Biotic/multimetric indices

     The development and practice of biological evaluation systems for fluvial ecosystems in Spain started along the 80s, based on the use of biotic indices (Alba-Tercedor et al. 1992). This type of indices follows the established principle that communities change in order to different types of perturbation. Taxa that form a community present different tolerances to pollution, and they could be characterized by values inside a range. The objective of these indices is to provide a classification of the biological quality, giving a unique value for a community.


     The adaptation for the Iberian Peninsula of the British BMWP/ASPT, the IBMWP/IASPT index (Iberian Bio-Monitoring Working Party; Alba-Tercedor et al. 2004), and formerly known as BMWP’ (Alba-Tercedor & Sánchez-Ortega 1988) is the most widespread tool among the scientifics and managers for the ecological status assessment of the Spanish streams. However, due to the publication of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) several multimetric indices have been developed, such as the ICM-11a.


     Nowadays the web application MEDPACS allows to calculate both the biotic index IBMWP/IASPT and the multimetric index ICM-11a for the whole Spain. In this way, it could be applied the thresholds of the ecological status gradient (High, Good, Moderate, Poor and Bad) published by the Spanish law (Instrucción de Planificación, B.O.E. 22-IX-2008), as well as the original thresholds of the IBMWP/IASPT index.


Web application MEDPACS - Multimetric indices

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