Getting our feet wet…

Well its not every day that you get to install coffee bags with pacific tree frogs or shake hands with a crawfish, but that’s what Clackamas High School students got to spend the past two days doing at Rock Creek. 

Students in Mr. Shroufe’s classes came out to Rock Creek and got the basics on macroinvertebrate testing on Tuesday from Patrick Edwards, a professor at PSU’s Center for Science Education.  Patrick filled the students in on the importance of finding macroinvertebrates, or bugs and living things that can be seen with the naked eye, as they are indicators of stream health and pollution.  Students came across stoneflies, mayflies and some even found three-spined sticklebacks; all indicators of a relatively healthy stream!

Students also installed eighteen 2.5 ft by 2.5 ft pieces of plywood that they will monitor for salamanders, who like to live in moist, covered soil and brush.  The students installed these pieces of plywood into the soil to create a more snug and attractive habitat for salamanders, newts and other creatures.  They lifted logs and looked under brush to do an initial survey of the area; students found pacific tree frogs, rough skinned newts and Oregon ensatina.

Thanks to Mr. Shroufe for all the great photos!

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