A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF TWO BIOLOGICAL MONITORING SYSTEMS IN ASSESSING WATER QUALITY: A CASE OF RIVER BIRIRA, SHEEMA DISTRICT, UGANDA
Journal: Water Conservation and Management (WCM)
Author: Edson Turibamwe, Rapheal Wangalwa
Print ISSN : 2523-5664
Online ISSN : 2523-5672
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited
River Birira stretches through Kitagata town council and near Kitagata hot springs in southwestern Uganda. These areas receive an inflow of people that utilize the hot springs because of the belief of healing associated with the water. This has led to increased human activities along river Birira, which may negatively impact on the ecological integrity of the river. A number of countries have developed biological monitoring systems to assess the water quality of rivers and streams, however non has been developed specifically for Uganda. This study therefore aimed to assess the water quality of river Birira and determine the compatibility and usability of Biological Monitoring Working Party (BMWP) and Tanzania River Scoring System (TARISS) biological monitoring systems in a Ugandan setting. In this study, four sampling sites were selected basing on human activities taking place along river Birira. The sites were assessed for both physico-chemical and biological parameters using standard methods. In this study 9 physicochemical parameters were used in the computation of water quality index (WQI). Findings of this study indicated that sites in close proximity with the bathing pool of Kitagata hot springs were severely impacted and had undesirable water quality. Results also showed that the water of river Birira is generally unsuitable for human consumption, therefore, needs thorough treatment before consumption and domestic use. This study further revealed that both BMWP and TARISS monitoring systems give similar deductions about the water quality of river Birira. Therefore, any one of the monitoring systems can be adopted in assessing the water quality of the River.