Wednesday, January 20, 2016

On Jan 14th 2016, the QV Creekers were visited by Anna Wendt (Postdoctoral scientist from the Earth and Environmental Systems Institute at Penn State). She spoke to them about Marcellus shale extraction and her work with high school students near Penn State to sample for methane in their watershed. She will be running some samples for us and will be helping my creekers to collect the first baseline methane readings in Little Sewickley Creek that I know of....exciting!

Monday, October 12, 2015

QV Creekers are Back for 2015-2016 School Year!

QV Creekers is currently beginning its 7th year!  

Each year, a maximum of 20 students are selected from a pool of interested high school applicants ranging from 9th - 12 grades to participate.  Approximately 60 students have completed the program since 2009.  The QV Creekers would like to thank the Little Sewickley Creek Watershed Association, Quaker Valley High School and the Creek Connections program at Allegheny College for actively sponsoring this worthwhile experience for our local young people.  

We had out first meeting for this year on October 5th 2015!  We spent the day examining changes in fish diversity upstream of the Woodland dam site.  
The Woodland dam was removed in late July 2015!  Here is what we found!

“Local Fish Species Begin to Move”- On October 5th 2015, the QV Creekers once again joined forces with Eric Chapman (Director of Aquatic Science at the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy) to investigate whether any fish species had begun to move upstream as a result of the Woodland dam removal which occurred on July 31st 2015.  There has only been approximately 3-4 rain events since the actual dam removal so we weren’t expecting to see an enormous change in fish diversity but we were happy to see at least several species did start to migrate upstream of where they were trapped below the dam in years past.  The group sampled in Walker Park approximately 0.5 miles and 1.0 miles upstream of the dam removal site.  Several species of fish including the Rainbow darter, Smallmouth bass, Central stoneroller and one species of Shiner (yet to be positively identified) were found in small numbers (<10) at least one or both of the upstream study sites during the survey.  Several small Brown trout fingerlings (less than 80mm in length) were also discovered at the second site which suggests that the Brown trout are still successfully reproducing in Little Sewickley Creek.  QV Creekers hope to do more fish surveys in late spring/early summer in 2016 to investigate further evidence of fish diversity changes throughout the watershed post-dam removal.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Thank you to Dr Catie Hanna (Robert Morris University Bio Dept.) for sponsoring the QV Creeker's meeting on December 8th 2014. Creekers visited RMU labs and dissected 2 turkey crops to search for evidence of salamander predation. No salamanders were found but we did discover 2 species of land snails. Check out the pics. QV Creekers will be on break until after the New Year ! We also ran some microbiology tests on our 5 sites along the watershed.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Saving the Sallies!
On Monday October 20th 2014, QV Creekers and volunteers from the LSC waterhed Assoc. continued to build a new fence around the sewage tanks in Belll Acres to protect the Jefferson salamanders, Wood Frogs and Spotted Salamander Populations from falling in! This wall will be stronger than our aluminum flashing that we have used in the past and is made of wood!  We will continue to monitor the salamander populations this coming spring!  We would like to thank the Sewickley Academy Creek Club for their help on this project as well as Amy Miller from Allegheny County Conservation District and Laura Branby from Creek Connections.

Monday, October 13, 2014

QV Creekers are Back for 2014 - 2015!

QV Creekers have returned for the 2014 - 2015 school year!  This is our 6th year!  Thank you to the Little Sewickley Creek Watershed Association in Sewickley PA and Creek Connections out of Allegheny College in Meadville, PA for sponsoring our group!  
We started the year with our annual training at Walker Park on October 7th 2014.  We will keep you posted on upcoming projects and data collection in our watershed.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Tie Dye T Shirt Time!  Getting Ready for the Creek Connections Conference on April 4th 2014! 

We will be sharing our projects about the undamming of Little Sewickley Creek and the Saw Whet Owl Project with students from all over the western Pennsylvania!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

 QV Creekers are working hard on their projects for the Creek Connections symposium 2014! Check it out!

Eric and Group are working on replica of Woodland Dam

Working on using bird bands for our banding activity
Launching stuffed birds into our mist net from Powdermill

Setting up a mist net can be tricky!
Poster work for the Creek Connections Symposium
Owl ID Game for the Creek Connections symposium