April 14, 2020-
The Embrace-A-Stream project is the latest component of our effort to save the Neponset’s native brook trout. It provides much needed information to assess past and future restoration activities and to prioritize future projects.
The goals of the Embrace-A-Stream project are to:
- Understand the health of our cold water trout streams
- Understand how our trout are using their habitat
- Identify problems that need to be addressed
- Identify lands that need to be protected
- Track progress of our restoration efforts
The first phase of the project was completed last summer when we assessed all of the cold water road crossings for wildlife passage. This year we’re tracking the trout using eDNA technology, and monitoring the water temperatures.
Unfortunately, because of the Covid-19 pandemic we’ve had to cancel our May sampling mission. Hopefully we will be able to start that component in August. With the help of social distancing, we were able to begin tracking water temperatures.
Field work with a social distance twist
Thanks to a combination Greater Boston Trout Unlimited and NepRWA volunteers, we’ve been able to install temperature loggers to track the water temperatures in our cold water streams. And this was all done while wearing masks and practicing social distancing! The volunteers who’ve “adopted the loggers” will check on them periodically to download the data for analysis.
Temperature loggers identify areas that stay cool in the summer vs. areas that get too hot. Cold-water fish, like brook trout, need the water to stay cold in order to survive the summer heat.
The information that we get from the loggers helps us to prioritize areas that need land protection and stream bank restoration to maintain cold water “safe zones” for the fish.
Stay tuned for more updates!
For more information about this project, please contact NepRWA Environmental Scientist, Chris Hirsch at firstname.lastname@example.org