SS3.14 An Interdisciplinary Journey Towards Integrated Aquatic Sciences: Homage to Jacob Kalff
Date: Thursday, June 13, 2002
Time: 3:00:00 PM
Location: Saanich
 
StuartDL, University of Washington, Seattle, USA, dstu@alumni.washington.edu
Brett, M, T, University of Washington, Seattle, USA, 
 
A STUDY OF PERIPHYTON INDUCED pH FLUCTUATIONS IN THE WHITE RIVER, WASHINGTON
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The White River, located in southern Puget Sound, experiences pH spikes, which frequently exceed levels deemed healthy for salmonid fish. During daily periods of high primary production periphyton draw CO2 from the water forcing bicarbonate ions to combine with hydrogen ions and form new carbonic acid (H2CO3 CO2). As hydrogen ions are removed from the River pH increases. On days with high photosynthesis it is common for pH to spike from 7.0 in the early morning to 8.5-9.0 in the afternoon. The purpose of this study was to gain a better understanding of periphyton dynamics and pH fluctuations in the White River that may be used for future TMDL regulation. From an extensive annual sampling program, trends of nutrient limitation were observed upstream of nutrient sources and a seasonal cycle of turbidity induced light limitation were observed at sites downstream of nutrient sources. The collected data were used to develop statistical models of pH, periphyton biomass, total suspended solids, nutrient concentration, flow and solar radiation that may prove useful in predicting pH spikes on the White River.