Structural and functional assessment of benthic microbial and invertebrate communities to evaluate the ecological quality of polluted rivers (CommuSED)

Structural and functional assessment of benthic microbial and invertebrate communities to evaluate the ecological quality of polluted rivers (CommuSED)

To understand how pollutants affect surface waters, it is important to establish a link between the presence of pollutants and the communities living there. These are particularly useful for an ecotoxicological assessment as an intermediate organisational level between the population and the ecosystem. The presence of pollutants, on the one hand, can lead to the selection of pollutant-tolerant species. On the other hand, it can also lead to the development of an increased pollutant tolerance. Methods are particularly needed to investigate the influence of pollutants on communities in freshwater sediments. In two small rivers in France, the Tillet and the Ardières, different methods are used to characterise the sediment communities:

  • Bait lamina test. The bait lamina test measures the feeding activity of sediment organisms.
  • Oligochaete index. The biological oligochaete index IOBS (indice oligochètes de bioindication des sédiments) and other oligochaete indices assess the number, species composition and sensitivity of oligochaetes in the sediment.
  • Degradation of organic particular matter by microbial and invertebrate sediment communities
  • Structure and diversity of microbial sediment communities
  • PICT (Pollution Induced Community Tolerance). The PICT approach assesses the tolerance of microbial communities in the sediment to pollutants.

 

Report

Pression chimique et impacts écologiques : Distribution des contaminants et réponse des communautés de microorganismes et d'invertébrés dans les sédiments de l’Ardières et du Tillet (CommuSED)

Download report

 

Photo: Florian Pépellin - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Contact

Dr. Benoît Ferrari
Dr. Benoît Ferrari Send mail Tel. +41 (0) 21 693 5993 / +41 (0) 58 765 5373
Régis Vivien
Régis Vivien Send mail Tel. +41 (0) 21 693 2723

News

14. May 2020

Invertebrate and microbial communities in contaminated river sediments

The river sediments of Ardières and Tillet are both polluted with complex substance mixtures. The effect of the contamination with PCB on the oligochaete communities was clearly visible. The effect of the contamination on microbial communities was harder to assess because microbes are influenced by a multitude of environmental factors.

Read more