irrigation systems in the 17 Western States, by using the
1940 Census figures of 120,386 miles of unlined canals, an estimate of
$25.5 million loss annually because of weeds was obtained.
In 1957 these figures were updated (Timmons, 1960). The total an-
nual water loss from transpiration, increased evaporation, and overflows
because of aquatic weeds in the 17 Western States was estimated at
1,966,068 acre-feet; this would have been sufficient to irrigate 330,000 to
780,000 acres of cropland depending upon the length of the growing sea-

son, evaporation losses, and other factors. The total cost of losses caused
by weeds for the 17 Western States was estimated at $5,739,164. The to-
tal cost of weed control in these States was $8,113,297.
Sponges in irrigation systems can cause hydraulic problems when grow-
ing in association with other aquatic animals and plants. This undesirable
effect is compounded by the favorable substrate they create for a wide va-
riety of other aquatic pest organisms.
“The fresh water Bryozoa, or “pipe moss,” are a group of invertebrate
aquatic animals that are often mistaken for a mat of dead moss. Colonies
of these animals are plant like in appearance except for their coloration,
which is brownish-white. Bryozoa attach to logs, rocks, and other sub-
merged objects, usually where the light is relatively dim. They have been
found on a number of irrigation systems growing in profusion on concrete
canal linings, submerged inlet screens, louvers, trashracks, and on the in-
side of pipes. The individual animal is microscopic. more or less cylindri-
cal with a thin-body wall. These animals secrete a thin protective layer
about the body wall. Many of the individual animals grow in close asso-
ciation with one another to produce a connected, highly branched, antler-
like colony. The protective coatings of these colonies of animals are the
most conspicuous feature, being massive and tough, or delicate and gelati-
nous, depending on the species. Oftentimes, young colonies continue to
grow on the remaining protective layers of the dead animals, and produce
a thick mat on a solid substrate.” (Otto and Bartley, 1965.)
Bryozoa growing on submerged water sturetures and in conduits have
been known to create serious hydraulic problems for water distribution
structures. Two bryozoan species known to infest Bureau of Reclamation
irrigation systems sufficiently to become problems are Plumatella repens
Linnaeus and Fredericella sultana Blumenback (Otto and Bartley, 1965.)
Midges or blind mosquitoes, have created nuisance problems around
the shores of a number of lakes. The creation in New York City during
1936 and 1937 of Fountain and Willow Lakes, high in organic content,
on what had previously been salt marsh meadow open to tidal action, ap-
parently created optimal conditions for the breeding of a number of spe-
cies of chironomids. As a result, midge adults were present in enormous
numbers near the shores of these lakes within the World’s Fair site during
the summer of 1938 (Fellton. 1940). The waters apparently were very
rich because the organic matter originally present on the bottom began
decomposing as soon as flooding occurred. Raw sewage was added to the
lakes, and much of the fertilizer applied on grass and ornamental plants
near their shores was soon washed into the water. Laboratory experiments
to guide control operations were performed with a number of chemicals;
these resulted in the use of rotenone as a control agent at concentrations

of 6 and 10 p.p.m. Concurrently, copper sulfate was applied to control
the algae.
For a number of years Winter Haven, Fla., has expected blind mos-
quito problems from two adjacent lakes that receive raw sewage and
treated effluent from the city. The midge involved was identified as Glyp-
totendipes paripes (Edwards); Provost (1958) attributed its overproduc-
tion to excessively fertilized waters. Because midges feed almost exclu-
sively on algae, lakes rich in algal production are likely also to be high in
midge production. Since emergence of the adults takes place from the en-
tire surface of a lake at approximately the same time, nuisances result
from the mass of numbers.
The periodic appearance of a large number of gnats, Chaoborus astic-
topus Dyar and Shannon, during the summer has presented a problem to
residents of Clear Lake, Lake County, Calif., for many years and has ad-
versely affected a large resort business (Hunt and Bischoff, 1960). Clear
Lake has an area of over 41,600 acres. Walker * found that emergence
took place from late April to early October with peak emergence in late
July or early August. A series of tests over 2 years showed the average to-
tal seasonal emergence to exceed 500 gnats per square foot. Walker cal-
culated that the total seasonal production on the upper arm of the lake,
comprising 44 square miles, approximated 712 billion gnats or 356 tons
of organisms. One night’s emergence was estimated at 3½ billion, and
bottom samples contained as many as 1,000 per square toot.
Serious outbreaks of the midge, Chironotnus plumosus (Linnacus),
have plagued residents and industries in the Lake Winnebago area of Wis-
consin for years. Winnebago is a large, shallow, fertile lake of 137,000
Adult mayffies have caused damage in certain local areas (Burks,
1953). Unusual hordes of these insects may leave the water on the first
suitable day for hatching after a period of adverse weather. The adults are
fragile insects that die within a few hours; when occurring in hordes their
dead bodies may clog ventilator ducts and sewers and may cause tempo-
rary traffic difficulties. On July 23, 1940, at Sterling, Ill., mayflies piled as
high as 4 feet blocked traffic over the Fulton-Clinton highway bridge for
nearly 2 hours. Fifteen men in hip boots used shovels and a snowplow to
clear a path.
Fremling (1960) reported on mayfly problems caused by the large bur-
rowing mayfly [ 1-lexagenia bilineata (Say) in some areas of the Missis-
sippi River. Upon emerging “. . . the mayflies rest on terrestrial objects
during the day, and under their weight tree limbs become pendulous and
even break. Residents of summer homes along the river find their houses
covered and their yards littered by the insects. A constant rustle is heard
* Walker, J, R., 1949. The Clear Lake Gnat, Chaoborus astictopus—A Review of
Investigations and the Proposed 1949 Clear Lake Treatment Program. Bureau of
Vector Control, Department of Public Health, California, 12 pp. (mimeo).

as the insects are disturbed and fly up from their resting places. The dead
insects and their cast nymphal exuviae form foul-smelling drifts where
they are washed up along the shore. . . . Crews of the towboats which
transport freight on the Upper Mississippi River find mayflies to be a nav-
igation hazard. . . . Visibility is greatly reduced by the mass of insects in
the searchlight beams. The crushed insects render the decks, ladders and
equipment of the boats slippery and dangerous. The towboats must of ne-
cessity be completely hosed off with water after each encounter with a
large swarm of mayflies.”
Caddisflies have created serious nuisance and health problems at Keo-
kuk, Iowa (Fremling, 1960). They swarm around the city lights during
most of the summer and often blanket store windows. Masses of the in-
sects dart into the faces of passersby, flutter under their eye glasses and
fly down open-necked clothing. The minute setae that are dislodged from
the wings and bodies of the caddisfiies cause swelling and soreness in the
eyes of hypersensitive individuals. Many Keokuk residents have become
hypersensitive to caddisfly emanations and have developed typical hay fe-
ver symptoms. Fremling goes on to say that it is inadvisable to paint
houses along the river bluff during the caddisfly season, and outdooor
lighting is impractical. Spider webs become pendulous with captured cad-
disflies, making the riverside homes unsightly. Allergic reactions to cad-
disflies in the Fort Erie area have been reported by Parlato (1929, 1930.
1932, 1934), and byOsgood (1934, l957a, 195Th).
Mosquitoes are implicated in the transmission of parasitic and other
diseases. Elephantiasis, characterized by massive glandular swelling, is a
disease that occurs commonly among the people of Puerto Rico (Faust.
1939). The disease is caused by filarial worms, Wuchereria bancrofti
which are slender nematode parasites that invade the circulatory and lym-
phatic systems, muscles, connective tissues or serous cavities of verte-
brates. Wuchereria bancro f f1 are carried by 41 species of mosquitoes.
The three principal arthropod-borne viruses in the United States are
western equine, eastern equine and St. Louis encephalitis (Hess and Hol-
den, 1958). Western equine and St. Louis encephalitis occur primarily in
the 22 Western States, whereas eastern equine encephalitis occurs primar-
ily in the Atlantic and Gulf coast States. Birds serve as natural hosts, and
mosquitoes as vectors, for all three viruses. Man is an accidcntal host, but
clinical disease in man is produced by all three viruses.
Mosquitoes, as a nuisance, inflict financial loss in various ways. In
some sections they restrict the vacation season by inflicting painful bites,
with subsequent loss of patronage to resort establisments. They attack do-
mestic animals and fowl and, when bites are inflicted in large numbers.
cause loss of weight and health. It has been estimated that 500 mosqui-
toes will draw ‘. of a pint of blood per day from an exposed animal
(Ross, 1947). Sometimes mosquitoes become so abundant as to intcrferc
with or stop work by man, with a consequent loss of labor and accom-

