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DOWNLOAD THE TRAILS NEWSLETTER     Spring 2017
Possible FTTU Veterans Program
Help a Disabled Vet Learn to Fish
Some of you may have read about Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Inc. a nonprofit organization that gives disabled active military and veterans an opportunity to fish as part of a rehabilitation program. There was an article about the program in a recent TU magazine. FTTU has discussed the possibility of offering similar services at our chapter level. We're attempting to determine the level of interest and what resources we might need should we decide to move forward.
FTTU has over 400 registered members. We suspect many of our members are military veterans. We are asking members whether they are veterans or not if they would be interested in helping us develop an outreach program for wounded vets. It could be something as simple as extending an invitation to disabled vets for regularly scheduled events, or depending upon the level of interest, we might design an activity such as a fishing derby exclusively for them. Were in the brainstorming stage at this point.
If you are a member of a local American Legion VFW AMVETS or other veterans organization or just know of a disabled vet you can help us get started. Ask around to see if disabled vets would be interested in some type of fishing or flytying program and let us know. They would have to provide their own transportation, but we would make sure any event would have ADA access. FTTU already has a number of rods reels and equipment. We would make every effort to pair the vet with one of our members for assistance and instruction.
Not all disabled vets have an interest in fishing or flytying, but some may have a strong interest and are just waiting for an opportunity. If you have ideas on activities, how to reach out to disabled vets or would like to volunteer with events please come to our June 21st meeting.

FTTU Officers Named
The Forbes Trail Chapter of Trout Unlimited selected officers for the 2017-18 term at the November meeting. Monty Murty of Laughlintown is President, Denny Hess of Irwin is Vice President and Scott Minster of Derry Twp. is Secretary Treasurer.

FTTU Representatives Participate in Macro Collection Training
On a Beautiful fall day on November 12 Monty Murty and Scott Minster of FTTU attended a day of training in the collection and documenting of trout stream macroinvertebrates. The session was held at the new visitor's center at Ohiopyle State Park and was put on by Trout Unlimited and the Chestnut Ridge chapter of TU. The training was conducted by Jake Lemon of Trout Unlimited. In the training we learned to identify macros down to the genus level and to recognize those that are more or less pollution tolerant. We also learned how to score the results of a kick net survey to determine a stream's water quality based on the proliferation of high quality, pollution intolerant organisms.
A hands-on, in-stream session was held on Meadow Run. Two teams of participants did kick net surveys, sorted the macros and then scored the stream based on the genus and numbers of insects found. Meadow Run scored pretty good with fair numbers of high quality macros such as stoneflies and mayflies turning up in the nets.
We plan to put the new protocols to use in our work in the Linn RunWatershed.

Rock Run Numbers Encouraging
FTTU volunteers took pH and alkalinity readings on Rock Run in June. Rock Run, a tributary of Linn Run, has been the site of an ongoing acid remediation project begun by FTTU in 2005.
pH readings were around 7.2 in all 4 locations on the lower half of the stream. A pH of 7 is ideal, lower numbers are acidic and higher numbers are alkaline. Readings taken in the same area were 4.9 - 5.3 in 2005. These excellent pH numbers are even more impressive when you consider that it rained in the watershed the previous night.

Alkalinity titration tests were also done. This test may be the most important since a streams alkalinity indicates its ability to buffer acidity when rainstorms and snow melt bring in acid precipitaion. We recorded an alkalinity of 5.2 in three sites and 7.2 in the location furthest upstream. According to The PA Fish and Boat Commission, waters with alkalinity below 10 are considered to have poor buffering capacity. Valley streams in Pennsylvania with more limestone geology have high alkalinity while mountain streams like Rock Run typically have low alkalinity. Although the numbers we recorded are below the 10 threshold, they show an improvement over readings taken at the same locations in 2008 that ranged from 1.2 to 4.4. Although we didn't venture into the difficult to access upstream sections, we are confident that alkalinity numbers improve in upstream sites since they are closer to the limestone sand in the headwaters.

Meadow Run has a lot of large stoneflies, and some mayflies too.
The insects are then picked off the net and placed in a water filled container where they're sorted by family and genus.
Macros are colleted in a net by truning rocks and kicking up the stream bed.