Water Quality Lab Report Paper Example

Published: 2021-08-03 03:59:27
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I. Pre-lab questions related to information in the WATER QUALITY BACKGROUND INFORMATION DOCUMENT as well as the Field lab instruction sheet. (4 pts)

1. List at least four very different ways that water quality can be degraded- include both physical and chemical impacts (0.5 pt) Pollutants

Sediments

Stream velocity

Thermal pollution

Invasive species

2. a) What does the word eutrophication translate to mean and what situation does it refer to? (0.25) The process of becoming eutrophicit can be a natural process or result from human activity such as agriculture runoff or sewage pollution. In aquatic ecosystems, an increase in the algae population is termed an algal bloom.

2b) What pollutants lead to algae blooms? (0.25) High temperatures, increased light, phosphorus and nitrogen,

2c) Which one chemical factor are we measuring in our field lab that is linked to algae blooms? (0.25) Low oxygen in water

2d) Explain the steps that lead to low oxygen levels in the water when there are algae blooms. What is the main mechanism behind low O2 levels? (0.5) Excess nitrogen and phosphorus cause an overgrowth of algae in a short period of time, also called algae blooms. The overgrowth of algae consumes oxygen and blocks sunlight from underwater plants. When the algae eventually dies, the oxygen in the water is consumed.

3. List at least two different ways water quality is degraded when we remove riparian vegetation. (0.5) Riparian vegetation acts as filters which reduces the amount of solid substances that gets into the water, thus reduces sediments in water.

Secondly, the vegetation acts as a coolant to water which reduces temperature thereby decreasing the rate at which oxygen dissolves from water.

4. Why is it useful to study aquatic bugs when tracking water quality? i.e. why not just measure the water chemistry once and awhile? (0.25) Aquatic bugs show the source of the water and even the types of nutrients that are present. For example, most larvae of caddisflies, mayflies, and stoneflies cannot survive in polluted water so streams with these bugs are assumed to have good water quality.

5. a) If a lake is measured to have a pH of 9, how many grams of H+ (hydrogen ions or protons) are there per liter? (0.25) 10-9

5b) Would this be acidic, neutral or alkaline? (0.25) alkaline

5c) Would this value be okay for our local freshwater species? (0.25) This would not be okay since the accepted range should be between 6.5-8.5

6. List three very different ways that you personally degrade water quality directly or indirectly (though I know you do not mean to!) (0.75) Through fertilization where chemicals are taken to what bodies via erosion

By ploughing along the rivers banks where sediments get into the water.

By dumping domestic wastes in water system

II. FIELD OBSERVATIONS (36 pt)

A. OVERVIEW (6 pt)

1. LOCATIONS of TWO WATER BODIES: Copy and paste maps and/or aerial photos that are at a scale that shows landmarks so someone could understand where it is. Also include explanations or symbols showing approximately where your observation and sampling sites were. (2 pt)

Online maps often cannot be copied so you can do a SCREEN PRINT: hold down the ctrl key and hit prnt scrn then copy and paste. You can then activate the photo of your computer screen, hit FORMAT then CROP to zoom in to the map. You might also Insert shapes to add arrows etc.

 

2. BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND HYPOTHESES: (2 pt)

a) From what you see in aerial photos and map, have seen yourself or read about online, list the major human activities and structures that likely impact the water quality (e.g. golf courses, freeways, residential urban homes, rural development/agriculture, etc). Were you able to determine inflows/outflows from the maps or information?

One of the major activities that would like to impact water quality is constructions of the houses next to the lake. Another one is wastes dumped by kids who have their play ground near the lake. Another activity is soil erosion which may get sediments into the lake since there are several roads around the lake.b) What did you find out about historical uses/impacts to this water? Current management or known issues? (e.g. some lakes are treated with chemicals to reduce toxic algae. Some are stocked with fish. Others are known to be so clean there are natural salmon runs. Cite your sources.

3. PREDICTIONS (these are made BEFORE you do the field work and chemical tests): offer some predictions of what you expect to find when you visit the site: will it be good and healthy? Lots of wildlife? Healthy pH and phosphate levels? Will one water body likely be healthier than the other? What is your reasoning? It is perfectly okay if in the end your predictions are not correct! (1 pt)

4. LOGISTICS: Date(s) and time(s) and weather - make a note of the recent and present weather conditions that might affect water quality (1 pt)

10/30/2017, Mini Park, about 5:45 pm, sunny day, no rain all day.

10/30/2017, Martha Lake Park, about 6:30 pm,

10/31/2017, Mini Park 3:30 pm,

10/31/2017, Martha Lake 4:00 pm, also sunny day, no rain.

B. FIELD ASSESSMENTS OF WATER BODY A: (8 pt) Name of water body: __ Mini Park _________

1. PHOTOS (4 pt)

a) you or your helper with the water body and/or shoreline features in the background to show vegetation, geology, disturbances of note, etc. (this might mean several photos)

 

b) you or your helper collecting water sample #1

 

c) you or your helper collecting water sample #2

 

This is my helper, Vicky, from ENVS class, we went to the park together.

d) Photo of the water itself so that I can see the cloudiness/clarity etc

2. Description of Vegetation (1 pt): What is the shoreline like? Are there trees? Grass? Sidewalks? If trees, how tall? How diverse? Look natural or planted by humans? You can estimate percentages of the various kinds of cover. Is there vegetation leaning over the edge of the water, providing shade, leaves, and bugs?

