Event Title

Investigating Escherichia coli and water quality in streams across montane-to-urban transitions in three Wasatch watersheds

Presenter Information

Erin Jones
Zachary Aanderud

Location

Eccles Conference Center

Event Website

http://water.usu.edu

Start Date

4-1-2014 5:35 PM

End Date

4-1-2014 5:40 PM

Description

Healthy streams and rivers are critical to the ecosystems around them, but the power that bacterial communities have to change water quality is not understood. We are examining E. coli and total coliform bacteria in streams across three land use types in three Utah watersheds: Logan, Red Butte, and Middle Provo. E. coli and total coliform bacteria concentrations were higher at urbanized and agricultural sites than alpine sites, especially in summer and fall months (repeated measures ANOVA, land use; E. coli: F>62, P<0.0001; Total coliform: F>17, P<0.0001). Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, land use was the best predictor of E. coli and total coliform levels, with better predictability at mountain sites (P<0.1512) than urban (P<0.4165). Our most urbanized watershed had E. coli concentrations that consistently exceeded the state standard (206 MPN CFU 100 mL-1), whereas the other two less-urbanized watersheds had only single locations along the stream possessing high E. coli concentrations. Our results suggest that the degree of urbanization determines water quality, including pathogenic bacteria levels. Eventually, we will use target-metagenomics of 16s rDNA to determine connections between fecal coliform bacteria and the microbial community and evaluate the connectivity of microbial communities across landscapes.

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Apr 1st, 5:35 PM Apr 1st, 5:40 PM

Investigating Escherichia coli and water quality in streams across montane-to-urban transitions in three Wasatch watersheds

Eccles Conference Center

Healthy streams and rivers are critical to the ecosystems around them, but the power that bacterial communities have to change water quality is not understood. We are examining E. coli and total coliform bacteria in streams across three land use types in three Utah watersheds: Logan, Red Butte, and Middle Provo. E. coli and total coliform bacteria concentrations were higher at urbanized and agricultural sites than alpine sites, especially in summer and fall months (repeated measures ANOVA, land use; E. coli: F>62, P<0.0001; Total coliform: F>17, P<0.0001). Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, land use was the best predictor of E. coli and total coliform levels, with better predictability at mountain sites (P<0.1512) than urban (P<0.4165). Our most urbanized watershed had E. coli concentrations that consistently exceeded the state standard (206 MPN CFU 100 mL-1), whereas the other two less-urbanized watersheds had only single locations along the stream possessing high E. coli concentrations. Our results suggest that the degree of urbanization determines water quality, including pathogenic bacteria levels. Eventually, we will use target-metagenomics of 16s rDNA to determine connections between fecal coliform bacteria and the microbial community and evaluate the connectivity of microbial communities across landscapes.

https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/runoff/2014/2014Posters/18