Overall Stream Health

We will use two strategies to measure overall stream health: 1) monitoring the environmental and chemical indicators which we study in the bay at four streams under three stream conditions (see chart below),  and 2) study the presence or absence of certain macroinvertebrates as indicators of overall stream health using the Maine Stream Explorers methodology.  Water samples are taken using 12” canvas nets and/ or rock bags, and are examined under a microscope to identify the presence and abundance of macroinvertebrate species. The relative prevalence of more or less sensitive macroinvertebrates indicates the overall health of the stream being sampled. We will partner with local high schools using this program, a citizen science initiative sponsored by Maine Audubon, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP), and other organizations.