Date of Award

Spring 2009

Project Type


Program or Major

Natural Resources: Wildlife

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Kimberly Babbitt


From 2005-2007, I sampled macroinvertebrates at 10 vernal pools to determine the effects of forested buffer treatments (30-m or 100-m). I grouped taxa into three subgroups: taxa enumerated and identified to genus (Trichopterans, Anisopterans, Coleopterans, and Hemipterans); taxa identified to family and documented as present or absent; and predatory taxa (enumerated and identified to genus). I measured hydroperiod, surface area, pH, conductivity, substrate cover, canopy cover, and annual and seasonal variability and used Non-Metric Multidimensional Scaling (NMS) to examine effects on composition. Finally, I analyzed NMS scores using Linear Mixed Models. Buffer treatments explained a significant amount of variation in the presence/absence subgroup. Hydroperiod affected composition, richness and diversity. Substrate affected composition, and canopy cover had an inverse relationship with evenness. Seasonal succession also explained variation in genus composition. Although upland logging significantly affects invertebrate composition, hydroperiod appears to be the most important factor influencing macroinvertebrates in vernal pools.