I Woods 6 Carp.t
7 Floating MM
8 Floating 1..!
2 Coppice
3 Leafy Erect
4 Flaxuous
5 Naked Erect
9 Submerged
10 Pleuston
— — — — — — — — _____
Maximum Mosquito-Control Elevation — Bsic clearing Line ____
Minimum Mosquito-Control Elevation
Figure 77. Generalized contour distribution of basic plant types on the shoreline of a main-river reservoir (from Bishop and Hollis, 1947).

plishments. Mosquitoes are among the worst nuisances of the out-of-doors
and prevent enjoyment of recreational facilities by many people seeking
exercise and relaxation.
Most mosquitoes breed in still water; small ponds and poois of many
types, the shallow edges of lakes, and the still water in shallow, dense,
weed beds along the edges of streams and lakes, and accumulated algal
masses serve as ideal habitats. They prefer areas with little wave action,
an abundant cover of aquatic vegetation, an abundant food in the form of
humus or other organic matter on the bottom, and surface floating parti-
cles of microorganisms. The mosquito production of a lake or reservoir
appears to be directly proportional to the amount of intersection line be-
tween plants (or flotage) and the water surface. Likewise, the relative
mosquito production potential of different plant types is in direct propor-
tion to their relative amount of intersection line per unit area of water
surface, other factors being equal. Bishop and Hollis (1947) found a dif-
ference in the relative intersection values among the various types of
aquatic vegetation (figs. 77 and 78). For a given plant species the in-
tersection value, and therefore the mosquito production potential, varies
according to the percentage of vegetation cover occurring at the water sur
face. The highest intersection values are usually produced with an inter-
mediate cover; low intersection values may be associated with either low
or high covers.
The attacks on man and other animals by blackflies, Sinwijuni spp.. are
described by Belding (1942). The bite, at first painless except for a slight
prickling sensation, later produces an ulcer-like sore that is due to the sal-
ivary toxin. In susceptible individuals there may be marked inflammation,
local swelling, and general incapacity. Exposed portions of the body such
as head, neck and legs are most frequently attacked. The flies also have
the havit of crawling beneath the clothing. They are a pest to fishermen
and woodsmen and may incapacitate both man and animal. Large num-
bers of cattle, horses and other domestic animals have perished from the
depredations of these flies in Europe and America.
Otto and Bartley (1965) described problems caused by blackflies in ir-
rigation canals as follows: Pupal encasements create extensive areas of
roughened surfaces that increase resistance to waterfiow in canals. In its
life history. the adult fly deposits eggs on vegetation or other solid sub-
strate just under the surface of swift water, especially where the current
is broken. Overwintering sometimes occurs in the egg state. The eggs
hatch below the water surface to produce larvae, which attach themselves
to a solid submerged substrate. The larval stage may last from 2 to 6
weeks. During the last stage of development, the larvae construct silken
cocoons in which the insects develop into pupae, a growth stage preced-
ing development and emergence of the adult. The cocoons are firmly
cemented to the substrate and may be in the shape of a pocket. slipper.
or vase. This is the growth stage that creates roughened surfaces on a

x LU
LU (9
::::: 0..
::::::. C l)
::::: L&.
— ... — —
U) ____ ___
Relative Intersection Values
C -)
I d
I—_____ ___
Figure 78. Anopheles quadrimaculatus Say production potentials of basic plant types (from Bishop and Hollis, 1947).

canal lining. The pupae are oval and enlarged at the upper end, and are
yellow to red-brown in color. They have small abdominal hooks by which
they remain attached to the cocoon. The pupal stage usually lasts from
2 to 8 days prior to emergence of the flying adult. The pupal cases gen-
erally are quite persistent following emergence of the adult insects, and
often require mechanical removal from canal linings.
Deer flies and horse flies. Chrysops spp. are of medical importance not
only as aggressive bloodsucking pests. but also because certain species
transmit diseases to man and animals. As mechanical vectors they may
carry pathogenic organisms on their mouth parts and bodies. Chrysops
discalis Williston, the western deer fly, can transfer tularemia, Pasteurella
tularensis to both man and animals and remains infective for at least 2
weeks (Belding. 1942). Occasionally anthrax germs also are carried on
the beaks of horse flies and deer flies between diseased and healthy ani-
mals and sometimes to man. Deer flies often attack man.
Leeches abound in warm, protected shallow water where there is little
wave action and where plants, stones. and debris offer concealment. They
are chiefly nocturnal in their activities and reamin hidden under stones
and vegetation in daylight. The majority of specimens are found from the
water’s edge to a depth of approximately 6 feet. Leeches require sub-
strates to which they can adhere and consequently are rare on pure mud
or clay bottoms. Some species persist in intermittent ponds by burrowing
into the mud bottom where they construct a small mucous-lined cell in
which they live. Leeches are dormant in winter, burying themselves in the
upper part of the bottom material just below the frostline.
Any disturbance of the water, such as is caused by a wading animal, at-
tracts the leeches partly because of the mechanical disturbance that stimu-
lates the tactile organs and partly because of the animal emanations that
stimulate the organs of chemical sense. Thus, leeches are attracted by
bathers and tend to congregate and remain about the docks and stones of
the bathing area. They are strong and rapid swimmers and can invade a
particular area from other sections of the lake. They are most active at
maximum water temperatures. and the period of greatest prevalence in
the bathing area corresponds with that of maximum water temperature
in August.
Ingram (1959) discussed nuisances caused by the Asiatic clam. Car-
bicula flurninea (WilIer) in California. “In 1953 C. S. Hale. general
manager of he Coachella \ T alley County Water District, Coaehella, Calif..
stated in correspondence that an aparently serious infestation of Corbi-
cula fluminea had developed in the water district’s underground distribu-
tion system. Irrigation water is taken from the Colorado River at imperial
Dam, transported through 123 miles of open canal, and distributed
through approximaely 500 miles of underground pipe. Accumulation of
live clams and clamshells causes serious impairment of water delivery at
farmers’ turnout valves, at ends of laterals, and in irrigation sprinkler sys-

- a.
S i 4
I. 4
£ .tj.: ‘. • . - I;b .q
4 ” ‘ :
‘S_•’_ - S_ • ••
— -‘ .. “ . . . - 4
. —;- -
• - r 44;
‘ -S. -, . - ,
• • . ‘

.‘ flt*: :. .
4 lq•’ S
- S
- ‘ -
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L , .iç - . .
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w- ‘
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- -
I 5555 55. 5
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4 — ‘5
Figure 79. Interim Canal, California, with Asiatis clams completely covering canal bed.

tems. Clams were appearing in irrigation water in Riverside County and
Imperial Valley distribution systems.
The Asiatic clam has caused significant problems of operation and
maintenance in the South Bay Aqueduct, Calif.. by reducing the cross sec-
tional area of the Interim Canal.* The clams contributed to silt buildup in
two ways: by continually moving the top of the bottom sediments and
covering any material that settled out, thus holding the settled material on
the bottom of the canal, and by removing suspended solids from the water
through filtration and depositing the solids on the canal bed combined
with a proteinaceous slime that does not readily go back into suspension.
At one station in the canal the density of the clam population ranged be-
tween 380 and 1.500 per square foot. The highest density found in the
South Bay Aqueduct was 5.635 live darns per square foot (figs. 79 and
Figure 80. Closeup of undisturbed canal bed, Interim Canal, California, with
multitudes of Asiatic clams.
* Morgester. J. J. 1967. Water Quality and Biologic Conditions South Bay Aque-
duct, 1962—1966. State of California, The Resources Agency, Dep. rtment of Water

