Biology Research Paper - Corophium Volutator

Topics: Sample size, Sampling, Normal distribution Pages: 13 (2387 words) Published: December 12, 2012
Comparing Sampling and Measuring Techniques with Corophium volutator in the Mud Flats of Wolfville, Nova Scotia.

Cale Duffus; Student ID: 100116754


In the introduction of this paper, importance of sampling and precise measuring is discussed and how important it is to biology. The sample of this study is also presented in the introduction, describing some characteristics of the organism. As well our purposes and hypotheses are stated. On how the study was actually done is located in the methods section carefully instructed. The techniques used were with the sieve method and the opportunistic search. All significant values calculated are presented through 7 tables in the results section. A variety of statistical analysis was used, including means, variance, confidence limits and T-tests. It was found that there is a significant difference in calculated means from the sieve method and opportunistic method. It was also found that there is no significant difference in the measuring techniques involving in the field versus interprojected scope.


As biology being the study of all living things, it is crucial that sampling is done properly and

precise in order to study the population. Since every single organism in the population cannot be

captured, random samples of the population are taken and close and relevant values to the actual

population of the sample captured are used. This is called sampling, and with this, information of a

population which concerns its function, structure or even conservation work can be gathered. When

sampling, it is important that it is completely random and unbiased. This is because the values desired

are to reflect the whole population, and with a random sample representing the population this is more

attainable versus a biased sample (e.g. sampling an area where only larger mud shrimp supposedly

live). When measuring an organism, it is important that measuring is accurate and consistent, as this

will build a foundation of precise values for the population itself. In this study sampling was used in

order to determine mean body lengths of a population, and than compared the techniques that they were

measured with. The population that was sampled are the species Corophium volutator, or more

commonly known as mud shrimp. They have been given this name due to their living grounds, mud

flats of the northern Atlantic Ocean (Veronika Gerdol & R.G. Hughes, 1994). They are a species of

amphipod crustacean in the family Corophiidae (M.J. De Kluijver & S.S. Igalsuo, 1999). Their physical

description is simple, as they are whitish with brown markings and their heads bear two sets of

antennae, the first pair being small and point forwards, while the second set are much longer and

thicker (Ken Neal & Penny Avant, 2006). Before conducting this study, it was assumed that there is

no significant difference in the means calculated by using the sieve method or opportunistic sampling

method of sampling. As well it was assumed that there is no significant variation between the two

measuring techniques. The purpose of this study was to compare the effectiveness of two sampling

techniques in determining mean body length of the Corophium volutator population and to determine if

either technique shows sampling bias. Also, the other purpose of this study was to compare two

measuring techniques to see if one is more accurate than the other.

Materials & Methods

To perform the study on Corophium volutator, an accessible site extremely rich of

the sample was selected. This study area was a site in the mud flats in Wolfville (New Minas Basin),

Nova Scotia. Two collection techniques were used.

Firstly, the sieve method was used. To begin with this method, mud from the mud flats was
collected using a shovel. Only the first 2-3 inches from the surface of the mud was...
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