03
Oct

If you visited the stream over the summer, you may have noticed a funky hue to it from time to time.  We have documented some abnormalities in water quality in our regular monitoring sampling.  The NMR Monitoring Committee looked further into these abnormalities by reaching out to the municipalities.  The conclusion of the source of the water quality fluxes was that there were documented water main and sewer link breaks, causing an influx in pollution to the stream throughout the summer.

Looking upstream from Commercial Avenue on July 27, 2016. Note the white-blue hue of the water caused by elevated aluminum and bacteria.

Looking upstream from Commercial Avenue on July 27, 2016. Note the white-blue hue of the water caused by elevated aluminum and bacteria.

This is a stark reminder that while the stream and surrounding area is a beautiful place to walk or bike, the water flowing by is still plagued by urban stressors and an example of the environmental effects of aging infrastructure. The NMR stream itself has been studied for decades but NMRWA has worked with local ecological professionals to monitor the stream since near the end of the completion of the restoration in 2005.  There was a need to assist current research efforts and share information, but also to aggregate the results and inform the general public so NMRWA formed the NMR Monitoring Committee to collectively evaluate and assess the stream.

Looking upstream from Commercial Avenue again on August 24, 2016, a normal day. This is also a picture of one of the monthly sampling sites known as NMR-2.

Looking upstream from Commercial Avenue again on August 24, 2016, a normal day. This is also a picture of one of the monthly sampling sites known as NMR-2.

Recently, we updated our monitoring webpages so that you can interact with and understand the parameters we are assessing, where, and our methods.  With the assistance our Stream Monitoring Intern, Cassidy, we expanded the webpage content and added interactive maps as well.  Check out the map below, which is also on our sample site webpage, you can see the exact four spots we take monthly recordings of pH, conductivity, and temperature along with water samples to test for bacteria, metals, and ions.  In addition to the map below, there is also now a map to see some of the data collected and a webpage for reports and studies completed on the stream and watershed.

(click here or on the image below to see the full screen map)
NMR Sampling Site Screen Capture - Click to view

While we can’t completely control the urban watershed environment, we can contribute to the resiliency of the restoration and watershed as a whole through caring for our urban forest, capturing stormwater at our homes or in our neighborhoods, and stewarding the stream.  We hope you join us at any of our upcoming events this fall! If you have any questions about our monitoring program or upcoming events, please contact Maranda at .

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