Koperski, P. 2023. It is not only data—Freshwater invertebrates misused in biological monitoring. Animals 13(16), 2570.

The article presents and discusses the issues of the use of free-living invertebrates to assess the ecological status of freshwater environments with different methods of biological monitoring. Invertebrates are excluded from ethical consideration in the procedures of environmental protection, which results in the killing of many more individuals during sampling than necessary. Biomonitoring is used as a routine method for environmental protection that results in the cruel death of even millions of aquatic animals annually. In many cases, the mortality of animals used in such types of activities has been shown as excessive, e.g., because the vast majority die due to unnecessary subsampling procedures. Improperly planned and conducted procedures which result in excessive mortality have or may have a negative impact on the environment and biodiversity. Their existence as sensitive beings is reduced to an information function; they become only data useful for biomonitoring purposes. The main problem when trying to determine the mortality of invertebrates due to biomonitoring activities and its impact on natural populations seems to be the lack of access to raw data presenting how many animals were killed during sampling.

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