Assessment of sources of uncertainty in macrophyte surveys and the consequences for river classification

Staniszewski, Ryszard; Szoszkiewicz, Krzysztof; Zbierska, Janina; Lesny, Jacek; Jusik, Szymon; Clarke, Ralph T.. 2006 Assessment of sources of uncertainty in macrophyte surveys and the consequences for river classification. Hydrobiologia, 566. 235-246.

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The application of macrophytes in freshwater monitoring is still relatively limited and studies on their intercalibration and sources of variation are required. Therefore, the aim of the study was to compare selected indices and metrics based on macrophytes and to quantify their variability. During the STAR project, several aspects influencing uncertainty in estimation of the ecological quality of river were assessed. Results showed that several metrics based on the indicative value of plant species can be used in evaluation of the ecological status of rivers. Among estimated sources of variance in metric values the inter-surveyor differences had the lowest effect and slightly stronger were the influences of temporal variation (years and seasons) and shading. The impact of habitat modification was the most important factor. Analysis showed that some of macrophyte-based metrics (notably MTR and IBMR) are of sufficient precision in terms of sampling uncertainty, that they could be useful for estimating the ecological status of rivers in accordance with the aims of the Water Framework Directive.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Water
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: _ River Ecology
ISSN: 0018-8158
Format Availability: Electronic, Print
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: The original publication is available at
Additional Keywords: macrophytes, Mean Trophic Rank, aquatic vegetation, error assessment, biodiversity, river classification
NORA Subject Terms: Botany
Biology and Microbiology
Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 27 Jun 2007 11:44 +0 (UTC)

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