Tuesday, 7 October 2008
George R. Brown Convention Center, Exhibit Hall E
Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a member of the fecal coliform group of bacteria that inhabit the gastrointestinal tract of humans and other animals. E. coli is associated with various diseases like meningitis, sepsis, and gastroenteritis. E. coli is released to water bodies (lakes and rivers) through leaking septic systems, feedlot runoff and manure application to fields. While much work has been done to study E. coli loading in water and the sources of E. coli found in water, the relationship between E. coli loading of water and sediment has not been studied extensively. The purpose of this study was to determine if a correlation exists between E. coli loading of water and sediment in Sauk River, Minnesota. Water samples will be collected in triplicate from 17 different sites along the Sauk River once a month from April to September 2008. Sediment samples were collected in triplicate from 3 sites once a month from April to September 2008. Water samples were analyzed for E. coli using EPA approved membrane filtration technique. Sediment samples were analyzed for E. coli using multiple tube fermentation technique and enumerated using most probable number (MPN) method. In addition to bacterial analysis, the samples will also be analyzed for nutrients (nitrate, phosphorus, and ammonia), pH, conductivity, and suspended and total solids. E. coli data will be statistically analyzed to determine if a correlation exists between E. coli loading of water and sediment.