Quality of a River - Water Quality
Temperature (pg 2 of
Temperature governs other basic properties of
water, such as surface tension and density. Thus,
temperature influences the rate of evaporation,
infiltration, and percolation through sediments.
Temperature also governs the type and rates of
chemical reactions in water.
Temperature influences stream life. It triggers
periods of migration, growth, and dormancy. It
governs the rate of metabolism, chemical processes,
and determines when habitats are suitable for
specific life stages of species.
Water temperature affects the type and abundance
of algae. At the same nutrient level, green algae
tend to dominate at higher temperatures while
diatoms decline. At the highest temperatures,
blue-green algae thrive and often develop into
heavy outbreaks or "blooms" (Dunne
and Leopold, 1978). Artificially higher water
temperature usually results in less desirable types
of algae in water.