Stream Day

Last Month, our Director of Research and Development and former teacher, Matthew Dickens, spent a day on the Brandywine in MoGreena to teach our Coatesville Youth Initiative more about what goes on in the river. Their activities included:
  • Conducting a stream water quality assessment.
  • Collecting macro invertebrates (bugs in the water big enough to see).
  • Counting, identifying, and classifying them based on their tolerance to pollution.
  • Calculating the Biotic Index of the stream based on the collection results.  (Way of averaging the results to determine water quality).
  • Determining that the water quality on our stretch of the Brandywine can be classified as “Good”, on a scale of Excellent, Good, Fair, Poor.
  • Highlights: Caught some huge crayfish, saw a snake, found out that there are thousands of creatures in the water that we didn’t know about.
They then participated in an art project (Matt is also a talented painter). This included:
  • Picking 3 favorite macro invertebrates then sketching and coloring them with colored pencils
  • Painting favorite of 3 sketches with acrylic paint.
  • Assembling frames made out of recycled pallet wood.
  • Mounting pictures to frames to take home.
  • Highlights:  Took an even closer look at the bugs, got a lesson in shop safety from Tom Breglia, and showed some creativity.
Then they tried their hands at fly-fishing (another of Matt’s talents)
  • Matt taught a lesson in the principals of fly fishing.
  • Fly casting lesson.
  • On stream fly fishing demonstration conducted by Matt.
  • Highlights: No one lost an eye trying to learn how to cast.  We caught a few sunnies.
The students had a great time. The proof is in the pictures. Thanks to Matty!
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