Methods for monitoring and controlling freshwater harmful algal blooms
Type of Degreethesis
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Fresh water is critical for our survival, and its responsible use is necessary for the sustainability of our planet. Surface-water ecosystems are important sources of recreation and potable water are threatened by increasing urbanization, pollution, environmental degradation, and eutrophication. One major consequence of nutrient pollution is the development of harmful algal blooms (HABs). Such events have been documented to cause illness in humans and death in domestic animals and livestock. Autotrophic prokaryotes, called cyanobacteria, are the primary phytoplankton group responsible for HABs in freshwater ecosystems. Because of these threats water resource managers are interested in monitoring and controlling cyanobacterial blooms. Chapter 1 of my thesis aimed to develop a method using fluoremetry of the pigment phycocyanin to quickly and reliably estimate cyanobacterial abundance from whole water samples. Chapter 2 of my thesis aimed to determine the effectiveness of using grass carp as a biological control for the cyanobacterium Lyngbya wollei.