03 Aquatic Ecology - Aquatic Ecology Chad K Bush December 1...

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Aquatic Ecology Chad K. Bush December 1, 2005 Bryant Bowen
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Abstract The purpose of this experiment is to analyze the abiotic and biotic factors that contribute to the aquatic microbial ecology of Lake Byron at the campus of the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. The abiotic factors examined in this experiment include the dissolved oxygen content, temperature, pH, alkalinity, and hardness of the water in two different sites (one near shore, one open water) in which the microorganisms live. The biotic factors of the Lake Byron ecological system on the microbial level include communities of phytoplankton and zooplankton. The Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index will be used in order to quantitatively determine the ecological diversity among microbial organisms in Lake Byron. The final result is an analysis of how the abiotic factors listed above affect the richness and evenness of microbial life in Lake Byron. Introduction Ecology is the study of how organisms interact with their environment. The environment in which the organisms live include both abiotic (nonliving, such as the ones that are listed above) and biotic (living) factors. One of the main points of this experiment is to analyze how the abiotic factors contribute to biodiversity in our ecological system, Lake Byron. In weasel words, we are interested in how abiotic factors affect how many different kinds of organisms there are in the system and how many of each species are present. (Lee 99) These weasel words are the definitions of richness (how many different species) and evenness (how many of each species). We use the Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index in order to condense richness and evenness into one number for 1
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comparison of systems. This index is described by the following equation: H = - p i LN p i Where H is the diversity index itself, and p i is the relative abundance of a given species. The negative of the sum of all the species is taken, and the diversity index for the system
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03 Aquatic Ecology - Aquatic Ecology Chad K Bush December 1...

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