Introduction In the pond water lab experiment, our group has chosen to test the effects of nitrates on a pond community. After a lot of research, we have found that nitrates in a pond community can increase growth rates of plants and some animals. The effects of nitrates include algal blooms, which is when too much food or nutrients are consumed by producers, (i.e. algae) causing them to grow and spread, so they consume all of the dissolved oxygen in the water. Most animals in water like many kinds of fish and some insects need certain levels of dissolved oxygen to live. When it is used up due to algal blooms, they die due to lack of oxygen. It also causes plants who need certain levels of dissolved oxygen to die, so it starves creatures that eat the plants. The safest range of nitrates in an environment is 3-10 PPM. Although too many nitrates can kill them, they still need some small amounts of nitrate. So if there is too little nitrates, then plant life is limited to the amount of food available, giving room for a small, healthy community. The substance enters streams and ponds from fertilizers from farms, animal urine, septic tanks, landfills or agricultural activity. Nitrates are very common. My prediction for this experiment is that the nitrates will cause increased algae growth. Thus providing more food for the creatures in our sample. But since this is a short period of time, I expect the creatures to peak rather than die, because not enough time will pass for the algal bloom process to take place. Purpose Our group is trying to find the effects of increased amounts of nitrates in the pond community. Whether or not it is healthy for creatures living in the environment. In addition, what the results are or the effects of the pollutant on plant life and animal life. Hypothesis I expect for this experiment, that the plant life will thrive more and more with the different levels of nitrates entered into the pond …
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