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Name: _____________________________
Harmful Algal Bloom Lab
Brainstorm with your partner! What are some environmental conditions that can lead to growth of harmful algal blooms?
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, climate change is predicted to change many environmental
conditions that could affect the natural properties of fresh and marine waters both in the US and worldwide.
Changes in these factors could favor the growth of harmful algal blooms and habitat changes such that marine
HABs can invade and occur in freshwater. An increase in the occurrence and intensity of harmful algal blooms may
negatively impact the environment, human health, and the economy for communities across the US and around the
In order to study the effects of climate change on algae growth, you and your partner will design your own
experiment. You will focus on one of the contributing factors of Global Climate Change, which could include light,
temperature, acidity, CO2, nutrient availability, salinity, or a creative example that you and your partner pick. You
will set up your “bioreactor bottle.” This treatment will be compared to the class control bioreactor. The
bioreactors will be identical in every way except for the condition you are testing. Once set up, you will record
results each day by comparing the observed color of your bottle and the class control to the pictures of previously
recorded optical measurements to determine the amount of algal growth
Directions to get you started:
1. Choose what variable you will use in your experiment. ______________________________________________
2. Gather your supplies
- 2- bottles What size are you using? _______________________________
- Stock algae solution for each bottle as per chart
- Nutrient solution (liquid miracle grow) for each bottle as per chart. Serial Dilution of
40mg/L Nitrogen content (40% Nitrogen content in solution)
- Determined amount of your variable
3. Label your bottles “Control” and “Sample” and your period number, and your group member’s names
4. Fill both bottles ¾ with de-chlorinated water
5. Using the chart below add the algae and nutrient solutions according to your bottle size.
Size of bottle
16.9 oz
20 oz
Algae Solution
Nutrient Solution
6. Add a set amount of your variable
7. Shake and compare your bottle and the control to the photograph to determine your starting point.
8. Record these results under Day 1.
Over the next 4 school days you will record your data
on the chart provided with your lab write-up. You
must shake your bottle before comparing it to the
picture. If you are using a colored bottle, you should
remove some of the water in order to compare the
color accurately.
Be sure to fill out your lab write-up as you progress with the lab each day. Each member of your group will
need to submit their own individual lab-write up. They should not be identical. Please do your own work
and use your own words.
Name: _____________________________
(A good title
your project and makes people want to read Your
about it Name:
to find out your results!)
(Why did you conduct this experiment and what can the world learn by its results?)
(This is a very detailed list of exactly what you used so that others could replicate this experiment.)
(Tell your reader a very detailed, step by step explanation of exactly what you did.)
Control Concentration mg/L
Sample Concentration mg/L
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
(Look at your results. Do you notice any patterns? Compare/contrast the results from the control group to the sample?
Do you see any similarities or differences? Write about them here.)
*Analysis and Conclusion:
(What caused the results that you saw? What could you do differently to make the experiment better?
How can this research be applied to the real world?)
*Items with this mark must be completed in your own words. If you and your partner have the same thing you will
not receive points for these sections!