Eutrophication Lab Report

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Eutrophication is a condition in an aquatic ecosystem where high nutrient concentrations stimulate blooms of algae (e.g., phytoplankton). Eutrophication is a natural process that occurs to all lakes over time as the weathering of rocks and soils from the surrounding area that leads to an accumulation of nutrients in the water. It can also be caused by run-offs of fertilisers. Three of the key components of modern fertilisers are nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. After a rainy season these nutrients that were not absorbed, run off into waterways such as dams, lakes, rivers, streams, ponds and even sometimes swimming pools. The fertiliser triggers the growth of plants that are in the ground or in the medium of water. When the
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However it is recommended that further research should be done as fertilizers not only speed up the growth but large amounts over time can slow it down thus provided an unusual result in this experiment. Improvements to be made can be different types of fertilizer – such as one with different concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. The amount of sunlight each container of duckweed receives may also play a role as too much will cause the water to heat resulting in the plants death. The hypothesis stated that it was expected that the duckweed growth would accelerate if more fertilizer to the liquid medium. However as seen in the results too much fertilizer will cause an initial bloom of duckweed but as the days passed the growth rate lessened slightly instead of it continuing to increase significantly. This could possibly mean that more duckweed would be allowed to absorb nutrients creating an oversupply thus stunning the growth slightly. Another option was that the oversupply was absorbed faster therefore less was available after a certain time period had passed. Therefore the results do not reflect the hypothesis and literature review very accurately as it states that as the growth rate declines in the experiment as more fertilizer is added whereas the information says it should increase at a faster pace when more fertilizer is added. (InfoBased …show more content…
However, when compared to container B it is slightly slower as the growth of the duckweed in B is much faster due to 10 more grams of fertilizer being added. In container C there is an initial large increase in speed due to the highest amount of fertiliser being added to it, however the growth decreases as time passes possibly as a result of the nutrients in the fertilizer being absorbed faster because there is more available or due to there being a larger initial growth of duckweed which absorbed the nutrients before more could grow. In container D the growth stayed constant as this was the control which allowed us to compare the growth of duckweed with added fertilizers as opposed to no fertilisers. Therefore, as this is parsimonious, it was shown that the speed of growth of D was not as fast as the growth of A, B or C which had added fertilisers.

Declaration of authenticity
We, Diyajal Ramraj, Jivarn Rahaman and Benjamin Eliason declare that this is our own unaided work.
10 October 2014


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M. C. DREW 2006

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