Services We Provide


Study Design

New Zealand mudsnails Timberline Aquatics, Inc. strives to cater our study design and techniques to the specific requirements of individual studies. We understand the unique differences that may exist among aquatic environments, and the specialized objectives for specific studies of these environments. It is our goal to provide the highest quality scientific results to meet the objectives of each study.

Benthic Macroinvertebrate Sampling

Timberline Aquatics, Inc. is familiar with a variety of benthic macroinvertebrate sampling techniques for qualitative (D-frame net, kicknet, etc.) and quantitative (Modified Hess Sampler, Surber Sampler, artificial substrates, etc.) sampling. Protocols are available for each technique. All benthic macroinvertebrate samples are preserved in an 80% ethanol solution.

Benthic Macroinvertebrate Sorting and Identification

sorting samples At Timberline Aquatics, Inc. we believe that consistency and repetition are the basis of quality scientific studies. The level of identification should be determined by the objectives of the study and other studies to which the information will be compared. We have a large collection of species keys that include the most current taxonomic changes. In most cases we follow the EPA protocols which include identification to the “lowest practical taxonomic level”. Our high standards of quality control require that a secondary taxonomist check though 10% of all identified samples and 100% of all sorted samples. Timberline Aquatics, Inc. sorts and identifies more than 80,000 macroinvertebrates annually.

Data Analysis and Interpretation

At Timberline Aquatics, Inc. we take pride in our working knowledge of indices (metrics) that use benthic macroinvertebrate data to describe aquatic conditions. These metrics include those described in the EPA’s Rapid Bioassessment Protocols and numerous others that are designed to detect a variety of specific disturbances. Timberline Aquatics, Inc. has an extensive library of publications that describe the response of benthic macroinvertebrates to various disturbances. We feel that appropriate citation of current and historic literature strengthens the validity of our interpretation of benthic macroinvertebrate data.

Report Preparation

Report preparation at Timberline Aquatics, Inc. is conducted with the specific objectives and requirements of the client in mind. Reports are prepared to give adequate explanation of the results – we want our clients to understand the results in the same way that we do.