Department of Commerce (DOC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Ocean Service (NOS), National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assessment (CCMA), 20080501, National Status and Trends: Bioeffects Program - Biscayne Bay, Florida (1995-1996) Database: NOAA's Ocean Service, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), Silver Spring, MD.
Specific objectives of the study were to: (1) determine the incidence and degree of toxicity of sediments throughout the study area;(2) determine the spatial patterns (or gradients) in chemical contamination and toxicity, ifany, throughout the study area;(3) determine the spatial extent of chemical contamination and toxicity;(4) determine the statistical relationships between measures of toxicity and concentrations of chemical substances in the sediments.The dataset objective is to report information about chemical residues in sediment, sediment toxicity, and benthic infauna characteristics of the system.
MESURMENT QUALITY OBJECTIVES: SITE LOCATION - A stratified -random sampling design similar to those used in previous surveys conducted by NOAA's National Status and Trends Program was applied in Biscayne Bay. The study area was subdivided into 74 irregular-shaped strata. Large strata were established in the open waters of the bay where toxicant concentrations were expected to be uniformly low. This approach provided the least intense sampling effort in areas known or suspected to be relatively homogenous in sediment type, benthic communities, and water depth in regions relatively distant from contaminant sources. In contrast, relatively small strata were established in canals and urban harbors nearer suspected sources in which conditions were expected to be heterogeneous or transitional. As a result, sampling effort was more intense in the smaller strata than in the large strata. The large strata were roughly equivalent in size to each other and the small strata were roughly equivalent in size to each other. This approach combines the strengths of a stratified design with the random-probabilistic selection of sampling locations. Data generated within each stratum can be attributed to the dimensions of the stratum. Therefore, these data can be used to estimate the spatial extent of toxicity with a quantifiable degree of confidence (Heimbuch, et al., 1995). Strata boundaries were established to coincide with the dimensions of major basins, bayous, waterways, etc. in which hydrographic, bathymetric and sedimentological conditions were expected to be relatively homogeneous. Within the boundaries of each stratum, all possible latitude/longitude intersections had equal probabilities of being selected as a sampling location. The locations of individual sampling stations within each strata were chosen randomly using GINPRO software developed by NOAA applied to digitized navigation charts. In most cases three samples were collected within each stratum; in a few small strata only one or two stations were sampled. Four samples were collected in two large strata. Usually, four alternate locations were provided for each station in a numbered sequence. The coordinates for each alternate were provided in tables and were plotted on the appropriate navigation chart. In a few cases the coordinates provided were inaccessible by boat; these station locations were rejected and the vessel was moved to the next alternate. In small confined canals, the vessel was occasionally moved out of the center of the channel to avoid collisions with other boat traffic. A total of 226 samples was collected; 105 during March-May, 1995 and 121 during May-July, 1996. Each location was sampled only once. Nine sampling zones were established within the study area to aid in planning field operations. Field logistics were conducted aboard the NOAA Ship Ferrell and its launch. Vessel positioning and navigation were aided with a differential-corrected, Trimble NavGraphic XL Global Positioning System (GPS) unit and a compensated LORAN C unit. Both systems generally agreed well with each other when both were operational. Both were calibrated and their accuracy verified each morning at a known location within the study area. An acceptable tolerance goal for siting was that the sampling location be established within 0.2nm (+/- 120ft) of the given coordinates. In the event the vessel could not navigate to the site (i.e., too shallow) or the bottom type was not appropriate (i.e., rock or shellfish bed) then the first alternate site was substituted. In the event the first alternate could not be sampled then the second alternate site was sampled. ORGANIC AND INORGANIC CONTAMINANTS - The measurement quality objectives of the Sabine Lake Project specify accuracy and precision requirements of 30% for organic analytes and 15% for inorganic analytes in sediment samples. Link to Quality Assurance Project Plan WATE COLUMN MEASUREMENTS - Depth was recorded from the vessel's instrumentation to the nearest 0.1 foot.BENTHIC TAXONOMY - The minimum acceptable sorting efficiency was 95%. The minimum acceptable taxonomic efficiency was 95%.
Data are believed to be complete
All chemical contaminant values have been rounded to three significant digits. To accommodate the wide range of values, all concentration values have been formatted to the thousandth unit (0.001). The actual precision is as listed below. Metals, variable ug/g; Butlytins 0.01 ng Sn/g; PAHs 0.1 ng/g; PCBs 0.01 ng/g; Pesticides 0.01 ng/g; DATA QUALITY ASSURANCE PROCEDURES Organic and Inorganic Contaminants - QA procedures include blanks, spiked samples, and standard reference materials with each batch of samples. Any batch failing to meet the specifications presented in Section 9.1 would be reanalyzed or rejected. Benthic taxonomy - At a minimum, 10 percent of all samples were resorted and recounted on a regular basis. Ten percent of samples were randomly selected and re-identified. A voucher collection composed of representative individuals of each species encountered in the project was accumulated and retained.
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