‘U J LTIMATE control of nuisance aquatic organisms can be accom-
plished only by drastic alteration of the basic cause(s) of the prob-
1cm. Generally, the introduction of organic materials and inorganic nu-
trients into the Nation’s waterways are chiefly responsible for the
explosion of an aquatic plant or animal populaticn into the nuisance cate-
gory. Drainage from fertilized lands, inadequately treated domestic or in-
dustrial wastc discharges, street and storm drainages, and municipal and
private refuse dumps each contributes its abundant share to the depreda-
tion of the receiving water; each must be adequately treated or controlled
if this Nation’s waters are to be used to the extent to which they have
been projected.
The maintenance concept must be considered by all users of streams,
lakes, or reservoirs. The waterfront is an aquatic extension of the sur-
rounding land. To achieve the most lasting beauty, it must be maintained
periodically in a fashion similar to that of the adjoining lawn or the abut-
ting parkway; otherwise nuisances and unsightliness will prevail. Controls
developed to cure water ills are not singular operations. The mechanism
triggering nuisance development is usually such that it will reestablish it-
self another year. Thus. continuous surveillance as well as maintenance
are necessary in water management.
Methods have been developed and perfected that effect an adequate
temporary reduction and control of plant nuisances under a number of
circumstances. Controls may be either mechanical or chemical, and their
selection and use depend upon the nature and scope of the problem, the
type and extent of the control desired and comparative costs. Mechanical
controls are limited principally to rooted aquatic vegetation, whereas
chemical controls have been developed for algae, rooted aquatic vegeta-
tion, and other nuisance organisms. Every control has its limitations,
based upon the dimensions of the area to be treated; these limitations are
broad and do not exclude overall use of the water. Controls that are rec-

ommended most generally have not been shown to seriously disrupt gen-
eral lake ecology.
Chemical Usage
As reported in Weeds Trees and Turf,* the use of chemicals to control
excessive growths of algae and aquatic weeds in lakes has become more
widespread in Wisconsin in recent years. Dr. M. Starr Nichols, researcher
with the University of Wisconsin ’s departments of agricultural and civil
engineering is quoted as stating that from 1950 to 1958, 81 Wisconsin
lakes received treatments of about 78,000 pounds of sodium arsenite per
year, while 41 lakes were treated with 671,964 pounds of copper sulfate.
During the past several years, the number of lakes chemically treated has
continued to grow. In 1966, 150 lakes received the following treatments:
48 with copper sulfate for algal control; 16 with copper sulfate and cop-
per carbonate for swimmefs itch control; 38 with sodium arsenite for
submersed weed control; 37 with organic chemicals such as diquat and
2,4-D for weed control. Sixteen of those lakes needed more than one
treatment; one lake required 1 3 treatments.
The British Columbia Research Council (1967) did an extensive inves-
tigation on the market for algicides. The present maximum market, predi-
cated on probable needs rather than actual usage, and the probable
growth rates were estimated as follows:
irrigation waters—600 tons per year, increasing by 2.5 percent per
farm ponds—5,000 tons per year, increasing by 3 percent per year
recreational waters—5,000 tons per year, increasing by 5 percent
per year
Red Tide—several hundreds of tons, unpredictable
swimming pools—up to 300 tons per year, increasing by 10 percent
per year
municipal water supplies—i 5.000 tons per year, increasing by 3
percent per year
industrial waters—probably small.
The study further concluded that copper compounds, principally copper
sulfate, would remain dominant in the large-scale treaments of irrigational
and recreational waters, but would likely lose out to the more expen-
sive chemical toxicants in the intermediate-scale market, unless a longer
lasting copper algicide can be found that would allow a once-a-season
treatment. Copper compounds were not considered to be serious competi-
tors in the small-scale markets of swimming pools and industrial cooling
ponds where fast acting bactericides are necessary and the cost per pound
of the applied chemical is of less importance.
* Vol. 8, No. 3, p. 3 (March 1969)

From the standpoint of nutrient removal, harvesting the aquatic crops
annually would be advantageous. The economics of present methods of
harvesting and the scope of the problem, however, necessitate a critical
appraisal of benefits versus costs. The expected standing crop of algae ap-
proaches 2 tons per acre (wet weight) and would be expected to contain
15 pounds of nitrogen and 1.5 pounds of phosphorus. Submerged aquatic
plants would be expected to approach at least 7 tons per acre (wet
weight) and contain 32 pounds of nitrogen and 3.2 pounds of phospho-
rus. Values may be higher under severe nuisance conditions.
Some methods and equipment used for the physical and mechanical re-
moval of water weeds are reservoir drawdown and drying, burning,
hand-pulling, hand-cutting, hand-raking, chain-dragging, hand-operated
underwater weed saws, and power-driven underwater weed cutting and
weed removal units. The type of control employed depends on the field
situation, the extent of control desired, and the labor and cost involved.
The mechanical harvesting of aquatic weeds involves equipment capable
of handling large tonnage of materials (fig. 81). Mechanical controls are
especially valuable to reclaim shallow nuisance areas.
Chemical control measures to be employed depend upon the type of
nuisance and local conditions. A good algicide or herbicide must: (1) Be
reasonably safe to use; (2) kill the specific nuisance plant or plants; (3)
be nontoxic to fish, fishfood organisms and terrestrial animals at the
plant-killing concentration; (4) not prove seriously harmful to the ecology
of the general aquatic area; (5) be safe for water contact by humans
or animals, or provide suitable safeguards during the unsafe period; and
(6) be of reasonable cost. Some of these factors assume added signifi-
cance when based on the physical dimensions of a particular control oper-
ation. What might be suitable from both a cost and toxicity standpoint in
a control program for a pond might not be feasible in a control program
for specific areas on a large body of water.
For the chemical control of algae it may be necessary to know only the
acreage of water requiring treatment and the methyl orange alkalinity of
the water. For the chemical treatment of many aquatic pests, it is neces-
sary to know the volume of water receiving treatment. A formula is used
to ascertain the amount of chemical to apply to a given area:
Length (ft.) >< Width (ft.) >< Average Depth (ft.)
x 62.4 (wgt. of a cu. ft. of water)
I ,000,000
pounds of chemical (active ingredient) needed to give a concentration of
1 mg./l. This, multiplied by the required chemical concentration in milli-

r i
— I
Figure 81. Mechanical weed cutting and removal.
grams per liter tor treatment equals the pounds of chemical needed for
the measured area. Various formulations may be purchased. For example.
a formulation containing 2 pounds of active ingredient per gallon would
necessitate dividing the pounds of chemical by 2 to arrive at the gallons of
commercial formulation required to control the nuisance. A dosage chart
is often convenient (fig. 82).
From 1904 (Moore and Kellerman. 1904) to the present, the chemical
that has most nearly met specifications for the control of algae has been
copper sulfate (blue vitriol). Despite its extensive usage. copper sulphate
has shortcomings in that it may. in excessive concentrations poison fish
and other aquatic life, it may accumulate in bottom muds as an insoluble
compound following extensive usage. and it is corrosive to paint and
Definite dosages of copper sulfate for the control of various types of al-
gae were first prescribed by Moore and Kellerman (1905); these have
been reprinted extensively in tabular form with specific dosages for some
70 organisms (Hale. 1954). The practical application of such a table is
limited, however, because of the many variables encountered in nature.
Because the solubilitv of copper in water is influenced by pH and aikal-
initv. as well as temperature. the dosage required for control depends
upon the chemistry of the water itself, as well as on the susceptibility of
particular organisms to the copper. Thus, rather arbitrary dosage rates
have l’ een succesfullv used. especially in the midwestern States (Bartsch.
1954: \lackenthun. 1958). Since a total alkalinity of 40.0 mg./I seems to
- — - ,.-- -,

