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FÜBE [id:]

Method: Assessment system for rivers using phytobenthos in Estonia [Eesti pinnavee seisundi hindamise metoodika bioloogiliste kvaliteedinäitajate järgi. Jõed. Fütobentos (eelnõu)]

1. General information

1.01 GIG: Central-Baltic
Relevant intercalibration types:
IC decision for IPS for types RC4, RC5, RC6, also suitable for large rivers.
1.02 Category: Rivers
1.03 BQE: Benthic Diatoms
1.04 Country: Estonia
1.05 Specification: none
1.06 Method name: Assessment system for rivers using phytobenthos in Estonia
1.07 Original name:
Eesti pinnavee seisundi hindamise metoodika bioloogiliste kvaliteedinäitajate järgi. Jõed. Fütobentos (eelnõu)
1.08 Status: Method is/will be used in First RBMP (2009), Second RBMP (2015)
1.09 Detected pressure(s):
Eutrophication Specification of pressure-impact-relationship:
Ecological data from 139 river reaches were examined to establish pressure-impact relationship between diatom indices and eutrophication gradient. The relationship between three indices (IPS, TGI and Watanabe index) and TP (measured in summer during low water period) showed significant correlation (Spearman correlation ranging from 0.28 to 0.55, p < 0.001).
Yes, with quantitative data (e.g. against range of sites reflecting continuous gradient of pressure).
1.10 Internet reference: n.a.
1.11 Pertinent literature of mandatory character:
Methods are in practical use, currently not mandatory in legislation, will be mandatory in 2012.
1.12 Scientific literature:
Kahlert, M., R.-L. Albert, E.-L. Anttila, R. Bengtsson, C. Bigler, T. Eskola, V. Gälman, S. Gottschalk, E. Herlitz, A. Jarlman, J. Kasperoviciene, M. Kokocinski, H. Luup, J. Miettinen, I. Paunksnyte, K. Piirsoo, I. Quintana, J. Raunio, B. Sandell, H. Simola, I. Sunberg, S. Vilbaste & J. Weckström, 2009. Harmonization is more important than experience - results of the first Nordic-Baltic diatom intercalibration exercise 2007 (stream monitoring). Journal of Applied Phycology 21: 471-482.
Kelly, M., C. Bennett, M. Coste, C. Delgado, F. Delmas, L. Denys, L. Ector, C. Fauville, M. Ferreol, M. Golub, A. Jarlman, M. Kahlert, J. Lucey, B. Ni Chathain, I. Pardo, P. Pfister, J. Picinska-Faltynowicz, J. Rosebery, C. Schranz, J. Schaumburg, H. Van Dam & S. Vilbaste, 2009. A comparison of national approaches to setting ecological status boundaries in phytobenthos assessment for the European Water Framework Directive: results of an intercalibration exercise. Hydrobiologia 621: 169-182.
Vilbaste, S., J. Truu, Ü. Leisk & A. Iital, 2007. Species composition and diatom indices in relation to environmental parameters in Estonian streams. Archiv für Hydrobiologie - Supplement 161: 307-326.
1.13 Method developed by: Sirje Vilbaste
Email of developer:
Institute of developer: Estonian University of Life Sciences, Centre for Limnology
1.14 Method reported by: Sirje Vilbaste
Email of person reporting the method:
Email of institute reporting the method: Estonian University of Life Sciences
1.15 Comments: none

2. Data acquisition

Field sampling/surveying

2.01 Sampling/Survey guidelines: CEN 2003, 2004.
2.02 Short description:
Cobbles were gathered along a transect across the river. At deeper sites samples were taken only to a depth of 0.5 m. Diatom film was separated from the cobbles with a stiff toothbrush. The algal suspension from all gathered cobbles was mixed to obtain a bulky sample.
2.03 Method to select the sampling/survey site or area: Expert knowledge
2.04 Sampling/survey device: Brush
2.05 Specification: toothbrush
2.06 Sampled/surveyed habitat:
Specification of sampled habitat: Hard bottom
Sampled habitat: Single habitat(s)
2.07 Sampled/surveyed zones in areas with tidal influence: not relevant
2.08 Sampling/survey month(s): Late summer (July - August) low water season
2.09 Number of sampling/survey occasions (in time) to classify site or area: One occasion per year
2.10 Number of spatial replicates per sampling/survey occasion to classify site or area: 5 cobbles or boulders (d. 7-15 cm)
2.11 Total sampled/surveyed area or volume or total sampling duration to classify site or area:

Sample processing

2.12 Minimum size of organisms sampled and processed: 5 µm
2.13 Sample treatment:

One/third of sampling material were cleaned by hot acid combustion. Diatom slides were mounted into NAPHRAX
Sample is divided (sub-sampling) and organisms of a sub-sample are identified.
2.14 Level of taxonomical identification:
Level: Species/species groups
Specification of level of determination: n.a.
2.15 Record of abundance:
Determination of abundance: Individual counts
Abundance is related to: n.a.
Unit of the record of abundance: %
Other record of abundance: Relative abundance
2.16 Quantification of biomass: n.a.
2.17 Other biological data: none
2.18 Special cases, exceptions, additions: none
2.19 Comments: none

3. Data evaluation


3.01 List of biological metrics:
Three diatom indices: IPS, TDI, Watanabe Index calculated by means of the software OMNIDIA
3.02 Does the metric selection differ between types of water bodies: No
3.03 Combination rule for multi-metrics: Average metric scores
3.04 From which biological data are the metrics calculated:
List of biological metrics: Data from single sampling/survey occasion in time

Reference conditions

3.05 Scope of reference conditions: Site-specific
3.06 Key source(s) to derive reference conditions:
Scope of reference conditions: Existing near-natural reference sites, Least Disturbed Conditions
3.07 Reference site characterisation:
Number of sites: 8
Geographical coverage: Estonia
Location of sites: Estonia
Data time period: Single samples started from 2003
Criteria: TP<0.05 mg/L TN<1.50 mg/L NH4< 0.02 mg/l
3.08 Reference community description: Dominating by Achnanthdium minutissimum
3.09 Results expressed as EQR: Yes

Boundary setting

3.10 Setting of ecological status boundaries: Equidistant division of the EQR gradient
Other boundary setting:
Equidistant division of the EQR gradient (boundary setting at 0.9, 0.7, 0.45, 0.2 of median reference sites
3.11 Boundary setting procedure: n.a.
3.12 "Good status" community: n.a.


3.13 Consideration of uncertainty: No (to be done)
3.14 Comments: none

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Online: [date: 2022/01/28]
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