Puget Sound Stream Benthos
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B-IBI Recalibration Documents and Materials

With funding from an EPA grant from 2010-2014, King County worked with regional partners and experts to enhance data analysis tools and encourage collaboration and standardization for benthic macroinvertebrate monitoring in the Puget Sound region. Newsletters, technical documents, presentations, and GIS resources related to this effort can be found on this web page.


Puget Sound Stream Monitor Vol. 4, May 2013
B-IBI recalibration, New Zealand mudsnail update, taxa attributes memo and landcover data available for download, 2012 WQ assessment
Puget Sound Stream Monitor Vol. 3, January 2013
3 vs. 8 square feet sampling results, taxa attribute revisions, and B-IBI recalibration update
Puget Sound Stream Monitor Vol. 2, February 2012
3 vs. 8 square feet samples collected, next steps for B-IBI grant, submitting data to EIM for WQ assessment, on demand hot water decon.
Puget Sound Stream Monitor Vol. 1, June 2011
Grant kickoff meeting highlights, promoting collaboration, upcoming sampling and trainings

Final Technical Documents

Updating the Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity (B-IBI): Outcomes and Key Findings, Elene Dorfmeier, Leska Fore, Jo Wilhelm, and Deb Lester
This report provides an overview of the key outcomes accomplished by this grant, an overview of the regional impact this project has made, and examines how this effort has promoted the use of B-IBI throughout the Puget Sound region.
Recalibration of the Puget Lowland Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity (B-IBI), Jo Wilhelm, Leska Fore, Deb Lester, and Elene Dorfmeier
Metric scoring was modified to a continuous scale, rescaling the original 1, 3, 5 discrete scoring system, so that each of the 10 metrics was scored 0-10. Total B-IBI range was expanded from 10-50 to 0-100. Scoring for three metrics was adjusted to account for taxonomic effort. Standardizing metric scaling to a continuous, rather than discrete scale, decreased variation of the recalibrated index 41% compared to the original scoring system.

Using Natural Attributes to Measure Stream Health

Using Natural History Attributes of Stream Invertebrates to Measure Stream Health, Leska Fore, Bob Wisseman, Jo Wilhelm, Deb Lester, Karen Adams, Gretchen Hayslip, and Peter Leinenbach
This document describes our effort to modify taxa attribute lists used to calculate B-IBI using published literature and knowledge of local taxa, explore individual taxa response to factors of human disturbance, and correlate metrics derived from updated taxa attribute lists with an independent human disturbance measure within the Puget Sound watershed.

Identifying Stressor Risk in Western Washington

Identifying Stressor Risk to Biological Health in Streams and Small Rivers of Western Washington, Elene Dorfmeier
An essential step in watershed management is the identification of key natural and anthropogenic stressors influencing important biological indicators of watershed health, such as B-IBI. Relative risk analysis provides quantifiable associations between stressors of concern and biological response, making this a useful tool to identify potential risks to aquatic biota, complimenting monitoring programs, and supporting watershed management decisions. For this project, water quality, sediment chemistry, and physical habitat data (146 sites) from the Washington State Department of Ecology’s Status and Trends Monitoring for Watershed Health and Salmon Recovery program were used to determine the relative importance and strength of relationship between benthic macroinvertebrate metrics and environmental stressors in western Washington streams and small rivers.

Evaluation of Stream Benthic Macroinvertebrate Sampling Protocols

Evaluation of Stream Benthic Macroinvertebrate Sampling Protocols: Comparison of 3 and 8 sq ft, Jo Wilhelm and Elene Dorfmeier
Side-by-side macroinvertebrate samples were collected from 55 Puget Sound stream sites using both 3 and 8 sq. ft. sampling protocols to (1) determine if data collected from 3 and 8 sq. ft. are comparable, and (2) if they are not comparable develop a conversion algorithm or “cross-walk”. Analyses showed no significant difference in mean B-IBI or B-IBI metric scores and taxonomic composition between 3 and 8 sq. ft. sampling areas. A minimum 500-count subsample is critical to the comparability between sampling protocols. Thus, no adjustments to metrics or the B-IBI are needed to make samples from different surface areas comparable if a target 500-count subsample is used.

Rivers Macroinvertebrate Sampling: Pilot Work

Puget Lowland River Benthic Macroinvertebrate Sampling: Pilot Study, Jo Wilhelm
2013 sampling at 20 Puget Sound river sites was combined with existing data available on Puget Sound rivers in the PSSB to evaluate candidate metrics for larger Puget Sound streams and rivers.


Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting

May 2014, Portland, OR
Recalibration of the Puget Lowland B-IBI, Jo Wilhelm, Leska Fore, Bob Wisseman, Deb Lester, Gretchen Hayslip, and Elene Dorfmeier

Salish Sea Conference

May 2014, Seattle, WA

NW Biological Assessment Workgroup Meeting (2013)

November 2013, Astoria, OR

Society of Freshwater Science Annual Meeting

May 2013, Jacksonville, FL

Presentation to Region 10 EPA

April 2013, Seattle, WA

King County Science Seminar

November 2012, Seattle, WA

National Water Quality Monitoring Conference

April 2012, Portland, OR

Project Advisory Board Meeting (2011)

May 2011, Bellevue, WA

NW Biological Assessment Workgroup Meeting (2011)

October 2011, Stevenson, WA

NW Biological Assessment Workgroup Meeting (2010)

October 2010, Astoria, OR