LWRRDC Final Report: Quality assurance of identifications for the MRHI state/territory bioassessment program

1997

Internal Report 258
Environmental Research Institute of the Supervising Scientist
Supervising Scientist Division
Department of the Environment

About the report

Project number MDR16 was developed as part of the Monitoring River Health Initiative (MRHI) to provide initial training and taxonomic keys for the identification of aquatic macroinvertebrates by State and Territory agencies and to provide external quality assurance to ensure a high standard of taxonomic identification. To this end, the Murray-Darling Freshwater Research Centre (MDFRC) conducted a taxonomic workshop in the early stages of the MRHI and all agencies responsible for invertebrate identification have had 5% of their identifications checked externally by either the MDFRC or the Environmental Research Institute of the Supervising Scientist (ERISS). Feedback from the QA process to agencies has often resulted in the reduction of identification error rates to acceptable levels. Non-conformance to specified taxonomic levels, lack of in-house training by agencies for new staff and overall lack of taxonomic experience were +identified as key factors leading to error.