Evaluating Ecological Indicators: Lakes In The Northeastern United States
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
We use data from a survey of several hundred lakes in the northeastern United States by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to illustrate an approach to identifying promising indicators of lake condition. We construct a hypothetical gold standard of water quality from the first principal component of 16 chemical variables measured in the lakes, and examine its associations with 71 candidate indicators based on measurements of human activity, birds, fish and zooplankton in the lakes or their watersheds. Nonparametric summaries of these associations – based on rank correlations and receiver-operating-characteristic curves – suggest that variables summarizing the extent of human disturbance are generally the strongest indicators. To the extent that our water-quality variable is a useful proxy for ecological condition, our results suggest that easily-obtained measures of human activity are at least as predictive as many of the harder-to-measure biological indicators that have been proposed.
- Adams, S. M. eds. (2002) Biological Indicators of Ecosystem Stress. American Fisheries Society, Bethesda, Maryland
- Allen, A. P., Whittier, T. R., Kaufmann, P. R., Larsen, D. P., O'Connor, R. J., Hughes, R. M., Stemberger, R. S., Dixit, S. S., Brinkhurst, R. O., Herlihy, A. T., Paulsen, S. G. (1999) Concordance of taxonomic richness patterns across multiple assemblages in lakes of the northeastern United States. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 56: pp. 739-747 CrossRef
- Baker, J. R., Peck, D. V., Sutton, D. W. eds. (1997) Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program Surface Waters: Field Operations Manual for Lakes. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington D.C.
- Bryce, S. A., Hughes, R. M., Kaufmann, P. R. (2002) Development of a bird integrity index: Using bird assemblages as indicators of riparian condition. Environ. Manage. 30: pp. 294-310 CrossRef
- Burnham, K. P., Anderson, D. R. (2002) Model Selection and Multimodel Inference: A Practical Information-Theoretic Approach. Springer, New York
- Carignan, R., Steedman, R. J. (2000) Impacts of watershed perturbations on aquatic ecosystems. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 57: pp. 1-4 CrossRef
- Carignan, V., Villard, M.-A. (2002) Selecting indicator species to monitor ecological integrity: A review. Environ. Monit. Assess. 78: pp. 45-61 CrossRef
- Chaloud, D. J. and Peck, D. V. (eds): 1994, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program: Integrated Quality Assurance Project Plan for the Surface Waters Resource Group, 1994 Activities, EPA/600/X-91/080, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, EMSL, Las Vegas, Nevada.
- Cottingham, K. L., Carpenter, S. R. (1998) Population, community, and ecosystem variates as ecological indicators: phytoplankton responses to whole-lake enrichment. Eco. Appl. 8: pp. 508-530
- Cude, C. G. (2001) Oregon water quality index: A tool for evaluating water quality management effectiveness. J. Am. Water Resour. Assoc. 37: pp. 125-138
- Davis, W. S. and Simon, T. S. (eds): 1995, Biological Assessment and Criteria: Tools for Water Resource Planning and Decision Making, Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, Florida.
- Gergel, S. E., Turner, M. G., Miller, J. R., Melack, J. M., Stanley, E. H. (2002) Landscape indicators of human impacts to riverine systems. Aquat. Sci. 64: pp. 118-128 CrossRef
- Hanley, J. A., McNeil, B. J. (1982) The meaning and use of the area under a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve. Radiology 143: pp. 29-36
- Herlihy, A. T., Stoddard, J. L., Johnson, C. B. (1998) The relationship between stream chemistry and watershed land cover data in the mid-Atlantic region, U.S. Water Air Soil Pollut. 105: pp. 377-386 CrossRef
- Hughes, R. M. Defining acceptable biological status by comparing with reference conditions. In: Davis, W.S., Simon, T.P. eds. (1995) Biological Assessment and Criteria: Tools for Water Resource Planning and Decision Making. Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, Florida, pp. 31-47
- Hughes, R. M., Howlin, S., Kaufmann, P. R. (2004) A biointegrity index (IBI) for coldwater streams of western Oregon and Washington. Trans. Am. Fish. Soc. 133: pp. 1497-1515 CrossRef
- Hughes, R. M., Kaufmann, P. R., Herlihy, A. T., Kincaid, T. M., Reynolds, L., Larsen, D. P. (1998) A process for developing and evaluating indices of fish assemblage integrity. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 55: pp. 1618-1631 CrossRef
- Hunsaker, C. T. and Carpenter, D. E. (eds): 1990, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program: Ecological Indicators, Atmospheric Research and Exposure Assessment Laboratory, Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.
