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dc.contributor.authorBUNN, SE
dc.description.abstractBiological methods are widely accepted in water quality monitoring programmes worldwide; however, some concern remains over their effectiveness in predicting the effects of contaminants on aquatic ecosystems. While the so‐called‘early warning’ approaches, such as bioassays and biomarkers, have been used in Australia to demonstrate mechanisms of toxic action and exposure to contaminants, as elsewhere, little attempt has been made to link observed effects at these lower levels of biological organization to real impacts on aquatic systems. The ecological consequences of exposure to contaminants is undoubtedly best studied at higher levels of biological organization (i. e. at the population or community level). However, monitoring aquatic communities is labour intensive and inadequate for the early detection of impacts. Research is needed to identify links between the bioassessment measures used, so that changes at the lowest biological level (e. g. using biomarkers and bioassays) can be translated into likely‘real’ impacts on the aquatic system, as measured at the population or community level. Monitoring the genetic structure of populations of aquatic organisms, particularly invertebrates, may provide a potential link between subtle effects observed in bioassay tests and subsequent changes in population density and/or community structure. A streamlined approach to monitoring changes at the community level needs to be developed to improve predictive ability and to make this approach more responsive to the early detection and prevention of unacceptable impacts. In addition, research on the use of ecosystem level parameters, such as production/respiration ratios or community metabolism, should be undertaken to determine their suitability for routine biomonitoring of water quality in Australian inland waters.
dc.publisherBlackwell Publishing Asia
dc.relation.ispartofjournalAustralian Journal of Ecology
dc.subject.fieldofresearchEnvironmental Sciences
dc.subject.fieldofresearchBiological Sciences
dc.titleBiological monitoring of water quality in Australia: Workshop summary and future directions
dc.typeJournal article
dc.type.descriptionC1 - Peer Reviewed (HERDC)
dc.type.codeC - Journal Articles
gro.facultyGriffith Sciences, Griffith School of Environment
gro.hasfulltextNo Full Text
gro.griffith.authorBunn, Stuart E.

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