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The biomonitoring system was designed to assess changes in toxicity of wastewater or surface water on a real-time basis using fish as the sensors. Previous research indicated that there were other responses in addition to the breathing rate which might be equally or more sensitive to changes in toxicity. These included fish activity (turns and episodes) and changes in the shape of the waveform generated as the fish breathes. To investigate the usefulness of these responses, four methods were used: strip-chart recordings, split-screen video techniques, Fast Fourier Transformation techniques, and a data replay software program. As a result of this research, the software of the biomonitoring system has been modified to include the additional responses which showed promise to increase the sensitivity of the system. Field testing of the system will be the next step.
biomonitoring, toxicity, fish, wastewater, coughs, turns, sensitivity, Fast Fourier Transformation
President, Senior Scientist, Biological Monitoring, Inc., Blacksburg, VA
Environmental Engineer, Biological Monitoring, Inc., Blacksburg, VA