U i
0 .
U i
Figure 82. Chemical Dosage Chart. To achieve a chemical concentration of 1
mg./l in water having an average depth of 8 feet requires 10 pounds of the
active chemical for an area 200 feet by 100 feet, or 21.8 pounds per acre.
be a natural separation point between soft and hard waters (Moyle, 1949)
those lakes that have a total methyl orange alkalinity of 40 mg./1 or
greater are treated with blue vitriol (commercial copper sulfate) at a rate
of 1 mg./l (CuSO 4 • 5H O) for the upper 2 feet of water regardless of
actual depth. On an acreage basis, the concentration would amount to 5.4
0 2 4 6 8

pounds of commercial copper sulfate per surface acre. The 2-foot depth
has been determined to be about the maximum effective range of a surface
application of copper sulfate in such water, since algae will be killed with
increasing depth only if the rate of downward diffusion exceeds the rate of
copper precipitation. The algae killed by such a treatment are those that
are suspended near the water surface and occur commonly as blooms in
calm weather. For lakes with a total methyl orange alkalinity below 40
mg./l, a concentration of 0.3 mg./l commercial copper sulfate for the total
volume of water has been recommended. This is comparable to 0.9
pounds of copper sulfate per acre-foot of water. Jt is obvious that when a
low-alkalinity lake has an average depth of about 6 feet, the dosage would
be about the same as in a high-alkalinity lake having the same area. When
lesser average depths are involved, a greater concentration of chemical re-
sults in the high-alkalinity lakes. This apparent paradox would be even
more striking were it not for the fact that in low-alkalinity lakes the algae
frequently are of the filamentous types that may lie at the bottom and,
therefore, the entire volume of water must be calculated to insure that a
sufficient concentration of the chemical reaches the algae to effect a kill.
In high-alkalinity lakes, algae frequently are planktonie and tend to con-
centrate near the surface, which is the only stratum in which appreciable
concentrations of soluble copper can be produced. Certainly, when copper
sulfate is used as the algicide. the best and most lasting control will result
when the lake water has a total alkalinity around 50 mg./l or less.
Algal control treatments can be marginal or complete, the type applied
to a given body of water must be determined by the size, shape, and rela-
tive fertility of the water, and the estimated cost of the project. Complete
treatment in which the calculated amount of copper sulfate is systemati-
cally applied over the entire surface area is the most satisfactory. it in-
sures that a major portion of the total algal population is eliminated at
one time, and that a longer recovery period is required before an algal
bloom condition recurs. The interval between necessary treatments will be
directly correlated with climatological conditions and the available nu-
trients utilized by the remaining algal cells that are not killed as a result
of chemical application. One to three complete treatments per season may
be sufficient to give reasonable control.
Marginal treatment, on the other hand, is a method designed to obtain
temporary relief in a restricted area where more extensive activity is not
feasible or financially possible. in this procedure a strip. 200 to 400 feet
wide, lying parallel with the shore, and all protected bays are sprayed in
the same manner as in complete treatment. No other part of the area is
treated even though many algae may be present. As a result of treatment.
the algal population and the intensity of odors along the periphery of the
lake are reduced. The duration of freedom from the algal nuisance follow-
ing marginal treatment is dependent upon the density of the algal popula-
tion in the center of the lake and its ability to infiltrate the treated area

through the action of wind, waves, and currents. Any marginal control
operation should definitely be considered on a periodic repeat basis. If
fertility is not excessive, large bodies of water might gain enough relief
from marginal treatment to warrant this type of control; however, it prob-
ably would be a waste of money for a large, fertile lake that is long and
narrow and subject to considerable wind and wave action. In the latter
case, complete treatment might be the only present answer, the cost of
which might be prohibitive.
Copper sulfate may be applied in a variety of ways: bag-dragging, dry
feeding (Monie, 1956), liquid spray (Mackenthun, 1958), and airplane
application of either dry or wet material. Because rapid and uniform dis-
tribution of the algicide is essential, the size and scope of the problem de-
termine to some extent the method employed. In general, liquid spraying
systems operated from a boat or barge have been most widely used (figs.
83 and 84). Because copper sulfate is a highly corrosive chemical, mate-
rials that are used in the construction of spraying equipment should be re-
sistant to its corrosive nature.
Other methods of distributing copper sulfate have been devised; one of
these is to blow a chemical dust rather than use a slurry or solution
(Anon., 1965). The principal advantage of the blower-type machine is
the ability to treat large surface areas rapidly with a light dosing of mate-
The blower, operating at 3,000 to 3,500 r.p.m., has the tendency to
grind the commercial-grade CuSO 4 snow into smaller particles. These
Figure 83. Equipment design for algal control. Small blue vitriol crystals are
placed over perforated drum in chemical solution tank.

small particles are blown into the air, and wind currents assist in spread-
ing them over the surface f the water.
Certain disadvantages are found in the blower-type machines. For ex-
ample, the larger machines are heavy enough to reduce the permissive
load 1 chemical in the boat; and two or more men are required to trans-
port the units in and out of the watercraft. The machines also need con-
tinual adjustment by a trainer operator. such as a contract applicator, to
maintain a constant feed and to obtain an even distribution of copper. An
excessive rate of feed may clog the discharge spout. Use of these blower-
type machines is dependent upon the wind for distribution of chemical,
and with shifting winds the boat crew, as well as the reservoir may be
dusted with the material. There is always the loss üf varying amounts of
copper sulfate dust that is carried away b the wind and then settles upon
the above-water shoreline of the reservoir.
Helicopters have also been used in chemical distribution (Rosenberg,
1964). The East Bay Water Co.. Oakland. Calif., found that a more
efficient treatment could be obtained with a helicopter and that. as a re-
sult, fewer treatments were required per season for a particular reservoir.
The cost of chemical distribution was slightly more h helicopter than by
boat. Helicopter rental averaged $0.80 per acre. DeCo ta and Laverty
(1964). in commenting on this treatment, stated that it was the district’s
experience that an ounce of copper sulfate properly applied at the reser-
voir was worth a pound of activated carbon added at the filter plant to
correct a problem after it had arisen.
Figure 84. Liquid spray distribution OT cnemicai D smaii ouai.

Algal control measures should be undertaken before the maximum de-
velopment of the algal bloom. If, for some reason, a given area is not
treated until the algal population has become dense, or a floating mat has
formed, judgment must be used to determine the area that should receive
treatment at any given time, lest sufficient organic matter is killed to result
in oxygen removal when decomposing. It is good practice to subdivide the
total area into sections and control the nuisance in one section at a lime.
Other sections may be treated after an interval of 7 to 10 days to ensure
that sufficient dissolved oxygen is present to satisfy the demands of the
decomposing algae.
Particular algal species often require particular chemical application
measures and sometimes particular algicides. For example, the Ontario
Water Resources Commission (Anon., 1959), in its examination of con-
trol measures for Cladophora in Lake Ontario, found that copper sulfate
merely retarded growth but Aqualin at 5 p.p.m. cleared the test plots of
C/ado phora and they remained clear for 4 weeks during which observa-
tions were taken. In inland lakes and ponds, Diquat has been recom-
mended for Cladophora control along with copper sulfate (Dc Vaney,
A problem often encountered in farm ponds is that of thick yellowish-
green or green scums that form on the pond’s surface. Scum-forming
green algae are Hvdrodictvon, Pithophora, Cladophora, Oedogonium,
Zygnema, Mougeotia, and Spirogyra. The optimum time to control these
growths is in early developmental stages when they first appear on the wa-
ter surface. Using copper sulfate dosages that were discussed earlier, it
may be necessary to spray-treat the area on successive occasions to
achieve control. Care should be exercised to prevent killing too much al-
gae at one time or fish may be killed by a lack of dissolved oxygen when
the algae decompose. Mechanical removal of much of the scum, when
feasible, will do much to enhance the success of the chemical application.
Another algal problem, discussed earlier, is Chara. Chara often is trou-
blesome in high alkalinity (>40 mg./l) ponds and lakes, and in ponds
may render them relatively unproductive of fish. Like the control of pond
scums, Chara control chemicals should be applied early in the season be-
fore portions of the plant begin to decompose, and before the growth has
“rolled” from the bottom. Chara is readily susceptible to copper sulfate
applied at 5.4 pounds per acre, but the chemical must be applied directly
above the growth. The algicide may be introduced through a perforated
“j” pipe that is attached to the discharge side of the chemical distribu-
tion equipment and then lowered to the desired depth for chemical intro-
The British Columbia Research Council (1967) published a compen-
dium of algicides listing active ingredients, application rates, toxicities and
restrictions, and costs for 31 formulations used in farm ponds, irrigation

