Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects



Document Type



Studies concerning the microinvertebrate communities of differing pool sizes were conducted at Chaney Lake, an ephemeral, karst wetland located in Bowling Green, Kentucky. As the lake begins to dry in the early summer, smaller, isolated ponds begin to form. Several ponds of various sizes were marked for analysis. Microinvertebrate samples and physiochemical readings were taken at each of the sites and were counted in the lab. T-tests were performed on the samples to determine if the microinvertebrate densities differed between ponds that dried later in the season as opposed to those that dried earlier. Ostracoda densities of the late dry ponds were significantly higher than the densities for the early dry ponds for the second sampling date, suggesting that ponds that hold water longer may have higher densities of microinvertebrates. Bosmina and Diaphanasoma densities tended to show the same trends, but large standard errors caused these differences to be deemed insignificant. Food and space availability would likely become limiting sooner in the early dry ponds, a situation which could explain the larger increase in numbers of Ostracods for the late dry ponds.


Animal Sciences | Biology