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Proficiency Test SYKE 7/2011 - Boreal lake littoral and NE Baltic benthic macroinvertebrate taxonomic identification

ISBN (pdf):978-952-11-4027-3 
Julkaisusarja ja numero:Reports of the Finnish Environment Institute 16/2012 
Kustantaja:Finnish Environment Institute 
Saatavuus (pdf):http://hdl.handle.net/10138/39786 
Tekijät:Kristian Meissner; Katarina Björklöf; Marko Jaale; Katarina Könönen; Jouko Rissanen; Mirja Leivuori  

35.00 €

The Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) conducted a benthic macroinvertebrate taxa identification proficiency test in which 20 participants took part. Participants could choose between both the lake littoral and North-eastern Baltic coastal macroinvertebrate identification test. Participant performance was generally good, with 76% of all participants identifying more than 90% correct and still 60% of all participants identifying 95% or better. Perfect results were achieved by 30% of all participants. On average of a total of 28 taxa in the littoral test and 35 in the Baltic test, on avreage 2.1 taxa were misidentified in the littoral, and 2.8 in the Baltic coastal identification test. A closer analysis of the variation between individual results revealed that mistakes were made for common species in both tests. Overall, only 25 % of all the taxa sent were always correctly identified by all participants. The result clearly demonstrates the need for macroinvertebrate taxonomic identification tests and identified some of the needs for the development of quality assurance in macroinvertebrate identification. Future tests will be conducted on a regular basis for lotic, lentic profundal and littoral and Baltic coastal macroinvertebrates. The inclusion of digitized samples in future tests, increased international and semi-professional (e.g. student) participation are major future aims.