Evaluation of Water Quality and Benthic Macrointervebrates Fauna Relationship Using Principal Component Analysis (PCA): A Case Study of Cameron Highlands Malaysia

Kok Weng Tan, Weng Chee Beh

Abstract


This study applies the Principal Component Analysis (PCA) to evaluate and interpret the relationship between water quality and benthic macro-invertebrates fauna data obtained from Pauh River, Cameron Highlands. Samples were collected once every two months (in February, April, June, August and October 2013) with six chosen sampling stations. Six water quality parameters namely dissolved oxygen (DO), pH, biological oxygen demand (BOD5), chemical oxygen demand (COD), ammonia-nitrogen (NH3-N), total suspended solid (TSS) and heavy metals contents were analyzed according to American Public Health Association (APHA), Standard Methods for Examination of Water and Wastewater (1998). Macro-invertebrates were also sampled using Surber sampler and were identified until their family level. Water Quality Index (WQI) values for all stations were class II except for the station 6 which was recorded as class III. Both the diversity and biotic indices showed decreasing value from the upstream (Station 1) to downstream (Station 6). A total 28 to 31 taxa have been found in Station 1, 2, 3 and 5 (upstream to middle stream). However, only 7 taxa found at station 6 (downstream). Total 31 taxa with an average density 368.28 ind/m2 were found in Station 4 which was highest number of taxa among the monitoring stations. The principal component analysis (PCA) was applied on the dataset, which explained 72.15 % of the total variance of the variables. Three components were extracted in this study. First component was classified as benthic macroinvertebrates which tolerated to low water quality condition and high loading of organic matters. The benthic macro-invertebrates families loaded in second component were sensitive to water environment such as NH3-N, dissolved oxygen (DO), organic matter and stream flow. The benthic macroinvertebrate families loaded in third component were recognized as species which might not tolerate low concentration of dissolved oxygen.  


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/emsd.v5i1.9399

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