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Contents
1.  What you can do
2.  Water
3.  Ecology
4.  Amphibians
5.  Environmental Issues
6.  Keystone species
7.  Get Wet!-
     Field Study Ideas

8.  The Zoo Experience
9.  Frogs & Friends
10. Case Studies
11. Resources
12. Glossary

Wetland Curriculum Resource
Unit 7. Get Wet! - Field Study Ideas

7.3. STREAM STUDY - PHYSICAL PROPERTIES AND WATER QUALITY
(Level: 7 : 10 acad : 10 appl : 11 acad : 11 appl : 12 acad)

What You Do:

  1. Print out the physical properties (also available here if you cannot display popup windows) and the water quality monitoring sheets (also available here if you cannot display popup windows), and use them to conduct your own study. Be sure to consult "Understanding Water Quality Tests" before proceeding with the water quality testing.

Why are we testing temperature?

Temperature will affect the type of plants and animals that live in this wetland. It will influence the rate at which plants, particularly algae, grow and this may affect water quality. Temperature will affect the amount of oxygen and other chemicals in the water.

What does turbidity tell us?

Turbidity measures the amount of suspended matter in the water and therefore how far light can penetrate.

A reading of less than a metre would indicate a lot of suspended matter and means there would be little oxygen and not a lot of life. A reading of 10+ metres (measured from a boat, of course!) would show a clear body of water with a high level of oxygen and therefore a high level of productivity. (Note: There is an exception to this - lakes affected by acid rain are very clear and have virtually no life.)

Stream Flow (velocity)

The rate of flow of a stream will affect the plants that can live there and will determine whether there are suitable nest areas for fish or amphibians that lay there eggs there. A fast-flowing stream generally has a higher level of oxygen than a slow moving stream.

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