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SFS Annual Meeting

Monday, May 20, 2019
14:00 - 15:30

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14:00 - 14:15: / 251 AB POOLS AND FLUXES OF PLASTIC LITTER AT THE WATERSHED SCALE: AN ECOSYSTEM APPROACH

5/20/2019  |   14:00 - 14:15   |  251 AB

POOLS AND FLUXES OF PLASTIC LITTER AT THE WATERSHED SCALE: AN ECOSYSTEM APPROACH Research on plastic litter in global ecosystems is rapidly developing. Rivers are considered a primary source of plastic to oceans, but retention of litter within freshwater ecosystems is not well studied. Emerging research shows plastic litter in freshwaters is determined by the infrastructure, policies, and cultural norms which govern the management of solid waste, wastewater, and water extraction, as well as landscape features designed to retain or transport water. We composed a conceptual model which illustrates the sources and fluxes for plastic litter at the watershed scale that will end with either containment (i.e., landfill), non-containment (i.e., persist as environmental pollution), long term burial, mineralization, recycling back into consumer goods, or export to oceans. We also include fluxes to the atmosphere and freshwater extraction which have not previously been incorporated into conceptual models. We use our framework to illustrate which pathways are best studied and reveal understudied components of the plastic 'life cycle' in freshwaters. This model also offers a framework to prioritize efficient prevention and management strategies for plastic pollution across diverse waste governance scenarios.

Timothy Hoellein (Primary Presenter/Author), Loyola University Chicago, thoellein@luc.edu;


Chelsea Rochman (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Toronto, chelsearochman@gmail.com;


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14:15 - 14:30: / 251 AB ANTHROPOGENIC LITTER IN URBAN STREAMS: SPATIAL DISTRIBUTION OF PLASTIC AND ITS ROLE IN LEAF LITTER BREAKDOWN

5/20/2019  |   14:15 - 14:30   |  251 AB

ANTHROPOGENIC LITTER IN URBAN STREAMS: SPATIAL DISTRIBUTION OF PLASTIC AND ITS ROLE IN LEAF LITTER BREAKDOWN Rivers are considered a source of anthropogenic litter (AL) to oceans, but AL abundance, distribution, and ecosystem effects are rarely measured within streams. Plastic AL is common in debris dams where leaf litter and coarse particulate organic matter accumulate. Debris dams are critical sites of leaf breakdown and habitats for stream biota, but interactions between leaf and plastic litter are unknown. We measured the spatial distribution of AL within 11 debris dam and non-debris dam pairs, spaced ~1 km apart in urban streams in Chicago and Baltimore. We measured leaf breakdown and analyzed the composition of macroinvertebrate and microbial (i.e., bacterial, fungal, algal) communities in 3 litter bag treatments: leaves alone, plastic alone, and mixed. Results show higher AL density, particularly plastic, in debris dams than non-debris dam sites. Plastic did not reduce leaf breakdown rates or affect macroinvertebrate consumer communities. However, biofilm communities on leaves and plastic were different, and remained distinct when in mixed leaf-plastic litter bags. These data show that plastic litter sustains novel microbial communities and follows the spatial distribution and downstream transport patterns of naturally occurring leaf litter.

Lisa Kim (Primary Presenter/Author), Loyola University Chicago, lkim1@luc.edu;


Samuel Dunn (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago , sdunn3@luc.edu;


Rachel McNeish (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), California State University Bakersfield, rachel.e.mcneish@gmail.com;


John Kelly (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, Jkelly7@luc.edu;


Martin Berg (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, mberg@luc.edu;


Timothy Hoellein (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, thoellein@luc.edu;


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14:30 - 14:45: / 251 AB THE TRANSPORT AND RETENTION OF MICROPLASTIC FIBERS IN EXPERIMENTAL STREAMS WITH VARYING BENTHIC SUBSTRATE, DISCHARGE, AND BENTHIC BIOFILM COLONIZATION

5/20/2019  |   14:30 - 14:45   |  251 AB

THE TRANSPORT AND RETENTION OF MICROPLASTIC FIBERS IN EXPERIMENTAL STREAMS WITH VARYING BENTHIC SUBSTRATE, DISCHARGE, AND BENTHIC BIOFILM COLONIZATION Microplastics (particles <5mm) represent emerging pollutants of concern in ecosystems worldwide. Data on microplastic transport in lotic ecosystems is needed to assess the role streams play in global microplastic budgets. We adapted spiraling metrics designed to measure particle transport to quantify microplastic retention in experimental streams at the Notre Dame Linked Experimental Ecosystem Facility (ND-LEEF). We explored how benthic substrate size and configuration (cobble, pea-gravel, sand, mixed substrate), stream discharge (high, low), and benthic biofilm (established colonization, post-scouring) affect microplastic deposition using a fully-crossed design. In three replicate reaches per treatment, we released pulses of microplastic fibers and collected synchronized water samples downstream. Afterwards, we collected benthic biofilm and sediment samples. We quantified microplastics from water, biofilm, and substrate using a dissecting microscope. Late colonization biofilms increased microplastic retention in streams with larger substrate (cobble and pea-gravel) by approximately 300% but did not influence retention in the substrates containing sand (sand and mixed). These results provide insights into the factors that influence microplastic retention in streams and will be useful for parameterizing models that can scale microplastic depositional patterns to larger rivers and over longer time scales.

