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Water Quality Assessment of Georgia's Major Rivers:
Biological Quality and Primary Productivity


PI: Keith W. Gates (Marine Advisory and Tech Transfer, Univ of Georgia Marine Extension Service, Athens, GA, USA)

Support: GA DNR Coastal Zone Management (through a Coastal Incentive Grant)

Project Overview:
This is a program of the Marine Extension Service to evaluate coastal water quality. The research is a cooperative effort with the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, The University of Georgia School of Marine Programs, the Georgia Sea Grant College Program, the Cooperative Extension Service, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, and The Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Network.

Monitored physical parameters for the rivers include: temperature, salinity profiles, dissolved oxygen profiles, percent oxygen saturation, light attenuation by secchi disk and submarine photometer, and current measurements. Primary productivity will be estimated by chlorophyll levels, ATP concentrations, chlorophyll a: ATP ratio, and primary productivity by the light and dark bottle oxygen method. Basic water quality will be assessed through MPN total coliform organisms, MPN E. coli organisms, biological oxygen demand levels (BOD), total suspended solids, ph, and turbidity. Nutrient interactions will be determined by measuring total phosphorus levels, ortho phosphate concentrations, total nitrogen concentrations, nitrate levels, nitrite levels, silicate concentrations, ammonia concentrations, and total organic carbon (TOC) content.

Timeframe and Project Links: Satilla (1999 - 2001), Ogeechee (2000 - 2002), Altamaha (2001 - 2003), St Marys (2006-2008)


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This page was updated August 31, 2009