Sunday, May 31, 2015

Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Sampling in Amazon Headwaters

On 5/22/15, the Rivers Spies surveyed for aquatic macroinvertebrates in Amazon Creek at the base of Amazon Headwaters (south of Frank Kinney Park along Martin Street trail). 

Macroinvertebrates are animals that lack a backbone and can be seen with the unaided eye. "Aquatic" refers to animals that spend most of their lives associated with bodies of water. These animals are excellent bioindicators - their presence, abundance, and diversity can indicate the health of a stream, river, lake, wetland, or other aquatic environment. Macroinvertebrates are grouped according to their tolerance to pollution. 

We temporarily removed some 
macroinvertebrates for closer inspection.
At our survey site, we turned over rocks and scanned the water in search of macroinvertebrates. We found several species including caddis flies in their stony fortresses, water striders, scuds (amphipods), leeches, at least a hundred mayfly larvae! 

Mayfly Larva
Caddisfly Larva

Scud - also known as Sideswimmer or Amphipod

Damselfly Larva

Water Strider

Overall, our Amazon Creek site rated as having fair water quality.
I loaded our results from 5/22/15 onto StreamWebs™  - an online water quality data base managed by OSU:

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