Anna Vincent (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, avincent1@luc.edu;


Arial Shogren (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Michigan State University, shogrena@msu.edu;


Martha Dee (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Notre Dame, mdee@nd.edu;


Jennifer L. Tank (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Notre Dame, tank.1@nd.edu;


John Kelly (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, Jkelly7@luc.edu;


Timothy Hoellein (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, thoellein@luc.edu;


Elizabeth Berg (Primary Presenter/Author), Loyola University Chicago, eberg@luc.edu;


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14:45 - 15:00: / 251 AB PLASTIC IN URBAN STREAMS: DISTRIBUTION, TRANSPORT, AND INFLUENCE ON BIOFILM COMMUNITY COMPOSITION

5/20/2019  |   14:45 - 15:00   |  251 AB

PLASTIC IN URBAN STREAMS: DISTRIBUTION, TRANSPORT, AND INFLUENCE ON BIOFILM COMMUNITY COMPOSITION Plastic litter is accumulating in ecosystems worldwide. The capacity for plastic to undergo physical, chemical, and biological processes within freshwaters is understudied, and is a critical component of global plastic budgets and potential management interventions. We adapted organic matter ‘spiraling’ methods to measure microplastic transport in 3 Chicago-area streams. Microplastic and fine particulate organic matter (FPOM) abundance were quantified by habitat (surface water, water column, benthos). We calculated downstream velocity, index of retention, turnover rate, and spiraling length for microplastic and FPOM. Downstream velocity and indices of retention for microplastic and FPOM were similar. However, microplastic showed lower turnover rates and longer spiraling lengths relative to FPOM, attributed to the slow estimates of plastic biodegradation rates. We also measured the influence of plastic polymer type on microbial community composition and metabolic function in streams spanning a nested geographic gradient. We predicted that the chemical and physical properties of plastic litter would select for similar biofilm communities across large geographic distances with low taxonomic diversity relative to natural surfaces. These projects will provide insight on the pervasive nature of plastic pollution and contribute to global plastic budgets.

Anna Vincent (Primary Presenter/Author), Loyola University Chicago, avincent1@luc.edu;


Raul Lazcano (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, rlazcanogonzalez@luc.edu;


Samuel Dunn (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago , sdunn3@luc.edu;


John Kelly (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, Jkelly7@luc.edu;


Timothy Hoellein (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, thoellein@luc.edu;


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15:00 - 15:15: / 251 AB MICROPLASTIC IN AQUATIC FOOD WEBS: MUSEUM SPECIMENS AND INGESTION EXPERIMENTS REVEAL CONTROLS ON MICROPLASTIC INGESTION BY FRESHWATER FISH

5/20/2019  |   15:00 - 15:15   |  251 AB

MICROPLASTIC IN AQUATIC FOOD WEBS: MUSEUM SPECIMENS AND INGESTION EXPERIMENTS REVEAL CONTROLS ON MICROPLASTIC INGESTION BY FRESHWATER FISH Plastic is pervasive in modern economies and ecosystems. Early research suggests freshwater fish commonly ingest microplastic (particles < 5 mm), which may influence fish digestive tissues, but no studies have examined historical patterns in microplastic consumption or rates of microplastic retention in fish. We measured microplastic in digestive tissue of specimens collected and preserved over the last century (Field Museum, Chicago). We selected Micropterus salmoides (largemouth bass), Notropis stramineus (sand shiner), Ictalurus punctatus (channel catfish), and Neogobius melanostomus (round goby) because each was well represented in the museum collection, with specimens from urban rivers. Specimens from 1900-2018 showed increases in microplastic concentration from the 1950's to present. In a second project, we collected round gobies from Lake Michigan in Chicago to conduct feeding experiments to measure microplastic ingestion and retention rates. The majority of microplastic was excreted within 72 hours of ingestion. Microplastic retention in fish also increased in treatments with repeated daily microplastic exposures compared to a single exposure. Results will aid in understanding ecological interactions of microplastic and freshwater fish, informing further work on the movement of microplastic in aquatic food webs.

Rae McNeish (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), California State University Bakersfield, rae.mcneish@gmail.com;


Timothy Hoellein (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Loyola University Chicago, thoellein@luc.edu;


Loren Hou (Primary Presenter/Author), Loyola University Chicago, Lhou1@luc.edu;


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15:15 - 15:30: / 251 AB INGESTION OF MICROPLASTICS CAN INHIBIT FILTRATION RATES IN QUAGGA MUSSLES (DREISSENA BUGENSIS)

5/20/2019  |   15:15 - 15:30   |  251 AB

INGESTION OF MICROPLASTICS CAN INHIBIT FILTRATION RATES IN QUAGGA MUSSLES (DREISSENA BUGENSIS) The impacts of microplastic particulates in freshwater organisms have been largely unexplored despite abundant plastic accumulation in these systems. We investigated the potential for ingestion of plastic particles by benthic filter feeding quagga mussles (Dreissena bugensis) and associated toxicity exhibited through impacts on mortality, filtration rate, reproduction and oxygen consumption. For this purpose, quagga mussels were exposed to four treatments ranging from 0.0- 0.8 g/L of a high density florescent red polyethylene powder in the size range of 10-45 ?m for 24 hours, and the targeted endpoints were quantified. Overall, results suggest rapid microplastic clearance from the water column by filtering, with ingestion, identified by several micrograms of microplastics in their digestive tract. Microplastics were also found in the gills. Correspondingly, filtration rate decreased at the higher concentrations tested. Despite large-scale ingestion, plastic exposure did not affect survivorship, reproduction rates or oxygen consumption. This research suggests that microplastics can impair feeding in filter feeding organisms, potentially resulting in a reduction of overall fitness over time due to a decrease in consumption associated with microplastic exposure. Further investigation into the effects of plastic exposure to freshwater organisms is warranted.

Donna Kashian (Primary Presenter/Author), Wayne State University, dkashian@wayne.edu;


Anna Boegehold (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Wayne State University, az1079@wayne.edu;


Kishore Gopalakrishnan (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Wayne State University, kishore.gopalakrishnan@wayne.edu;


Adam Pedersen (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Wayne State University, adam.pedersen@wayne.edu;


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