Andrew's Watershed Blog Page

Science Blog 5-24-17

The temperature in water is very important. The thing that creates this mess is mostly the factories that pump the warm water out. The higher temperatures means more photosynthesis can happen and more plant life can grow. This is a good thing that there is more DO in the water and also more plant life but if there is too much plant life in the water then when they decompose they use up all the DO and there is none left for the fish and other things that need it.

There is also another reason why the warmer water in a river or lake is bad. The fish that need to live in the cold water will die so they will have to leave and find another body of water. There is also another problem, if the fish that can live in the colder and warmer water stay there, then when the fish that need warmer water come in and the lake is too crowded. If the water temperature is this big of a deal then the scientists can use water temperature as a quality indicator. The way the scientists do this is they compare the results from the times they have taken the temperature before and they can see the trends or if the water is warmer or cooler than usual.

Another thing that can affect the temperature of the water is the turbidity. Some things that make turbid water are clay, silt, and microscopic organisms. The sun heats up the things on the top and that seeps into the water affecting the natural balance.

Fecal coliform usually lives in warm blooded creatures and is naturally occurring in their digestive track. The problem is when it helps the bad microscopic organisms and viruses in the water. Even if there are a small amount of harmful microbes it just takes a small amount to make a person sick. The microbes can enter the body through the skin, cuts, nose, ears, or mouth. The way fecal coliform can get in the water is through runoff or sewage discharge. The way to tell if fecal coliform is present is easy, if the test comes back positive there is fecal coliform, the quality of the water is bad, but if the test comes back negative the quality is good in this regard.
Personal Filter Blog
May 1st 2017

The experience was a good one because dirty water is a big problem in the world. It is good to learn about this problem at a young age so we can all be thinking about a solution as we grow up. The idea was to make a filter that was fast, made the water clear, and did not take a lot of money. Our filter did not cost a lot of money and the water was clear but it was very slow. Time is more important than money because if you were to make a filter that goes on a river then you do not want to make a pond because the filter is taking so long. I did not think the sand and gravel would have the cleanest water because I thought the sand would fall through the gavel and not just stay on top. I also thought the paper filter would not work because it has to let coffe through so I did not think it would take much out and I was right. I also thought the screen would filter out the big chunks of things but not the dissolved things in the water and I was correct.

Lake Champlain
12/16/16

Phosphorous mostly gets into water from agriculture and forests lands. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 16% of phosphorus going into Lake Champlain comes from forest lands. Agriculture can account for 49% of phosphorous. Stream erosion can account for 16% of phosphorous too. We are doing an experiment to see if phosphorous in water is a good thing with an aquatic plant, duckweed.

Lab steps
12/16/16

We are doing an experiment to see if phosphorous affects the growth of plants. First we put 11 milliliters of water in 4 test tubes. Then we added a small drop of 0.05 liquid fertilizer in all of the the test tubes. After that we put 4 fruns of duckweed in the 4 test tubes. Last, we put the tubes near the window and we have an artificial light source for at night. These are the steps we did to do the duckweed experiments.





Dissolved Oxygen Test 
11/21/16

This week we did an experiment about how much dissolved oxygen there is Cedar Lake. It turned out that there is a little of dissolved oxygen cedar lake which means only a few species can live in the pond. We also took some water from our fish tank to compare the two different types of water. Both the fish and the pond water was at a pretty bad level of dissolved oxygen. We used four chemicals to determine the dissolved oxygen levels. One was manganous sulfate and iodide-azide which made floc and made the water cloudy and made the water an orange/yellow color. Then we put sulfamic acid which dissolves the flock and changed the color to a more rusty yellow color. The last thing we put in was sodium sulfate. We cept putting drops of sodium sulfate until the water was clear. To determine the dissolved oxygen level you have to count the drops. For the pond water we put 15 drops in and for the aquarium we put 9 drops in. This means that the pond water is at 3 mgl and the aquarium is at 2 mgl. In the state of vermont a body of water should have no less than 7 mgl. That is why I do not think the pond is that healthy in regard to dissolved oxygen

10/26/16

The land and water interact by when the water takes things from the sides of where the land and water meet and erodes shaping the land. Another is if the culvert is not in the right place on a dirt road so the water erodes the side of the road. If there is no trees or rocks near a river then the rate that the erosion happens is much higher because there is nothing to hold the dirt in so it can get in the river faster. Some point source pollution is if a car is leaking gas oil etc. because then it will go to a grate and end up in a river. Also my Grandpa sprayed ant fluid on his driveway because there was a lot of red ants and he didn't want them in his house but when he sprayed the fluid that will also go to a grate and get to a river. At one farm I went to the cows walk through the water with dirty legs and the cow manure in high in nitrogen and phosphorous and that is not a good thing to have in a river. Another thing is in peru NY (where my grandparents live) the sewage goes to a plant and they separate the liquids and solids then they put the liquids into the ausable river then treat the solids and put them in the river too. When the sewage leaves the point where they dump it, it turned into nonpoint pollution meaning you cannot point to it. Also when a car leaks and it gets to a body of water then it turns into non point pollution. These are some examples of how water and land interacts, point source pollution, and nonpoint pollution.


10-14-16
Multiple sources of Pollution

The land and rivers interact mostly by the land polluting the river because of the choices we as humans make. If you have a garden close by to a river or body of water and you put fertilizer on the garden to help the plants grow you also help bluegreen algae or cyanobacteria grow in the river or body of water. Also if a car is leaking gas or oil or some other unnatural fluid or some other unnatural. It will find its way to the lowest point and get to a river or body of water. Washing your car on paved driveway or or impervious surface the chemicals will get into the ground make its way into river. If a truck is carrying salt and spreading on the road it will find its way into a body of water or river.As long as we are careful about the choices we can keep rivers ponds and lakes safe.

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