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Methods for Characterizing Physical, Chemical, and Biological Conditions of Wetlands in Central Nebraska

By Robert B. Swanson and Steven A. Frenzel
ABSTRACT: Methods were developed to collect representative physical, chemical, and biological samples at 31 wetlands in central Nebraska. Variable length transects of ten equidistant points designated locations where water was collected and composited. A polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) well bailer was excellent for collecting undisturbed water samples. Bottom sediments were collected at five transect points with a PTFE pipe for trace element determination and with a stainless steel coring device for nutrient and herbicide determination. Physical and chemical measures included depth, temperature, pH, conductivity, turbidity, nutrients, major ions, and herbicides. Biological analyses from the water column included phytoplankton community composition, and chlorophyll-a concentration. Odonate nymphs were collected by sieving bottom material through a fiberglass screen. Where sufficient mass of odonate nymphs were collected, trace elements were sampled in water, bottom sediments, and tissues. Qualitative invertebrate and algae samples were collected from relatively undisturbed areas near the transect. Vegetation was described at 30 equidistant points from two parallel transects 1 to 2 meters on either side of the water-column transect.

Swanson, R.B., and Frenzel, S.A., 1995, Methods for characterizing physical, chemical, and biological conditions of wetlands in central Nebraska [abs.]: Bulletin of the North American Benthological Society, v. 12, no. 1, p. 202.

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