Discipline: Ecology Environmental and Earth Sciences
Room: Exhibit Hall
Isabella Francesca Pangilinan - University of Southern California
Co-Author(s): Erika Dyèr, University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX; Isaiah Hernandez, San Antonio College, San Antonio, TX; Dr. Brian Laub, University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX
Bioretention basins are used to help reduce urban pollutants by filtering stormwater runoff before traveling downstream. Determining aquatic ecosystem response on treated stormwater run-off is important in understanding the effects of such run-off from an urban area. The purpose of this research was to determine how the bioretention basin increases or decreases the biodiversity of the invertebrate community and how soil is impacted compared to a grassy channel. At a site of a stormwater treatment basin at the main University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) campus, soils, vegetation, and invertebrate communities were monitored between June and July 2021. Two experimental sites were placed at a bioretention basin (site one) and a bioswale (site two), while a control treatment was placed in an undisturbed grassy channel (site three). Malaise traps, light traps, and net sweeps were utilized in the invertebrate collection process and sorted by identification of order. Additionally, soil quality at the three testing sites was analyzed for pH levels, sediment size, and organic matter content. All treatment areas were similar in canopy cover but differed in ground vegetation. Invertebrate results showed communities to not be significantly different between control and treatment sites. Soil results showed site one to contain the highest average percentage of organic matter content at 17.01% followed by site three at 2.91%, and site two at 1.77%. In addition, site two was found to have the most neutralized average pH level over two repetitions which was calculated to be 7.04 pH, site three averaged 7.1 pH, and site one averaged 7.45 pH. The bioretention basin appears to have impacted insect diversity due to a lack of vegetation cover. However, soils appear healthy based on organic matter content, suggesting the basin may increase in insect diversity as vegetation grows over time.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): National Science Foundation, CIMA-LSAMP Grant Number 2008428
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Brian Laub, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: I researched invertebrate biodiversity and vegetation surveys. I conducted several different sampling methods such as malaise traps, sweep nets, light traps, and separation of orders to collect and identify our invertebrates. Using a line-point method for the vegetation surveys, I identified the plants in the area for each site and measured how tall they were per meter. For the invertebrate results and conclusions, I analyzed the average number of orders, the sweep net number of orders versus the percent cover of vegetation, and 2019 versus 2021 order richness.