Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biology and Microbiology


The Water Quality Act of 1965 sets forth the national policies for water pollution prevention, control, and abatement for interstate waters. This act requires all states to prepare water quality standards for the interstate waters within their boundaries. In compliance with this requirement, the "Water Quality Standards for the Surface Waters of South Dakota" was adopted in 1967, thus establishing official parameters of water quality for all surface waters in the state. These standards take into account the three principal sources of pollution in the state which are municipal, industrial, and agricultural. Of particular interest is the contamination of these waters by municipal and agricultural wastes, which are the primary sources of bacterial contamination. The most significant contamination is that by pathogenic bacteria such as Salmonella. In order to determine whether a particular body of water meets the standards for water quality, there must be methods available to quantitate the bacterial pollutants. Total coliform, fecal coliform and fecal streptococcus densities have been used extensively as measures of bacterial pollution. It has been assumed that these counts also give an indication of the presence of pathogens. However, the ubiquity of these indicator organisms in surface waters, which are apparently free of dangerous pathogens for man and domestic animals such as Salmonella spp., tends to nullify the value of these tests when applied to untreated water. Therefore, standard methods to quantitate pathogens present in surface waters are essential for positive determination of water quality. Quantitation of Salmonella from lake and river water is the primary purpose of this study.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Water -- Pollution



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University