The shoreline is covered by grass and vegetation. There are many trees back to the pond, not very tall I think. It looks natural, not planted by humans. Yes, there are vegetation leaning over the edge of the water, providing shade when is sunny, and have leaves, but I didnt see the bugs because of the cold weather right now.

3. Description of Geology: (1 pt) what are the banks like? Steep or flat? Rocky? Sandy? Silty? Crumbling? Grassy? Comments about erosion potential.

The bank like a flat area, it is a little bit like grassy? I guess. erosion potential not good.

4. Wildlife observed: (1 pt) What animals (ducks, bugs, birds in the trees, frogs, fish, etc.) do you see (or hear) atop, within or near the water? How abundant are they? Do you see any wildlife evidence (e.g. pawprints in mud, feces, webs, holes in leaves, nests). If youve been here before and recall wildlife, mention that also.

I saw many kinds of ducks in the Mini Park, almost 100. There are some duck feces in the pond and on the grass. I also hear and some birds sound.

 

5. Visual and olfactory assessment of the water (1 pt)

What do you see floating on the surface of your two sites, if anything? Lilies? Litter? Scum? Oil? Is the water clear, kind of cloudy like tea? Very cloudy like coffee? Use your own descriptions. What color is the water? Do you smell anything odd that might indicate a water quality issue?

There are a little litter, some leaves, and grass floating on the surface of Mini Park. The water is very clear, like black tea, but its little bit darker than tea because there are some little stones, rocks under the water. I didt smell anything odd that might indicate a water quality issue.

Chemical data is recorded below

C. FIELD ASSESSMENTS AT WATER BODY B: (8 pt) name of water body: _Martha Lake Park___

1. PHOTOS (4 pt)

a) you or your helper with the water body and/or shoreline features in the background to show vegetation, geology, disturbances of note, etc. (this might mean several photos)

 

b) you or your helper collecting water sample #1

 

c) you or your helper collecting water sample #2

 

d) Photo of the water itself so that I can see the cloudiness/clarity etc

2. Description of Vegetation (1 pt): What is the shoreline like? Are there trees? Grass? Sidewalks? If trees, how tall? How diverse? Look natural or planted by humans? You can estimate percentages of the various kinds of cover. Is there vegetation leaning over the edge of the water, providing shade, leaves, and bugs?

The shoreline is covered by grass and vegetation. There are many trees around the lake, not very tall. It looks natural, not planted by humans.No, there arent vegetation leaning over the edge of the water.

3. Description of Geology: (1 pt) what are the banks like? Steep or flat? Rocky? Sandy? Silty? Crumbling? Grassy? Comments about erosion potential.

The bank likes a flat area, and it s a beach, erosion potential not good.

4. Wildlife observed: (1 pt) What animals (ducks, bugs, birds in the trees, frogs, fish, etc.) do you see (or hear) atop, within or near the water? How abundant are they? Do you see any wildlife evidence (e.g. pawprints in mud, feces, webs, holes in leaves, nests). If youve been here before and recall wildlife, mention that also.

There are some ducks in the other side of the lake. I heard the birds cry. Last time I went to there I saw the seagull, if I didnt wrong, then, and many insects, because it was summer.

5. Visual and olfactory assessment of the water (1 pt)

What do you see floating on the surface of your two sites, if anything? Lilies? Litter? Scum? Oil? Is the water clear, kind of cloudy like tea? Very cloudy like coffee? Use your own descriptions. What color is the water? Do you smell anything odd that might indicate a water quality issue?

There are some leaves floating on the surface of Martha Lake Park. The water is pretty clear, I could see the bottom of water, like blue and a little green. I didnt smell anything odd that might indicate a water quality issue.

D. CHEMICAL DATA (6 pt)

1. PHOTO(S) of the pH and phosphate baggies with colorful results (2 pt)

 

 

2. Data table (4 pt)

Waterbody and site: Estimation of pH value? Is this acidic, neutral or alkaline? Is this within the range of a healthy water body? Between 6.5-8 is good Estimation of phosphate? Is this within the range of a healthy water body? Anything even approaching 1 ppm is too much! Natural water has only 0.03 ppm

Mini Park #1 Est 6.5-7.0 Neutral, Healthy Est. 0.01-0.5 ppm, Yes

Mini Park #2 Est 7.5-8.0 Neutral, Healthy Est. 0.01-0.03 ppm, Yes

Martha Lake Park #1 Est 7.5-8 Neutral, Healthy Est. 0.5-1 ppm, Yes

Martha Lake Park #2 Est 7-7.5 Neutral, Healthy Est. 0.01-0.5 ppm, Yes

E. CONCLUSIONS AND COMPARISONS BETWEEN THE SITES AND TWO WATER BODIES (7 pt)

1. Describe how all the pH samples comparedwhere some darker/greener/yellower? And what does this mean in terms of acidity/alkalinity? Does this make sense to you relative to what you have learned about acidity? Acids in water are usually from rotting leaves, lack of photosynthesis (which sucks Co2 out of water), and acidic pollutants. Other pollutants are alkaline such as soaps and industrial cleaners. CO2 from cars does not usually dissolve directly into local water in enough volumes to create measurable changes in pH. (Its a regional/global issue.) Relate your data to what you suspect to be true about these sites. Is this what you would have predicted? Use relevant vocabulary in your thoughtful response. (2 pt)

2. Describe how all the PHOSPHATE samples comparedwhere some more blue than others? Does this make sense to you relative to what you have learned about phosphate and where it comes from (sewage, fertilizers, detergents/soaps)...

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