and drainage canals, recreational lakes, municipal water supplies, swim-
ming pools, and industrial waters.
Vascular Plants
In the control of submersed aquatic plants, it is often desirable to
chemically treat localized areas along the shoreline, such as bathing
beaches and around piers, and to develop channels through weed beds so
that boats will have access to deeper water. Sometimes it is advantageous
to treat an extensive area in an effort to curtail an advancing population
of a weed species, such as Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum
Linnaeus). Best results are obtained when the shoi eline areas are treated
because currents and wave action are usually minimized, and the diffusion
of the chemical can take place only in one direction—into the lake. There
are limitations below which it is usually not feasible to attempt liquid
chemical weed control. The recommended minimum area to be treated is
200 by 200 feet. The treatment of very small areas permits the diffusion
of the chemical on 3 sides, thus reducing the concentration of the chemi-
cal within the area to a point below the toxic level for rooted plants. An
exception to this recommendation might be a small slough, bay, or stag-
nant channel with an area of less than 40,000 square feet. Granular
aquatic herbicides, applied early in the growing season, are often applied
successfully on smaller areas.
For many years. arsenic trioxide as a sodium arsenite solution was used
effectively to control submersed aquatic vegetation (Mackenthun, 1958).
In recent years the trend has been away from those chemicals that are es-
sentially nondegradable to organic herbicides that do not accumulate in
the environment. These herbicidal formulations include the phenoxy com-
pounds such as 2.4-D and silvex. Dalapon. Diquat. Endothall, and others.
Dosage rates and application procedures have been detailed by Surber
(1961), Lawrence (1962), and De Vaney (1968). De Vaney has listed
those herbicides that have been registered in accordance with the Federal
Insecticide, Fungicide. and Rodenticide Act for use in aquatic sites
(table 15). Many of the compounds are available in liquid and granular
formulations, the latter being suitable for broadcasting on the water sur-
face (fig. 85).
A few details should be kept in mind in the application of a chemical.
It has been found advantageous, for example, to divide a large area to be
treated into a convenient number of small subareas and to accurately de-
termine the volume of water each contains. Since the quantity of the
chemical used is proportional to the water volume to be treated, it is a
simple matter to properly adjust the chemical application and evenly dis-
tribute the correct amount of chemical into the subarea. This procedure is
then repeated in successive subareas. Spraying should be initiated at the
shoreline so that fish will not be trapped in shallow water.

Chemical control of aquatic vegetation must currently be regarded as a
temporary remedy although it should last for the season in which it is ap-
plied. Under certain conditions, the removal of a vascular plant popula-
tion may promote the growth of a bottom-dwelling alga such as Chara.
The alga must then be attacked with a suitable algicide.
Biological controls are currently being tested in the control of aquatic
weeds. Preliminary studies on use of grass carp, Ctenopharvngodon ide!-
lus. (Cuvier and Vallenciennes), for aquatic weed control have recently
been completed at Auburn University Agricultural Experiment Station.
When stocked at a rate of 685 per acre, the fish eliminated 12 species of
weeds growing in plastic-lined pools within 6 weeks. In ponds, 3 species
of rooted weeds were significantly reduced or eliminated in 1 month after
being stocked vith 20 to 40 grass carp per acre (Avault, 1965).
Stevenson (1965) reported that early growth of the grass carp at the
Fish Farming Experimental Station, Stuttgart, Ark., compared favorably
with that reported in semi-tropical countries. The average weight at 18
months was 1,816 grams; the length, 50 centimeters. The fish were given
a supplemental ration of commercial fish pellets and cut grass. Observa-
tions of the feeding habits indicate that this carp may not be a strict her-
bivore; it is recommended that a thorough study be made before the fish
is released in natural waters. Stevenson calls it the most efficient aquatic
Figure 85. Helicopter application of a granular herbicide.

Tab le 15. Herbicides That Have Been Registered in Accordance With
the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act
for Use in Aquatic Sites.
(From DeVaney, 1968)
Acrolein Diquat
Irrigation canals Lakes
Ponds Ponds
Irrigation canals
Amitrole (Not approved for Bureau of Drainage ditches
Sport Fisheries and Wildlife use)
Non crop areas Endothall
Drainage ditches Lakes
Amitrole T (Not approved for Bureau of Irrigation canals
Sport Fisheries and Wildlife use) Drainage ditches
Non crop areas
Drainage ditches Fenac
Marshes Lakes
Ammonium Sulfamate Reservoirs
Around lakes, ponds Drainage ditches and banks
Around potable water reservoirs
Along inflow streams Petroleum Distillate (aromatic)
Irrigation ditches
Drainage ditches
Bromaci l Irrigation, drainage ditches and
Ditch lands banks
Copper Sulfate Lakes
Farm ponds Ponds
Sodium Arsenite (Not approved for
Dalapon Bureau of Sport Fisheries and WildS
Non crop areas life use)
Drainage ditches Lakes
Dichlobeni l
Lakes Sodium TCA
Ponds Non crop areas
Ditch banks (drainage)
Lakes 2, 4-D
Ponds Lakes
Irrigation canals Ponds
2, 4, 5 -1
plant-eating fish, but cautions that it might become another carp problem
if introduced.
Rapid advances are also being made in research on the control of
marsh weeds and other aquatic forms that project above the water sur-
face. Two factors explain the growing interest in the control of these
weeds: one is the advent of new and better herbicides for the purpose;
the other is the increasingly critical situation facing the Nation’s water-
fowl hunting resource-—a sport on which 2 million Americans spend
millions annually. Already more than half of the country’s original 125

million acres of wetlands have been spoiled for waterfowl use. As the
national population approaches the 200-million mark, more and more
of the places where ducks feed, breed, and are hunted will have to be
converted to the needs of advancing civilization. In other words, pros-
pects are for fewer hunting places and fewer ducks for a large number of
To help offset this trend, it is important to make the best use of avail-
able waterfowl habitat. Thousands of poor or fair areas in the United
States can be made more attractive for ducks and duck hunters by replac-
ing marsh weeds with plants that furnish food or cover for waterfowl.
Commonly, the costs involved are not prohibitive (Martin et al., 1957).
In florida recently, water hyacinths and other pest plants were cleared
from 20,000 acres of ponds and lakes by the Game and Fresh Water Fish
Commission. Numerous other programs, both large and small, are being
waged against phragmites, cattails, waterchestnut, and other marsh weeds
in various States. In the Federal refuge system, more than 2,000 acres of
marshlands are treated with herbicides annually to make them more pro-
ductive for waterfowl.
Martin et al., discussed vegetation control by waterlevel management,
mechanical control by bulldozing, burning, and the use of herbicides such
as 2,4-D, 2,4,5-T, ammonium suiphamate, Dalapon, Kuron, and others.
Specific recommendations for chemical control of particular marsh plants
were given.
Problems have arisen in the chemical control of certain animal pests.
Clear Lake, Calif., was treated in September 1949, with a chlorinated
hydrocarbon insecticide DDI) (dichiorodiphenyl dichioroethane) at a
concentration of 1 part of active insecticide to 70 million parts of water to
control the Clear Lake gnat. It was determined that a 99-percent kill of
larvae resulted. A second chemical application was necessary in 1954 and
a third in 3957. These latter applications were calculated to produce a
concentration of one part in 50 million parts of water. Following both the
1954 and 1957 applications, 75 to 100 western grebs were found dead
along the lake shore. Results of chemical analysis of the fatty tissue from
the grebes in 1958 indicated DDD was present at the unusally high con-
centration of 1,600 p.p.m. (Hunt and Bischoff, 1960). The amount of
DDD found during Mar. 1958, in the visceral fat of the brown bullhead
ranged from 40 to 2,500 p.p.m. To prevent the possibility of increasing
the present hazard of DDD poisoning of wildlife, Clear Lake will receive
no further treatment with DDD.
In laboratory tests to control chemically other midge larvae, Hilsenhoff
(1959) screened 16 commercially available organophosphate insecticides
to determine their relative toxicity. Dipterex and malathion incorporated
into granules produced an 80-percent mortality of the larve at concentra-

