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Aquatic Macroinvertebrates and Urbanization: Exploring urbanization’s effect on leaf litter decomposition in six streams of Puerto Rico using R

Author(s): John McIntosh

Virginia Commonwealth University

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Urbanization effects stream ecosystems by introducing pollutants to the streams.. This has detrimental effects on the life of the streams such as the aquatic macroinvertebrates who are in charge of leaf litter decomposition.

Licensed under CC Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International according to these terms

Version 1.0 - published on 11 May 2021 doi:10.25334/RBFE-6Q75 - cite this


In this lesson, the student will re-create a portion of an analysis done in the supporting paper of this Qubes Lesson. They will look at how the leaf litter decomposition rates differ between six streams in Puerto Rico, and from there, build their own dataset based off the results from their linear regressions. This will allow the student to re-import their dataset into R to due one last linear regression: linking urbanization (as a measure of impervious surface area) to the leaf litter decomposition rate that each stream experienced. This will allow the student to build inferences on the ecological interaction happening here and to think critically about why the decomposition rates change due to urbanization and actions that can be taken to mitigate this problem.

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