Original paper

Note: An efficient in situ method for sampling periphyton in lakes and streams

Peters, Lars; Scheifhacken, Nicole; Kahlert, Maria; Rothhaupt, Karl-Otto

Abstract

We present an efficient in situ sampling device that allows a simple and quantitative sampling of natural periphyton communities. The Brush Sampler is based on a previously developed sampler, which was improved by the addition of an external water supply, ball valve closing mechanism, and special exchangeable stiff brushes to solve previously reported problems of biomass overestimation and underestimation. The Brush Sampler was tested under ambient conditions in the field at four different sampling sites in a lentic and a lotic system and compared to the old sampler and control samples. The tests revealed a high inaccuracy of the old sampler and showed that biomass estimates (ash-free dry mass and chlorophyll-a content) obtained with the improved Brush Sampler did not significantly differ from biomass values determined from scrapings of control samples collected at the same sites. Therefore, our modified sampling device can be used as a tool for quantitative and qualitative epilithon community analyses.

Keywords

periphytonchlorophyll-asampling methodbrush samplerepilithonlittoral hard substratesmicrobenthosmeiofauna