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Jacqueline Taylor ACF Abstract FY12

"Predicting the Effects of Land-Use and Climate Change on Michigan Stream Ecosystems"

Society for Freshwater Science Annual Meeting 2012

Increases in human activity can change the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of stream ecosystems. This study focuses on disturbances that are significant to the health of the watershed, specifically agriculture, urbanization, and climate change. Our objective in this study is to use macroinvertebrate community structure and function to assess stream ecosystem health in response to both climate change, and the effects of agriculture and urbanization under current and future scenarios. Our experimental design includes a comparison of pristine vs. agriculturally impacted tributaries of the Muskegon River below Croton Dam. Macroinvertebrates were collected using both qualitative and quantitative methods (spring/fall). Preliminary results indicate Chironomidae being the most abundant taxa in pristine and impacted sites. The dominant land cover types surrounding the streams are forest and agriculture.