Posted in Citizen Science Conservation Linn Run Rock Run

Linn Run Conservation Plan Work Continues with Macro Study

On Wednesday, June 16, FTTU volunteers gathered at the Grove Run Picnic area in Linn Run State Park to do a comprehensive aquatic macroinvertebrate collection and study of Linn Run and its tributaries. Andrea Kautz, Research Entomologist at the Powdermill Nature Reserve, and Josh Penatzer, Project Manager with the Loyalhanna Watershed Association, were the professionals who supervised the study. Previously, Andrea conducted a macro identification training session for volunteers via zoom, and both Andrea and Josh demonstrated the use of kick nets, explained the collection protocol, and oversaw the identification, sorting and scoring process on site. FTTU members with previous experience in macro collection led teams that carried out the kick net collection at 11 different sites within the watershed. Each site had at least 200 organisms captured. The samples were collected in buckets and brought back to the Grove Run Picnic Area where they were counted and sorted to the Genus level and then returned to the stream. All this work was carried out between 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm thanks to the great response we had from volunteers and Andrea and Josh’s guidance.

The numbers and types of macroinvertebrates inhabiting a stream are great indicators of stream health particularly the “high quality” Genus’s of mayflies, stoneflies and caddis flies.

The final report for the Linn Run Coldwater Conservation Plan will be produced in about one year.  The study is to determine the overall health of Linn Run and the fishery.  Next step, based on the information collected, is to determine if there are potential remediation projects we can undertake that might improve stream health and trout habitat.



Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run Data For June 2021

Mouth of Rock Run
Mouth of Rock Run

Monthly water testing results for Rock Run:

Air Temperature: 48° F
Water Temperature: 52.5° F
Linn Run Discharge: 28.1 ft³/sec
Linn Run Gauge: 2.08 ft.
pH: 7.5
Alkalinity: 7.4















Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run Water Tests For May

Rock Run
The mouth of Rock Run – May 1, 2021

Here’s the results of water sampling at the mouth of Rock Run done on May 1, 2021.

Air Temperature: 39° F
Water Temperature: 44.5°
Linn Run Discharge: 33.4 ft³/sec
Linn Run Gauge Height: 2.17 ft.
pH: 7.4
Alkalinity: 4.3















Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run Water Testing April 2021

Water sampling was done at the mouth of Rock Run on April 5.

Air Temperature: 55° F
Water Temperature: 46° F
Linn Run Gauge Height: 1.95
pH: 7.3
Alkalinity: 3.9

This month, Denny Hess conducted a training session on how to use the pH meter and do the alkalinity titration test.

Click here Rock Run pH Chart 2021 for the rundown on monthly test results for this year.


Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Monthly Water Testing Results

“Neither rain nor snow nor dark of night…”, you know the saying. You may question their sanity, but the FTTU citizen scientists were out in the rain and snow and mist and fog to do our monthly water quality tests at the mouth of Rock Run. We visited two other Linn Run tributaries Grove Run and Quarry Run and took samples there as well. The flow in the watershed was healthy do to snow melt and rain which also stesses the alkalinity of the streams. Rock Run has the lowest alkalinity of the three, which is what led to out limestone treatment project there. Quarry Run, which is basically a large spring, has the best water quality of the three.

Air Temperature: 37° F
Linn Run Discharge: 19
Linn Run Gauge Height: 2.16

Rock Run
Water Temperature: 41.5° F
pH: 7.3
Alkalinity: 3.1

Grove Run
Water Temperature: 39.5°
pH: 7.2
Alkalinity: 6.2

Quarry Run
Water Temperature: 40.5°
pH: 7.2
Alkalinity: 16.6


Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run Water Testing for February 2021

Rock Run January 30, 2021
Denny Hess takes a temperature reading near the mouth of Rock Run.

You may question their sanity, but the FTTU testing crew was out with temperatures in the teens at Rock Run taking water samples this past Saturday.
It was a “crisp” but beautiful winter day at Linn Run State Park, Rock Run was flowing moderate and as always, clear.