- Jackson, L. E., Kurtz, J. C. and Fisher, W. S. (eds): 2000. Evaluation Guidelines for Ecological Indicators, EPA/620/R-99/005, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.
- Klemm, D. J., Blocksom, K. A., Fulk, F. A., Herlihy, A. T., Hughes, R. M., Kaufmann, P. R., Peck, D. V., Stoddard, J. L., Thoeny, W. T., Griffith, M. B. (2003) Development and evaluation of a macroinvertebrate biotic integrity index (MBII) for regionally assessing mid-Atlantic Highlands streams. Environ. Manage. 31: pp. 656-669 CrossRef
- Kottferova, J., Korenekova, B., Breyl, I., Nadaskay, R. (1996) Free-living animals as indicators of environmental pollution by chlorinated hydrocarbons. Toxicol. Environ. Chem. 53: pp. 19-24
- Meybeck, M. (1998) Man and river interface: Multiple impacts on water and particulates chemistry illustrated in the Seine river basin. Hydrobiologia 373–374: pp. 1-20 CrossRef
- Murtaugh, P. A. (1996) The statistical evaluation of ecological indicators. Ecol. Appl. 6: pp. 132-139
- Murtaugh, P. A. (2003) On detecting hump-shaped relationships in ecology: A bootstrap test for monotonicity. Environmetrics 14: pp. 1-6 CrossRef
- Eutrophication of Waters. Monitoring, Assessment and Control. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris
- R Development Core Team: 2004, R: A language and environment for statistical computing, R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria, ISBN 3-900051-00-3, URL http://www.R-project.org.
- Ramsey, F. L., Schafer, D. W. (2002) The Statistical Sleuth: A Course in Methods of Data Analysis. Duxbury, Pacific Grove, CA
- Rusak, J. A., Yan, N. D., Sorners, K. M., Cottingham, K. L., Micheli, F., Carpenter, S. R., Frost, T. M., Paterson, M. J., McQueen, D. J. (2002) Temporal, spatial, and taxo-nomic patterns of crustacean zooplankton variability in unmanipulated north-temperate lakes. Limnol. Oceanogr. 47: pp. 613-625 CrossRef
- Smith, E. P. Statistical considerations in the development, evaluation, and use of biomarkers in environmental studies. In: Adams, S. M. eds. (2002) Biological Indicators of Ecosystem Stress. American Fisheries Society, Bethesda, Maryland, pp. 565-590
- Stemberger, R. S., Lazorchak, J. M. (1994) Zooplankton assemblage responses to disturbance gradients. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 51: pp. 2435-2447 CrossRef
- Sullivan, T. J., Cosby, B. J. (1998) Modeling the concentration of aluminum in surface waters. Water Air Soil Pollut. 105: pp. 643-659 CrossRef
- Xu, F.-L., Tao, S., Dawson, R. W., Li, P.-G., Cao, J. (2001) Lake ecosystem health assessment: Indicators and methods. Water Res. 35: pp. 3157-3167 CrossRef
- Evaluating Ecological Indicators: Lakes In The Northeastern United States
Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
Volume 119, Issue 1-3 , pp 83-96
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers
- Additional Links
- ROC curve
- water quality
- Industry Sectors