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Sampling Tree Swallow Eggs and Nestlings TVA-KIF-SOP-28

March 2010


Field Preparation

The Field Team Leader is responsible for implementation of the field collection process. The Field Team Leader ensures that samples are safely collected using sterile procedures to prevent cross-contamination and that associated data are accurate and well documented. The Field Team Leader ensures that the following activities have been completed prior to sampling initiation.

    • a.

      Provide a summary (or JSA) of potential hazards and appropriate safety equipment to the field collection team.

    • b.

      Identify sampling and documentation roles for personnel and thoroughly describe the sampling process.

    • c.

      Distribute appropriate sampling and documentation equipment to the field collection team.

    • d.

      Log collection activities in bound field logbooks using an indelible-ink pen for entries. Use permanent markers for hand-written labels on specimen bags and holding container labels.

    • e.

      Work with appropriate personnel to produce computerized shipping labels.

    • f.

      Ensure that QA and quality control (QC) protocols are followed.

    • g.

      Maintain Chain-of-Custody (COC) documentation in accordance with the Field Documentation SOP (TVA-KIF-SOP-06).

      • 3.3

        Sampling Methods for Tree Swallow Eggs Beginning in April, nest boxes are monitored weekly to identify initiation of nest construction. After noting the initiation of egg laying, the sampling is initiated by the sampling personnel by following the procedures listed below.

        • a.

          As tree swallows typically lay one egg per day, monitor the nest every two days until all eggs are laid; as evident by two consecutive monitoring days with no additional eggs (nests usually contain four to seven eggs total). Complete the Tree Swallow Nest Box Monitoring form provided in Table 2 (form also available on TVA Kingston SharePoint drive at http://sharepoint.tva.gov/sites/oer/Kingston Event/ KRP/default.aspx under Environmental/Forms and Templates) including description of nest material.

        • b.

          Note the number of eggs (clutch size) in each nest box on form.

        • c.

          Collect one egg at random from 15 nest boxes at each study area while wearing nitrile gloves.

Note: If only one egg is observed in the nest, do not collect the egg.

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This document, in part or in whole, is the property of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) for sole use by TVA employees or TVA contractors or as otherwise consented to in writing by TVA.

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