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The surface area of submersed macrophytes is often viewed from different perspectives such as substrate for colonization by periphyton, or protective cover for fishes. Consequently, several different methods have been used to measure it. We describe a method for measuring that area with an electronic surface area meter, a device that yields, for large samples of macrophytes, measurements in units of square meters of plant surface area per square meter of bottom. Unpreserved macrophytes, pressed gently between plastic sheets, are passed through the sensing head of the meter, which electronically scans and measures their surface area. The technique is several times faster and more precise than previous methods even for plants with finely dissected leaves.
Additional Publication Details
Comparison of methods for measuring surface area of submersed aquatic macrophytes