Barcode Long Island Team PollutANTS Patrol
Barcode Long Island
Research Topic:
Biodiversity & trade
Taxonomic Group Studied:
Animals: Invertebrate


Analyzing the biodiversity of Formicinae ants as potential indicators of toxic heavy metal pollutants in the soil adjacent to th
Katherine Cardinale, Katherine Brennan
Cold Spring Harbor HS, Suffolk
Jamie Lawlor


The purpose of this project is to determine whether heavy metal pollution is present in the sediment outside of the Long Island Sound by using the biodiversity of Formicinae ant populations as bioindicators. By doing this, we can identify contaminated sediment on Long Island that can negatively affect both the organisms living in this environment, especially humans living and coming in contact with the coastline. Heavy metals, specifically lead, zinc, and mercury, are extremely toxic to human health. If the Long Island Sound is polluted with heavy metal, the ground surrounding the body of water may also be contaminated due to water seepage, which will lead to decreased biodiversity of Formicinae ants in the area. Ants will be used because the Long Island Sound is an area inhabited by both ants and humans, and ants can measure the quality of a coastal environment. Thus, it can be determined whether the environment and its organisms negatively affect the health of humans coming in contac


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