Submitted to: North American Journal of Aquaculture
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: November 8, 2005
Publication Date: July 1, 2006
Citation: Pearson, P.R., Green, B.W. 2006. A device to continuously monitor dissolved oxygen and temperature at user-selected depths and locations in culture ponds. North American Journal of Aquaculture. 68:253-255.
Interpretive Summary: The free-floating unit was constructed from PVC pipe and high density polyethylene (HDPE) to provide a stable platform for deployment of sensors used to collect dissolved oxygen concentration, water column temperature, or other water quality parameters. The data collection units performed well in field tests conducted during actual harvest operations on a channel catfish farm, and on a study performed in small research ponds.
The unit is comprised of a pontoon that holds a data collection device and rechargeable battery in a weather-resistant enclosure, and an adjustable column that supports two sets of sensors. By adjusting the length of specific sections of the column, sensors can collect data at user-selected depths relative to the water surface.
A 2004 field study conducted during actual channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus harvests, and a small-scale research study conducted in 2005, required continuous collection of dissolved oxygen concentration and temperature at two depths in the water column. The on-farm study required data collection in grading nets loaded with high densities of channel catfish, whereas the small-scale study was conducted in one-tenth-acre channel catfish research ponds. Commercially available monitoring units did not meet study requirements, so a free-floating data collection unit comprised of a combination of state-of-the-art sensor and datalogger technology and readily available materials was developed. The data collection units proved durable under conditions existing in both loaded grading nets and in small research ponds.