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Water: Monitoring & Assessment

Wetland Bioassessment Methods

"Methods for Evaluating Wetland Condition" Reports

In cooperation with EPA's Office of Science and Technology, BAWWG has recently released 12 modules, collectively titled "Methods for Evaluating Wetland Condition," to help states and tribes build their capacity to monitor and assess the biological and nutrient conditions of wetlands. The modules will provide information to state and tribal water quality managers on how to conduct ecological assessments of wetland health. The modules focus on biological and nutrient assessment techniques and can be used for the development of biological and nutrient criteria for wetlands. Those modules related to biological assessment provide information on sampling and analytical methods used for monitoring plants, algae, birds, amphibians and macroinvertebrates. These reports also include information on classifying wetlands, testing metrics and constructing indexes of biological integrity. For more information on these modules see our fact sheet (linked to http://www.epa.gov/waterscience/criteria/wetlands/)

Pictures of Sampling Methods

Scientists use a variety of field methods to conduct biological assessments in wetlands. A few of the methods are shown below and are described in individual Wetland Bioassessment Case Studies.

Dip Netting for Macroinvertebrates or Amphibians



Activity Traps for Macroinvertebrates and Amphibians



Sorting Macroinvertebrates



Drift Fence and Pitfall Trap for Amphibians



Bird Point Count



Vegetation Sampling


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