tions of 0.1 pound per acre of the technical material. These insecticides
have a low toxicity to fishes, waterfowl and mammals. Field tests on Lake
Winnebago, Wis., with malathion granules, however, did not prove con-
clusive at low concentrations; the feasibility of chemical control on a large
body of water with a nonaccumulative insecticide is questionable.
Various species of midges have become established as significant nuis-
ance problems in San Mateo County and many other suburban areas
throughout California (Whitsel et al., 1 963). Midge production at all sta-
lions in a study of the problem area, was preceded by a pronounced in-
crease in accumulated organic matter. Water known to be polluted with
sewage wastes was found to have over 1 .1 00 larve per square foot of
substrate. Man-made drainageways were found to produce greater midge
infestations than natural drainage creeks. Localized chemical applications
were reported to be successful in control practices. “Chemical control by
granular Baytex 0.1 and 0.2 pound per acre provided fairly effective re-
duction of Chironornus larvae in impounded and slowly moving waters,
with no harm to mosquito fish. Ganthzisia affinis. Granular dieldrin
showed promising control in slowly moving waters, with little harm to
Gambusia and aquatic invertebrates at 0.5 pound per acre.” Patterson
and von Windeguth (1964) described Baytex as one of the most promis-
ing chemicals for use as a larvicide against chironomid midges. In labora-
tot-v experiments, they found that a granular formulation at the recom-
mended larvicidal rates exhibited no overt toxic effects on fresh water
copepods. ostracods. hydra, annelid worms, snails, clams or fish over a
4-month period. There was indication that Baytex was very toxic to
midge larvae and to Cladocera.
In a recent study of the biology of midges in Lake Winnebago. Wis.
(Hilsenhoff 1966) found that eggs of Chironoinus plumosus (Linnaeus)
are laid on the lake surface in masses averaging 1 .676 eggs. These masses
absorb water, swell, and sink to the lake bottom, where the eggs hatch in
3 to 14 days. Larval stages range from 1 .40-mm., colorless, first instars to
30-mm. dark red, fourth instars. The newly hatched first instars are free-
swimming and positively phototrophic. All instars, except perhaps the
first, construct U-shaped tubes in the bottom mud and. at temperatures
above 50 C.. feed indiscriminately by “filter feeding.” Female larvae must
weigh 60 mg. or more to pupate, but male larvae will pupate when the)’
weigh 48 to 56 mg. Emergence may occur at any hour, day or night, but
is most prevalent just before sunset. Newly emerged flies fly weakly with
the wind, eventually accumulating on the lee shore. Swarms of males form
about 1 hour before sunrise and disperse about 1 hour after sunset in re-
sponse to light. The swarms. typically containing several thousand flies.
orient over objects that contrast with the background. Females fly into the
swarms for mating, which occurs most commonly in the early morning.
Mated females, after a preoviposition period of 1½ to 5 days, fly out over
the lake to oviposit, extruding their egg masses onto their hind legs while

in flight; oviposition occurs commonly at all hours of day or night. The
larvae are eaten by many fish and by I species of leech, are parasitized by
a microsporidian, and are occasionally killed by unknown diseases. There
are normally 2 generations a year in Lake Winnebago. Overwintering
fourth-instar larvae pupate and emerge during mid-May; their progeny
emerge from mid-July to early September. Rate of development and time
of emergence are dependent on mud temperatures. If unknown stimuli
necessary for pupation are absent, a generation may be delayed or en-
tirely missed.
Moore (1 923) describes methods of leech control through freezing in
their winter quarters. As water temperatures fall with the onset of winter,
leeches become more and more sluggish and finally bury themselves in the
mud or beneath stones on the bottom of shallow water. Leeches are
readily killed by exposure to a temperature of 20° F. for a few hours.
When the first thin ice starts to form and it is certain that the water
temperature has attained its minimum, Moore recommends that the
water be drawn off as rapidly as possible until the water level is lowered
4 feet . and that this level he maintained for at least 5 or 6 weeks during
the coldest part of the winter. He reasons that, under these circum-
stances. the exposed flats would be frozen hard to a considerable depth.
and temperatures would be well below the fatal minimum for the im-
prisoned leeches. This method of control was effective in Carr Pond.
Palisades interstate Park near New York City. Pennak (1953) states
that leeches ma be temporarily controlled in localized bathing beach
areas by applying 100 pounds of powdered lime per acre per day in the
In general. chemical controls have not proved successful, although
chemicals such as copper sulfate will kill leeches that are exposed to it.
The measures employed in snail control have been used with some suc-
cess in leech control, Weekly distribution of a slurry composed of 10
pounds of copper sulfate and 5 pounds of copper carbonate or lime per
acre of bathing area has shown some success. Chelated copper com-
pounds applied marginally as a spray at concentrations sublethal to fish
have also been of value.
Most states have laws or regulations to regulate specifically the use of
pesticides to control nuisances in aquatic habitats. Some States regulate
only the commercial applicators: others regulate all chemical users. Before
chemicals are applied to control any aquatic pest, it is well to cheek with
the appropriate state authority to ascertain the legality of the proposed
chemical application.
The application of a chemical to water involves certain hazards that
must be understood and against which public rights must be protected.
Factors that must be considered are the short- and long-range toxicity to

all aquatic life; the deposition and possible accumulation of the chemical
upon the lake bottom, and the subsequent reaction upon the community
of bottom organisms; the impact resulting from the destruction of too
much biological growth at one time; and the possible disturbance or im-
pairment of the general aquatic environment.
De Vaney (1968) cites the basic policy of the Department of the Inte-
nor with respect to the use of pesticides as follows:
‘It is essential that all pesticides, herbicides, and related chemicals
be applied in a manner fully consistent with the protection of the en-
tire environment. Any contemplated use of these chemicals must
take into account both known and possible environmental effect. The
guiding rule for the Department shall be that where there is a rea-
sonable doubt regarding the environmental effects of the use of a
given pesticide. herbicide, or other chemical, no use should be

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Sq uare
Tria ngle
Circle—Diameter x 3.1416
Micromoles per liter......
Millimoles per liter
Micromoles per microliter.
Millimoles per square meter
X 32x 10-s
>< 32
x 32x 10
x 2848 x 10-
= Milligrams per liter.
= Milligrams per liter
= Milligrams per liter
= Pounds per acre.
Length (ft.) X Width (ft.) X Average Depth (ft.) X 62.4 ><
ppm X 10 = Pounds of active Material Needed.
Square meters
Square feet
Gallons per minute ,.
Cubic feet per second
Million gallons per day
Cubic feet per second
x 6 M B
X 3.281
X 43.560
x 10.76
X 929X10- 4
x 1337 x 10—i
x 7.48
>< 2.228 >< 10—s
x 448.8
x 1.547
x 6463 X 10—
= Feet.
= Feet.
= Square feet.
= Square feet.
= Square meters.
= Cubic feet.
= Gallons.
= Cubic feet per second.
= Gallons per minute.
= Cubic feet per second.
= Million gallons per day.
Square Meters
Grams per square meter
Kilograms per hectare
Milligrams per square centimeter.
Milligrams per cubic meter
>< 2.471
X 2.471>< 10—
X 4047
X 43,560
X 325,851
>< 8.922
X 0.8922
>< 89.22
= Acres.
= Acres.
= Square meters
= Square feet.
= Gallons.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre-toot
2.72x 10
—Square of the diameter x 0.7854.
—Length of the base X height.
—Square of the radius X 3.1416 x 4.
—Square the length of one side.
—Add the two parallel sides >< height ÷ 2.
—Base x height ÷ 2.
Desired Concentration in
Speed of Boat (feet per hour) x Width of Spray Pattern (feet)>< Depth of Calculated
Treatment (feet) x 62.4 x Desired Concentration in ppm X 10 = Pounds of Active
Material Needed Per Hour.