Air Temp: 19 degrees F
Water Temp: 29.5 degrees F
Linn Run Gauge: 1.91 ft.
Linn Run Discharge: 21.8 ft³/sec.
pH: 7.6
Alkalinity: 3.2

We also collected some snow from around the area, allowed it to melt, and took readings of those samples as well.
pH: 7.3
Alkalinity: 4.5







Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run January 2021

Mouth of Rock Run
Rock Run, January 2, 2021


A new year of water quality testing begins on Rock Run. The flow is high with rain and snow runoff, so the stream’s alkalinity content is put to the test.

Air Temperature: 39 degrees F
Water Temperature: 40.5 degrees F
Linn Run discharge: 22.0
Linn Run gauge: 2.88
pH: 6.8
Alkalinity: 2.6


Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Final Rock Run Test Data for 2020

Rock Run December, 2020
Now that’s more like it! Finally, a healthy flow in Rock Run.

The testers braved the chill and completed the final water tests at the mouth of Rock Run on December 5.

December Numbers
Air Temperature: 36 Degrees F
Water Temperature: 40 Degrees F
pH: 7.2
Alkalinity: 5.0
Linn Run Gauge: 2.35
Linn Run Discharge:22

Highs and Lows
Air Temperature: High – 72 in August. Low – 27 in January.
Water Temperature: High – 67 in August. Low – 37.5 in January
pH: High – 7.5 in November. Low – 6.5 in January.
Alkalinity: High – 11.4 in August. Low – 2.2 in May.
Linn Run Gauge: High – 2.38 in January. Low – 1.4 in October.
Linn Run Discharge: High – 48.8 in March. Low – too low for a reading in August.

Averages for 2020
Air Temperature: 51.8
Water Temperature: 50.5
pH: 6.88
Alkalinity: 5.92
Linn Run Gauge: 1.92
Linn Run Discharge: 17.92

Surprisingly, despite the drought, Linn Run gauge and discharge averages were higher in 2020 than 2019 probably because of high flows early in the year.
pH was up in 2020, but alkalinity was down slightly probably because high flows produced low readings in January, February, March and May.
You can view the whole 2020 report by clicking here Rock Run Tests 2020.



Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Monthly Water Tests

The Citizen Scientists were at it again on Saturday, November 1st.
Readings taken at the mouth of Rock Run are as follows:
Air Temperature: 48 Degrees F
Water Temperature: 47.5 Degrees F
Linn Run Gauge: 2.01
Linn Run Discharge: 9.0
pH: 7.5
Alkalinity: 9.5

We also hiked in to the headwaters on the East Branch and took readings there.
pH: 7.4
Alkalinity: 37.8

pH: 6.8
Alkalinity: 2.1

MAIN STEM 200′ Below Confluence
pH: 7.3
Alkalinity: 35.2

The effects of the limestone sand dosing are plain to see from the difference in alkalinity. The limestone sand piles are located near the top of the East Branch. The West Branch has not been treated with limestone. The alkalinity test at the mouth shows the influence of the limestone (+7.4) 1.5 miles downstream.
The East Branch is about 3/4 mile long. The readings were taken about 1/2 mile from the limestone. Limestone sand is evident throughout the entire length of the East Branch. The West Branch is smaller and has a lower flow.


Posted in Citizen Science Rock Run

Rock Run Water Tests October 2020

Rock Run October 2020
Down to a trickle, Rock Run October 4, 2020

Here’s the readings taken at the mouth of Rock Run on October 4, 2020.

Air Temperature – 39 Degrees F
Water Temperature – 50 Degrees F
Alkalinity – 9
pH – 7.2
Linn Run Gauge – 1.4
Linn Run Discharge – 1.8

Samples were taken upstream above the limestone sand piles.

pH – 4.8
Alkalinity – Zero!
Water Temperature – 50 Degrees F