Gwen's Watershed Blog Page

Thermal Pollution

In science we have been learning about how water quality affects the ecology of a community.

Photosynthesis increases with warmer temperatures, so the amount of plant growth will also increases. When there are too many plants in a body of water, the water temperature gets colder because the sun can’t hit the water because the plants are covering it. Fish and animals can’t eat because the plants are blocking the bugs. Cold water can have more DO (dissolved oxygen) than warmer water. The more oxygen in water, the more organisms can live in it.

Thermal pollution is changes in the temperature of water. Most thermal pollution comes from industries.

Fecal coliform is measured to determine the health of a river because fecal coliform is bacteria and it can cause diseases. Fecal coliform bacteria comes from human and warm-blooded animal feces. Water near farms probably has a lot of fecal coliform bacteria because the farm animals go to the bathroom near and in the water. Another way fecal coliform bacteria can end up in water from human sewage and waste.
Individual Science Blog

Our class did a test about different water filters. We did 3 different tests with different water mixtures. I was in a group with Patty, Piper, and Maxx. We got sample B which was 8 bags of loose tea bags mixed with 1 liter of warm water, we got our holes clogged on tests 2 and 3, so they weren't very fair tests. For our first test we used sand and gravel, it took 1 minute and 43 seconds for the water to get to the line, so it was the fastest, and it did the best cleaning (taking the particles out, it was also the only one with that took all the particles out). My prediction was that the paper filter would work best, because all the dirt and particles will be left behind and the water will come out clean. I thought the screen wouldn't work because all the dirt will go through the screen. Even though the screen wasn’t as good as the sand and gravel it still caught some particles. I thought this experiment was very interesting because I didn’t expect sand and gravel to work the best.
Inquiry Set Up

In our class we are doing an experiment to see how phosphorous can affect duckweed growth. If you want to try this out follow these simple steps.

Step 1- Get 4 test tubes.

Step 2- Fill the test tubes with 20 ml of distilled water.

Step 3- Put duckweed in the tubs and make sure you have 7-15 fronds in each tube.

Step 4- Put in about .5 (half) ml of liquid fertilizer in each test tube. Try and be as accurate as possible. Use eye droppers if necessary.

Step 5- Put the test tubes somewhere it won’t spill, make sure it’s in the sun.

Step 6- Check to see how many fronds are in each test tubes everyday for 5+ days.

Our class has started a new unit about phosphorus. Too much phosphorus can be really bad. In Otter Creek 49% phosphorus is coming from agriculture (farming.) Agriculture makes phosphorus by using fertilizer for their plants, then when it rains the fertilizer gets picked up by the water and moves to the lowest point and pools, or goes to a body of water. In Missisquoi Bay there is a lot of phosphorus and bacteria, they need to reduce the bacteria by 50%.

Science Blog

In science we have been learning about Cedar Lake (Monkton Pond) we took water from Monkton Pond and water from are guppy tank in our classroom and we tested the water. With Ms. Pierpont’s class we took those samples and tested them to see if the are good water. To have good water in Vermont is milligrams per square leder (mg/L) of oxygen, when we tested the pond water it only had 3mg/L that means that very little creatures can live in the water. Some classmates said when they went fishing they only caught sun fish and 1 person said they caught a bass, that's not very many types of fish. When we tested the guppy water it said that the water only had 2mg/L! The test said that meant creatures will have a hard time to live there. We figured out that are tank and pond are not healthy.
Over the past 5 days my teacher assigned me and other students to find 5 point source pollution and 5 non point source and how land and water interact. Some point source pollution i saw over the 5 days are,

Horse/cow waste
I live right across from a farm and with animal waste it rains and then the water hits the waste and the bacteria gets carried by the water into sewer drains or a body of water.

Ashes from a fire
People like to throw their ashes into a nearby field or river which the same thing happens the rain hit the bacteria ect.

Construction machines I saw some construction and that's bad for the environment because when they dig up the ground they are changing the ground. Those machines sometimes have a oil spill and the smoke is not good either.

Throwing a cigaretteI saw someone throwing a cigarette on the ground and stomped on it, did you know that cigarettes take 10 years to disintegrate! Seeing people smoke got me thinking does smoking cause air pollution?

Some non point pollution is,

Oil in a puddle
I saw oil in a puddle, it was raining and the oil was on a slope so it would go to the lowest point of elevation.

Cigarette buts
When I was outside walking to shop to shop I saw lots of cigarette buds, cigarettes are filled with bacteria! So the same thing happens the rain water hits the cigarette and all the bacteria goes down into the sewer drain.

LitterLitter is also something that carries bacteria, germ ect. again the rain water hits the litter ect.

Omya Factory
Omya is company that makes baby powder. I saw a bunch of smoke in the air I couldn't see the factory so that's why this is under the non point category but my mom did tell me that was a factory. The factory causes air pollution.

My teacher signed me to find how land and water interact. I found that in my back yard there is a path way of rocks and I saw that the water eroded the rocks and made a path of water.
Different Types Of Pollution

Our class has learned a lot about pollution. Did you know those big machines that construction workers use cause pollution to the air because smoke and oil come out of them. Pouring liquids into the sewer drains causes water pollution because all sewer goes into some type of body of water. Littering is a very big problem, because litter has lots of bacteria and germs. When it rains on an impervious surfaces (such as pavement or any flat and hard surface) the bacteria and germs come off the litter onto the water and finds it’s way into a sewer drain and/or into the nearest body of water. Cars also have oil sometimes leak out of them and then it rains, going into a body of water. There’s also a thing called point source and non-point source pollution, non-point source pollution means you can see pollution but can’t see who or what did it. Point source pollution means you can see someone causing pollution; for an example if you see someone pouring a liquid down the sewer drain is point source pollution. This is what we have been learning lately hope you enjoyed.

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