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.