All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Robert Angus

Advisory Committee Members

Ken Marion

Robert Stiles

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Master of Science (MS) College of Arts and Sciences


During the fall of 2005 and spring of 2006, habitat assessments and rapid bioassessments were conducted at six sites on 100 m reaches on Five Mile Creek in Jefferson County, Alabama and two sites on neighboring rural streams that were used as references. Habitat scores and index of biotic integrity (IBI) scores for the fish communities were calculated for all sites. The IBI scores on Five Mile Creek did not compare well with one of the reference streams and suggest impairment. The habitat scores for the Five Mile Creek sites were similar to the scores of the reference streams. The IBI scores and habitat scores for the Five Mile Creek sites were not significantly correlated, suggesting that the impairment of the fish populations is due mainly to poor water quality. IBI scores were highest at the three downstream sites, furthest away from urbanization and industrialization. Land use data on the surrounding area of Five Mile Creek illustrated that there was a much higher proportion of the land designated as residential and industrial in the upper regions of the stream. This implies that urban and industrial pollution are the main sources of water quality impairment on Five Mile Creek. This study has provided groups actively involved in river restoration efforts, such as the Black Warrior Riverkeeper, the Black Warrior River Clean Water Partnership, and the Five Mile Creek Greenway Partnership, with baseline data on the current biological status of the creek. This baseline can be used in subsequent years as a comparison during iii re-assessments to determine if restoration efforts currently in progress are achieving their desired effects.



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