Aquatic Field Investigation

Focus question: How do you measure the biotic and abiotic (living and nonliving) characteristics of an aquatic site to gain an understanding of how the habitat operates?

Wetland and shallow marine habitats all over the world share some common characteristics. In this investigation, you will have an opportunity to study some of these characteristics at a local aquatic site and to create a baseline study to scientifically describe the site. You will use several types of tools and sampling techniques to measure biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) characteristics. These measurements will help you determine the ability of the water at your local aquatic site to support life, and will help you evaluate how humans have affected the site's natural cycles and phenomena.


Rainbow Line

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Gene Carl Feldman ( (301) 286-9428
Todd Carlo Viola, JASON Foundation for Education (
Revised: 2 January 1996