The effects of road crossings on fish communities have been extensively studied; yet little attention has been given to macroinvertebrate communities. This study evaluated physical stream characteristics, water quality, and aquatic-insect richness from above and below road crossings of low-order streams in the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas. Fifteen road crossings were sampled during October and November 2005. Erosion was significantly higher below road crossings than above. Sites downstream of road crossings had significantly lower pH and significantly higher turbidity than sites upstream of road crossings. Despite differences in water quality and habitat, there was no apparent difference in aquatic-insect richness from above and below road crossings based on the EPT index, suggesting that road crossings did not act as barriers to insect movement. The water-quality differences observed were well within acceptable limits and likely not biologically important.
Neal, J. Wesley; Harris, Nathan J.; Kumaran, Sathyanand; Behler, David A.; Lang, Thomas J.; Port, Paul R.; Melandri, Benjamin; and Batten, G.
"Comparison of Aquatic-Insect Habitat and Diversity Above and Below Road Crossings in Low-Order Streams,"
Journal of the Arkansas Academy of Science: Vol. 61
, Article 13.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uark.edu/jaas/vol61/iss1/13