We are doing our bioassay with an algae, S. capricornutum. This is a beautiful green algae which to some looks like a crescent moon, to others it looks like a Cheeto/Ostbåge. Our plan, with the help of S. capricornutum, is to see which nutrient is growth limiting in the water we are evaluating. This will aid us in our final suggestion of a multifunctional wetland layout, which will affect the biodiversity. Plants/animals require certain conditions to thrive, and by knowing what nutrient is limiting, we will be able to suggest plants for maximum biodiversity (rather than it being a random pick).
Back to the bioassay. We used S. capricornutum since it is a well mapped, standardized specie. The experiment is done with 2 different nutrients and 3 different combinations (Nitrogen, phosphorous, nitrogen + phosphorous), and a control. They will grow at optimum growth conditions. A sample from each community will be collected every second day, fixated with formaline, and stored for now. We will be able to follow the growth of the algae due to its increase in cell numbers which will (hopefully) be measured with a flow cytometer. We have Elin Lindehoff and her colleagues at Linnaeus University to thank for the help with this, and for the opportunity to develop some further skills!