Water Samples Aquatic Insect Samples Video: How We Monitor
We regularly monitor the quality of streams in Raleigh. The data we collect informs us about stream health. And, it allows us to watch changes in streams over time.
We collect samples at 18 locations every three months. Each location is a major tributary or stream that flows to the Neuse River. We use water quality meters to read chemical data and take water samples. An independent lab analyzes the samples.
This information helps gauge stream health. It is also a requirement of our stormwater permit.
|What We Measure||Analyzed at the Lab|
Aquatic Insect Samples
Benthic macroinvertebrates are aquatic insects that live in streams. They are large enough to see without a microscope. Macroinvertebrates include aquatic worms, snails, clams, and crayfish.
Samples are taken at 22 stream locations once a year. We use kick nets and D-nets to collect and study the insects. These insects are a good indicator of water quality since they typically live in a stream for 1-3 years.
Water Quality Indicators
Good to Excellent: Large, diverse population sensitive to pollution
Fair to Poor: Smaller, less diverse population more tolerant to pollution
Did You Know?
The meaning for benthic macroinvertebrates comes from:
- Benthic = bottom of a waterbody
- Macro = large
- Invertebrate = animal without a backbone