This paper presents an investigation of the variability of concentrations of Giardia cyst and Cryptosporidium oocyst in two main rivers of Ile-de-France: the Seine (upstream from Paris) and its largest tributary: the Marne. The first goal of this study was to examine risk of presence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia at the drinking water treatment plants' intakes at high concentrations. A second goal was to study the relationship between parasite concentrations and a variety of more easily measured water quality parameters (microbial or physicochemical) which could be used as risk indicators. Two aspects were particularly addressed: the influence of upstream waste water discharges, and the influence of rain fall and river floods on parasite concentrations. Preliminary results of an ongoing study are also presented: they show possible influence of non-point sources on parasite concentrations. Overall results show that parasite sedimentation in rivers is high, urban run-off and resuspension of particles could be at certain times the main factors responsible for peak pathogen levels in raw water.

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