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Best Practices for Sharing Benthics Data

The Water Quality eXchange (WQX) Benthic Macroinvertebrate Best Practices Guide was created to guide organizations in submitting benthic macroinvertebrate data to WQX. It was also created to make submitting benthic macroinvertebrate datasets more user-friendly, promote consistency when submitting data, and to maximize the extent to which data can be reused. The Best Practices Guide provides recommended approaches to addressing eight areas of concern with respect to documenting benthic macroinvertebrate data. These include recommendations on (1) assemblage sampled name, (2) biological intent, (3) habitat selection method, (4) collection effort, (5) sample collection equipment name, (6) net mesh size, (7) characteristic name, (8) target count, (9) proportion sample processed, (10) target taxonomic levels, (11) subject taxonomic name, (12) subject taxonomic name user supplied, and (13) uploading QA/QC documents. Each metadata element is important to ensure the reusability of the data for secondary data users and allows data users to make informed comparisons between disparate data sources.   This Guide is designed to be used with the 3.0 version of WQX.

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