Characteristics of a healthy stream
Temperatures and oxygen levels.
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Chemicals are used for manufacturing, pest control, normal household use, and agriculture, forest, and city operations. They are intended to be safely handled and controlled, but occasionally find their way into streams. The result can be catastrophic to the point of killing everything living in a stream. Lower levels of toxic chemicals can have less catastrophic effects but still can be considered dangerous to humans who drink the water and eat the fish. It is important during a stream health assessment to determine whether these toxic chemicals are likely to be in the water by looking at potential sources. Once it is determined that a source of this toxic chemical is likely to exist, a stream assessment must focus on testing for the presence and level of that particular toxic chemical.
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For example, drinking water must be free of pathogens . Concentrations of harmful chemicals must be below the standards. Temperature, dissolved oxygen , metals, and chemical contaminants must be at levels that do not harm fish and other stream-dwelling organisms.
The water-quality component of a stream health assessment addresses six general categories: sediment , nutrients, bacteria, temperature, dissolved oxygen, and toxic chemicals.
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Our Point of veiw
bacteria is used as an indicator of the sanitary quality of a stream's water for drinking and swimming. Fecal coliform bacteria are good indicators of human-caused pollution because they come from the gut of warm-blooded animals, including humans. Fecal coliform bacteria in streams can come from a variety of sources, including sewage, animal feedlots, pastureland, and cities. The discovery of fecal coliform bacteria in streams is an indication that disease-causing organisms may be present.
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Sediment is delivered to a stream through the erosion of upland areas or from the stream's banks. Too much sediment may cover gravel on a streambed, smothering eggs previously deposited in the gravel by spawning fish, or burying the gravelly substrates needed by aquatic insects. Measuring the amount and size of sediment in the stream water and on the streambed helps determine whether there is an excess and where it may be coming from.
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1st person account from our visit
- Collected many Macro-invertebrates
- Got to learn about many of them
- Got to collect the species our selfs
- Collected Lots of Cray Fish
- We learned about how to collect Macro-invertebrates.