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Freshwater Ecology and ConservationApproaches and Techniques$
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Jocelyne Hughes

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198766384

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198766384.001.0001

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Chemical Determinands of Freshwater Ecosystem Functioning

Chemical Determinands of Freshwater Ecosystem Functioning

(p.89) 5 Chemical Determinands of Freshwater Ecosystem Functioning
Freshwater Ecology and Conservation

Nic Pacini

Libor Pechar

David M. Harper

Oxford University Press

Chemical equilibria in surface waters stem from complex interactions between physical background and living components of ecosystems. Catchments differ in geological background, climate, and land use; their run-off bears a distinctive chemical ‘fingerprint’. This chapter illustrates how the monitoring of standard parameters, such as oxygen, pH, conductivity, major ions, nutrients, and carbon, can lead to an interpretation of key aspects of the functioning of major ecosystem processes and how chemical constituents may affect the distribution of aquatic organisms. This requires understanding principles that underlie available measurement techniques and it demands a certain familiarity with the intrinsic variability of parameter values and of their chemical interaction. It is not required that field scientists be able to conduct detailed chemical assessments, but all should be able to collect samples yielding high-quality data. Therefore, detailed advice on chemical monitoring practice is provided, including sample collection, filtering, sample processing, and is discussed with the context of several case studies.

Keywords:   monitoring, ecohydrology, pH measurement, inorganic C, photosynthesis, water samples, major ions, conductivity, filtering

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