Since 1972, the BWQ has had the philosophy that getting a complete picture of water quality requires a multifaceted assessment strategy incorporating more than just chemical analyses. Aquatic life surveys, a missing piece in many monitoring programs, provide unique insight into the quality of a water body. Organisms that spend most or all of their lives in the water depend on clean water for their health, so assessment of the integrity of biological communities represents a holistic measure of water quality with the ability to detect a wide range of pollutants.
Over four decades later, there has been a tremendous increase in the numbers of clean water fish species, aquatic macroinvertebrates (insects), and mussels (clams) populating the White River. Each year, the biological studies section takes samples of these core indicator groups from streams throughout Delaware County. Samples are counted and collected by Bureau biologists and university students under a license issued by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.
Macroinvertebrates and Mussels