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Regional guidelines for ecological assessments of freshwater environments - Standardised protocol for adult freshwater mussel monitoring in wadeable streams

TR 2016/23

Report: TR 2016/23

Authors: Alicia Catlin, Kevin Collier, Michael Pingram and Mark Hamer

About this report

This report is a comprehensive write up of the standardised monitoring protocol for native freshwater mussels developed by Waikato Regional Council for using in State of the Environment monitoring/reporting. It presents the development phase and results from recent years sampling. This protocol will formalise the methodology and make it readily accessible for other organisations wishing to undertake the methodology in streams. The protocol was developed with assistance of staff and students from the University of Waikato. 

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Regional guidelines for ecological assessments of freshwater environments -Standardised protocol for adult freshwater mussel monitoring in wadeable streams [PDF, 2.5 MB]

Contents

Abstract iii
1 Introduction 1
2 Freshwater mussel survey protocol development 4
2.1 Discovery phase 4
2.2 Selecting a monitoring site  6
2.3 Selecting a monitoring protocol 8
2.4 Deciding which variables to include 9
3 Protocol One - Presence/Absence 12
4 Protocol Two - Species density and size structure 13
5 Protocol Three - Presence, density, size structure & habitat 15
6 References 17
  Appendix 1 - Discovery phase trials 19
  Appendix 2 - Freshwater mussel survey form 22
Appendix 3 - Field and habitat assessment data sheets 26
FIELD ASSESSMENT COVER FORM (100m reach) 26
WADEABLE HARD-BOTTOMED AND SOFT-BOTTOMED STREAMS 26
Appendix 4 - Flow chart of methodology for Protocol 3 31
Appendix 5 - Equipment List 33
Appendix 6 - Returning Mussels to the stream 34
Appendix 7 - Freshwater mussel identification guide 35
Appendix 8 - Suite of analyses to be included in water sample testing for Protocol 3 37