Water Quality Division
Assessment of Stream Algae
An important measure of aquatic ecosystem health is the status of its algal community. We mainly concentrate on the density of the Periphyton (attached algae) community. Sometimes we also consider what types or species of algae are dominant in the stream to help us determine what might be negatively affecting the water quality. Nutrients from animal or human waste, or fertilizer, can cause increased algae growth. In Oklahoma streams, we most commonly see blue-green, common green, and filamentous algae.
Stream aquatic communities are assessed in conjunction with stream habitat and stream water quality to determine the stream's overall health.