The Brook Trout Habitat Project (BTHP) #
Aims to connect students to their local environment through education and stewardship. The BTHP is concerned with water quality and its relationship to land use in communities. Students must understand the implications the rapid land development occurring in North America that is replacing forests and farmland. Conservation and best management practices will play a vital role in preserving the local water resources. The BTHP focuses on the students’ understanding of these issues and how they impact the ecology of a freshwater rivers and streams.
Students will learn the importance of improving water quality and then make a difference in their community through action. Throughout the BTHP, students will gather information about their watershed and local streams, and then complete on-site restoration and repair activities, such as replanting a riparian forest or installing rain gardens, to improve water quality. Students will aim to restore local streams and rivers to the highest of ecological standards, that of the brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis).
While assessing their local streams, students will use the following worksheets to record their data. The following worksheets are useful for any eastern stream in which brook trout are natively found.
Brook Trout Checklist (PDF)
Guides students through a complete assessment of water chemistry and stream geomorphology. This sheet also lists the benchmarks needed for brook trout.
Riparian Forest Evaluation (PDF)
Guides students through a thorough evaluation of streamside vegetation. This sheet also lists benchmarks needed for brook trout.
New Tree Survival Rate (PDF)
Guides students through a condensed assessment of tree-planting project success.