Environmental Services Program

Fecal Coliform Analysis

Fecal Coliform AnalysisFecal coliforms are a portion of the total group of coliform bacteria that are present in the intestines and feces of warm-blooded animals.

The presence of fecal coliform bacteria is an indication that pathogenic bacteria may be present. Fecal coliform analysis is used to determine the degree of pollution and/or the sanitary quality of a water body or wastewater discharge system.

The Water Quality Monitoring Section uses the membrane filter technique which involves filtering a water sample through a membrane to trap bacteria that are present in the sample. This filter is then placed on growth media and incubated at 44.5°C for 24 hours. The combination of selective media and high temperature favors the growth of fecal coliform bacteria while suppressing the growth of non-fecal coliform bacteria.