Aquatic Biota Monitoring

Coastal and marine waters serve as sinks for wastes from land-based sources, provide livelihood directly and indirectly to millions of people, provide food, maintain water cycles, regulate climatic conditions, and maintain the complex ecological balance of coastal and marine ecosystems. Therefore, sustainably managing the coastal and marine resources, as well as, maintaining its quality is a high priority. Owing to the development of housing, industry and support infrastructure having cumulative impacts on the integrity of coastal and marine environments, industries are now viewed as important partners in environmental management.

Aquatic monitoring activities have been conducted on a wide variety of aquatic resources for a diverse set of objectives and information needs. In general these activities are intended to provide information on compliance with regulations, establish the aquatic resource conditions or status, measure the effectiveness of management and regulatory programs, and supply information to policy planning.

Activities of aquatic biota monitoring include the following:

  • Physico-Chemical Parameters – water quality parameters usually assessed in situ for aquatic environments are Dissolved Oxygen (DO), Salinity, Alkalinity (pH) and Temperature.
  • Freshwater and Estuarine Environments – benthic fauna is collected and the economic and/or ecological importance of these organisms is determined.
  • Marine Environment – Several biotic communities, including corals, fisheries and plankton are monitored.

The data obtained for the various aquatic communities are subjected to statistical and analytical tools. Graphical representations to facilitate understanding of the results are provided in a report.