What is the condition of our streams and rivers?
Determining stream health requires evaluation of a wide variety of factors. Water flow, pollution levels, aquatic species health, and even temperature all contribute to the condition of a stream. Distinct biological, chemical and physical attributes must be assessed and then combined to get a full picture of ecosystem health. Each of these types of attributes can be assessed with a variety of indicators. The population distributions of species observed in a stream indicate the condition of its aquatic organisms and communities. Parameters such as pH, pollutant levels, and the amount of oxygen in the water indicate water quality. The structure of a stream channel and the way in which water and materials flow through its system indicate physical integrity of a stream.
This web portal contains data for some important indicators of stream health which have been the subject of recent studies. The long term goal for this portal is to expand beyond this initial set of indicators in order to present information concerning a broad suite of chemical, biological, and physical indicators.
- Fish Tissue Contaminants - presented in the portal, "Is it Safe to Eat Fish and Shellfish from our Waters?"
- The Effect of Land Use