News New publication by GTI alumnus, Dr O. H. Odountan, on the biomonitoring of lakes in West Africa

The article is published in the January 2019 issue of Hydrobiologia. It is entitled 'Biomonitoring of lakes using macroinvertebrates: recommended indices and metrics for use in West Africa and developing countries'.

Release date 01/03/2019
Geographical coverage West Africa, Benin
Keywords biomonitoring, ecological indicator, multimetric indices, lakes, developing countries

The article is co-authored by Olaniran Hamed Odountan, Luc Janssens de Bisthoven, Youssouf Abou and Hilde Eggermont.

It is published in Hydrobiologia (2019) 826:1–23.


Lake systems are under heavy pressure impacting on their biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. This is especially acute in West Africa and developing countries which lack resources and technical capacities for waste disposal, water purification, as well as sufficient scientific  capacities for biomonitoring and integrated management. The preservation, monitoring and improvement of lake quality in these countries are, however, of paramount importance. Throughout the developed world, an array of indicators and multimetric indices have been incorporated into lake biomonitoring and assessment.
Here, we assess the numerous procedures, metrics and indices using macroinvertebrates as indicators for lake quality and assess applicability in West African lakes and in developing countries more generally. We propose a framework for macroinvertebrate-based monitoring adapted to these countries, including recommendations for developing new indices and adapting tolerance scores of taxa to local conditions.
This work underlines the importance of macroinvertebrates for biomonitoring of lake health in West African lakes and developing countries more generally.

Corresponding author: Dr O. H. Odountan / e-mail:

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