Acre-feet. ..
Cubic feet...,,
Gallons per minute
Ga llons
Cubic feet per second
Cubic feet per second
Gallons per minute
Million gallons per day
Parts per million .
x 325,851
>( 7.48
x 2642 x 1O—
x 1198 x 10—i
x 8.345
x 1337 x 10—
X 231
x 3.785
x 6463 x 10—
X 448.8
x 2.228x 10
>( 1.547
x 8.345
= Gallons.
= Gallons.
= Gallons of water.
= Gallons per day.
= Pounds of water.
= Cubic feet.
= Cubic inches.
= Million gallons per day.
= Gallons per minute.
= Cubic feet per second.
= Cubic feet per second.
Pounds per million
Statute Miles
Nautical Miles Per Hour.
x 6214 x 10-i
x 1.15
)< 1.609
)< 1.0
= Miles.
= Nautical miles.
= Kilometers.
microgram atoms phosphorus per gram (pg-atP/g) 31 parts per million phosphorus
microgram atoms phosphorus per liter ( g-atP/1) = 31 parts per billion phosphorus
phosphorus pentoxide (P0;.) X 0.436 = phosphorus (P) equiv.
phosphate (P0 4 ))< 0.326 = phosphorus (P) equiv.
Milligrams per liter
Grams per liter
Micrograms per liter....
Micrograms per gram.
Cubic centimeters per liter
Milligrams per gram....
Cubic millimeters per liter. .
>< 1000
)< 1.0
x 1.4545
x 10
>< 10
= Parts per million.
= Parts per million.
= Parts per million.
= Parts per mil ion.
= Parts per million.
= Parts per million.
= Parts per million
= Parts per million
= Pounds per million
Cubic microns per milliliter
Parts per million
x 8.345

Persulf ate
& Coloriaetry
Persuif ate
& Colorimetry
Soluble Kydrolyzable
6 OrthophosphAte
Figure 86. Analytical Scheme for differentiation of phosphorus forms. (From FWPCA
Official Interim Methods for Chemical Analysis of Surface Waters, September 1968.)
— 1

NITRATE (NO 3 ) )< 0.226 = nitrogen (N) equiv.
Milligrams per square meter...... X 8922
Grams per square meter X 8.922
Kilograms per hectare x 0.8922
Milligrams per square centimeter... )< 89.22
Milligrams per liter >< 2.72
Milligrams per cubic meter )< 2.72>< 10
Micrograms per square meter. ... X 8.92 X 106
Acre-feet of water >( 2.7x 106
Gallonsofwater X 8.345
Parts Per Million X Cubic Feet Per Second X 5.4
(Gallons per minute x 2.228 X 10 = Cubic feet
Parts per million X 8.34 x gallons per day x 10
(Gallons per minute x 1440 = Gal lons per day).
Areal standard units = 2O, X 2012 = 4 OOp
Cubic standard units = 20, X 20 M X 2012 = 8000w
Cubic standard units x 8 X 10 = parts per million by volume
Cone —Square the radius of the base x 3.1416 X herght ÷ 3.
Cube —Cube the length of one edge.
Cylinder —Square the radius of the base X 3.1415 x height.
Pyramid —Area of the base X height ÷ 3.
Sphere —Cube the radius x 3.1416 x 4 ÷ 3.
r Pounds per acre.
Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds per acre-foot.
Pounds per acre-foot.
= Pounds per acre.
= Pounds of water.
= Pounds of water.
= Pounds per day.
per second).
Pou nds per day.

Temperatures Centigrade to FahrenheiV
Temp.°C.0 ...J ._ ‘ . 8 9
0...... 32.0 33.8 35.6 37.4 39.2 41.0 42.8 44.6 46.4 48.2
10...... 50.0 51.8 53.6 55.4 57.2 59.0 60 ,8 62.6 64.4 66 ,2
20. . 68.0 69.8 71.6 73.4 75.2 77.0 78.8 80.6 82.4 84.2
30.....,, 86.0 87.8 89.6 91.4 93.2 95.0 96.8 98.6 100.4 102.2
40. . . 104.0 105.8 107.6 109.4 111.2 113.0 114.8 116.6 118.4 120.2
50....... 122.0 123.8 125.6 127.4 129.2 131.0 132.8 134.6 136.4 138.2
9 cTemperatures in degrees Centigrade expressed in left vertical column and in top horizontal row; corresponding temperatures in degrees
Fahrenheit in body of table. (From: Welch, P.S. 1948. Limnological Methods. McGraw-Hill Book Co., Inc.)
Temperatures- Fahrenheit to Centigrade t
Temp.°F. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
*Temperatures in degrees Fahrenheit expressed in left vertical column and in top horizontal row; corresponding temperatures in degrees
Centigrade in body of table. (From: Welch, P .S. 1948. Limnological Methods. McGraw.Hill Book Co., Inc.)

For Preliminary Screening of an Effluent Waste
Percent of Waste Waste adde
in test jar (ml)
d Dilution water
added (ml)
100 2,500
75 1,875
56 1,400
32 800
18 450
5.6 140
1 25
0 0
Total (ml) . . .. .. .. 7.190
Gallons required 2
A Guide to the Selection of Experimental
Concentrations, Based on
Progressive Bisection of Intervals on
a Logarithmic Sca’e
Cot. I Cot. 2 Col. 3
Cot. 4 Cot. 5

To prepare solutions of concentrations indicated
at left, take number of milliliters of stock solu
Concentration Desired tion shown below, and make up to one liter with
suitable dilution water.
Stock Stock Stock Stock Stock
% ppm or ppb or sol: 10% sol: 1% sol: .1% sol. :01% sol; .001%
mg/L g/L 100 gm/L 10 gm/L 1 gm/L .1 gm/L .01 gm/L
100. 1,000,000
10. 100,000 1,000
5.6 56,000 560
3.2 32,000 320
1.8 18,000 180
1.0 10,000 100 1,000
.56 5,600 56 560
.32 3,200 32 320
.18 1,800 18 180
.1 1,000 10 100 1,000
.056 560 5,6 56 560
.032 320 3.2 32 320
.018 180 1.8 18 180
.01 100 1.0 10 100 1.000
.0056 56 5.6 56 560
.0032 32 3.2 32 320
.0018 18 1.8 18 180
.001 10 1.0 10 100 1,000
.00056 5.6 5.6 56 560
.00032 3.2 3.2 32 320
.00018 1.8 1.8 18 180
.0001 1.0 1.000 1.0 10 100
.000056 .56 560 5.6 56
.000032 .32 320 3.2 32
.000018 .18 180 1.8 18
.00001 .10 100 1.0 10
.0000056 .056 56 5.6
.0000032 .032 32 3.2
.0000018 .018 18 1.8
. 000001 . 010 10 1.0

