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  • http://hdl.handle.net/10402/era.25041
  • Use of Indices of Biological Integrity (IBIs) to assess wetland health in dry and wet conditions
  • Wilson, Matthew J
  • English
  • marshes
    bioassessment
    plants
    birds
  • Jan 10, 2012 3:10 PM
  • Thesis
  • English
  • Adobe PDF
  • 1406193 bytes
  • Indices of Biological Integrity (IBIs) estimate the biological condition of an ecosystem by measuring biological metrics that predict underlying environmental stress. I evaluated the use of IBIs developed from 5 biotic communities at 81 semi-permanent/permanent natural and constructed wetlands. Wet meadow vegetation (R2 = 0.67) and songbirds (R2 = 0.59) were consistently sensitive to environmental stress and were strong surrogates of one another (R2 = 0.56), suggesting that plants can be used to predict songbird integrity and vise versa. Other plant and bird communities were not good indicators of environmental stress. A subset of 45 sites was resampled to evaluate the sensitivity of the wet meadow vegetation IBI to plant community changes between dry and wet conditions. Non-metric multi-dimensional scaling (NMS) revealed that IBI scores were fairly insensitive to plant community changes from relatively dry to wet conditions. These results suggest that plant-based IBIs are in fact effective at measuring ecosystem health in the Aspen Parkland.
  • Master's
  • Master of Science
  • Department of Biological Sciences
  • Ecology
  • Spring 2012
  • Bayley, Suzanne (Biological Sciences)
  • Bayley, Suzanne (Biological Sciences)
    Foote, A. Lee (Renewable Resources)
    Roland, Jens (Biological Sciences)