Question: Measuring pollen

Yeipi asked on March 26, 2018 18:36
310 | 2 answers | #16021


Dear Community Members, Does anyone know if there are OScH tools to measure pollen in air? (or proxys/surrogates...). Anyone interested in working on one?

Thanks!

JP.

__ pollen.mp4



5 Comments

Pollen seems to be around pm10. are you interested in measuring only pollen (yikes! hard!) or generally all particulate matter around that size? Here's a general page about monitoring particulate matter: https://publiclab.org/pm-monitoring that also links to https://publiclab.org/wiki/visual-pm which might be interesting because your lead photo indicates you can see the pollen!

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Can you identify pollen by shape?

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@liz: the size can go from 10 to 200um, but most pollens of interest might be under 50 um. It could be a good assumption that on high pollen season, most particles under that range might be pollen associated??http://www-saps.plantsci.cam.ac.uk/pollen/index2.htm @warren the shapes can be very distinct. Maybe if we know the shape of the pollen grains that are predominant in our city, we could do something base on shape? https://www.researchgate.net/publication/275367002_Morphological_studies_of_the_pollen_grains_for_some_hydrophytes_in_coastal_Mediterranean_lakes_Egypt/figures?lo=1 Thank you both!

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Wow that's really cool @Yeipi - do you have a microscope? Are you following the Community Microscope project at https://publiclab.org/micro ?

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So cool!

Microphotographs-showing-the-morphological-shapes-for-pollen-grains-of-emergent.jpg


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2 Answers

Three links which may be of interest: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/health-17944765/met-office-how-to-count-pollen http://www.burkard.co.uk/7dayst.htm https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2749532/ MichaelG.


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Here's an answer from Clarke Knight who's studying pollen accumulation rates at Berkeley:: "Pollen is not typically 'measured' in air, per se. Pollen can be collected with terrestrial traps (often made of pvc pipes) or moss pollsters. Traps would be buried flush with the ground and pollen could be collected over the course of a season. Pollen can also be collected from lakes by taking lake core sediments. Because pollen is microscopic (10-150 microns typically), you would also need additional equipment to sort out the pollen and then count it."


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