Acid Mine:
Acid Water inhabitants
Acres Conversions
Activated Sludge
Activated Sludge Bulking
Active Decomposition Zone
Algae, Stabilization Ponds
Algal Controls:
Complete treatment
Marginal treatment
Restricted treatment
Stabilization ponds
Effects on humans
Nuisance influences
Products, extracellular
Animas River
Aquatic Environments
Aquatic Vascular Plants
Area Formulae
Artificial Substrata
Asiatic Clams
Bacteria, Sewage Treatment
Badfisb Creek
Bear River
Benthos, Stabilization Ponds
Bioassa ) 112,
Dilution chart
Dosage chart
Biodynamic Cycle
Biological Vegetation Control
B lackstone River
Bloodworm Control
Bloodworms, Water Supplies
Blower, Dry Chemical Applica-
Blue-green Algae 222
125, 127 Boston Harbor 167
121 Bottom Organism Sampling .... 55
125 Bnile River 78
271 Caddisfly Nuisances 230
176 Carbon in Aquatic Environment 138
199 Carbon-Nitrogen Ratios 142
214 Catherwood Diatometer 62
9.11 Ozara 223
204 C lzara Control 245
Charleston Harbor 165
242 Chattooga River 109
242 Chemical:
245 Application 243, 246
208 Controls 239
Formula 239
221 Regulations 25 !
223. 225 Treatment hazards 251
41 Usage 238
221 Chlorophyll 66, 154
38 Ciliates, Activated Sludge 200
43 Circumference formulae 271
41 Cladop/zora Control 245
Clams, Water Supplies 188
245 Clean Water Organisms 13
238 Clear Lake 229, 249
132 Color, Water 174
7 Columbia River 214
225 Conditions of Existence 3
271 Constable Tubes 71
62 Coosa River 96
234 Copepods, Water Supplies 187
195 Copper Compounds 238
157 Copper Sulfate:
103 Application 243
205 Dosage 240
134 Usage 240
276 Core Sampling 60, 102
276 Core Sediment Analysis 145, 150
5 Corrosion 182
247 Cost of Plant Problems 227
232 Critical Nutrient Values. Algae . 38
87 Data Interpretation 75
185 Deer Flies 234
184 Degradation Zone 9. 11
Demonstrations 77
243 Diatoms 222

Diatoms, Sediment Cores
152 Lake Nutrient:
Diatom Slide Preparation 72
Digesters 195
Dilution Table, Bioassay 277
Disso lved Oxygen Conversions . 271
Dissolved Oxygen 26 to 28
Dissolved Oxygen Criteria ... 27
Dosage Formula, Chemical . .. . 271
Dredging to Remove Nutrients. 36
Drift Nets 60
Drifting Organisms 107
Drop Counting Plankton Meth-
od 68
Duck Food Plants 227
East Pearl River 93
Ekman Dredge Use 58
Electrofishing 64
Encephalitis 230
Environmental Influences 7
Erie Lake 30
Estuarine Environment 16
Estuarine Sediment Nutrients . . 171
Etowah River 96
Eutrophication 35. 136
Feet Conversions 271
Fibers, Effects on Fish Eggs .. . 210
Field Counts, Plankton 67
Filter Clogging 175
Filter Flies, Trickling Filters . . . 198
Filter Fly Controls 199
Fish Sampling 64
Flagellates, Activated Sludge . . . 200
Flow 31
Flow Measurements 55
Fungi, Stabilization Ponds 204
Gallons Conversions 272
Geist Reservoir 189
Grass Carp 245
Green Algae 222
Harvesting 239
Nutrient removal 36
Healthy Streams 5
Helicopter Chemical Application 244
Herbicide Registration List . . . . 248
Horse Flies 234
Hydra 186
Illinois River
Imboff Tanks 195
Industrial Stabilization Ponds . . 201
Insects, Sewage Treatment 197
Investigations, Biological Chron-
icle 4
Investigation, Role of Biology . . 6
Iron Bacteria 182 ,219
Loadings 143
Retentions 142
Lake Pollution Criterion 83
Leeches 234
Leech Control 251
Leptomitus 218
Light 29
Light Criteria:
Algae 102
Rooted aquatic plants 102
Macronutrients 35
Mahoning River 112
Maintenance, Aquatic Areas . . . 237
Manganese 174
Marine Environments 161
Marsh Vegetation Control . . . . 248
Masonite Substrates 62, 105
Mayfly Problems 229
Mechanical Vegetation Controls 237
Membrane Filter Plankton Con-
centration 68
Menominee River 78
Michigan LakeS 30, 154
Nutrients 155
Plankton 157
Micronutrients 41
Microstraining 180. 185
Control 249
Life history 250
Nuisances 228
Miles Conversions 272
Monongahela River 126
Mosquitoes 206, 230
Mosquito Control 206
Municipal Stabilization Ponds .. 200
Nernatodes, Water Supplies ... . 186
Nitrate Conversion 274
Nitrogen 35
Aquatic environment 138
Criterion 156
Water supplies 174
In vegetation 239
Nitrogen-PhosPhoflls Ratios .... 142
National Technical Advisory
Committee 6
Nutrient Budget 136
Nutrient Sample Preservation .. 144
Objectives of Study 45
Odor Control. Stabilization
Orange-Peel Dredge

Organic Chemicals
Organic Wastes
Effects on streams
Effects on reservoirs
Organisms, Activated Sludge
Effects on pollution
Response to organic wastes
Streams vs. lakes
Pesticide Policy
Petersen Dredge Use
p IP
Effects on Leptomitus
Effects on Sphaerotilus
In aquatic environment
Drainage basins
To ecosystem
Forms of
In plants
Release from sediments
In sediments
Water treatment
Pipe Moss
Packed cell volume
\Tolume determination
Planning Study
Plant Dispersal
Plant Nuisancer
Polluted Streams
Polluted Water Organisms
Po lychaete Worm Criterion . . 164,
Ponar Dredge
Potomac River
Pounds Conversions
Pie-survey Arrangements
Problem Solving
Radioactive Concentration. Or-
Radioactive Wastes
Reconnaissance Survey
Recovery Zone
16, 78
237 Recommendations
13 Review
i i Summary
10 Title page
252 Reservoirs
58 Bed preparation
28 Soil effects
28 Stabilization
219 Sample:
217 Analyses
35 Collection
138 Containers
272 Sorting in laboratory
41 Taking
37 Dividing in laboratory
36 Sampling:
273 Bottom organisms
36 Control stations
36 Observations
152 Periodicity
174 Plankton
228 Tools
Vascular vegetation
67 San Diego Bay
71 Saprobien System
71 Scum Algal Control
69 Seasonal Lake Nutrient Changes
206 Sebasticook Lake
70 Secchi Disc
46 Sedgwick-Rafter Method
226 Sediments
227 Sediment Analysis
227 Sediment Identification, Nu-
4 trients
13 Sewage Fungus
169 Sewage. Nutrients in
60 Sewage Treatment Organisms
Short Filter Runs
fl 74
— S ilt
48 Effects on fish
Effects on algae
Effects on benthos
133 Criteria
1 31 Slimes. Effects on Organisms
57 Sludge Boils
47 Sludgeworm Criterion
12 Sludgeworms
246 Report 72
Appendix 75
Conclusions 73
c c

Smith-Mcintyre Dredge .
Snails, Trickling Filters
Snails, Water Supplies
Soil Stripping
South Platte River
Sow Bugs, Water Supplies
Growth media
Sponges, Water Supplies
Square-foot Sampler
Stabilization Ponds
Stabilization Pond Loadings
Standard Units
Standards of Water Quality
Station Selection:
Lakes and Reservoirs
Study Objectives
Submersed Plant Control
Sugar, Effects on Sphaerotilus
Sulfur Bacteria
Superior Lake
Surber Sampler
Tahoe Lake
Tastes and Odors
Centigrade to Fahrenheit
Fahrenheit to Centigrade
Effects on fish
Effects on benthos
Effects on Sphaeroti!us
Ten Mile River
Total to Soluble Phosphorus
Toxic Algae
Toxic Materials
Toxic Metals
Toxic Waste Effects
Trickling Filters
Unpolluted Areas, Organism Re-
Vegetation Mapping
Volume formulae
Waste Sources (report)
Water, Definition of
Water Fleas, Water Supplies
Water Quality
Water Quality Act of 1965
Water Quality Standards
Water Supply Organisms
Water Uses (report)
Wilding Sampler
Winter Sampling
Wisconsin River
Wood Fibers
Worms, Sewage Treatment
Worms, Water Supplies
Zones of Pollution
LI .3. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFF iCE: 1959 0—355—359
52, 89