Educational Projects

Educational Projects
Harkins report
Water Quality Board
Salmon Watch


Watersheds School Project

Sponsored by Scotia Gate Program and the Cuddeback and Bridgeville Watershed Project.

During the 2006-2007 school year, three field trips were conducted to Hely Creek on 9/22/06, to Grizzly Creek on September 29th, and to both Hely Creek and the Main Stem Van Duzen on 5/17/07. In addition, Ed Brenneman conducted individual and small group trips to Hely Creek with students from Cuddeback and Bridgeville Schools.

8th Grade Cuddeback and Gate students Scotia

Total Students 25

Time : 9:45 – 2:15

Date : 9/22/06

9/22/06 Personnel

Ed Brenneman, Cuddeback Watersheds Director

Sal Steinberg, Scotia Gate Director

Dave Heaton, Geologist

Chris Ramsey, Fish and Game Education Director

Kristine Darby, Scientists in the Schools

Nic Simpson, Macroinvertebrates

Blaine Sigler, 8th grade teacher

Chris Ramsey, California Fish and Game Education Coordinator discusses

fish population counts with students at the mouth of Hely Creek.

In 2001, approximately 25-30 chinook entered this system. In 2006, one pair

spawned under the bridge.

Dave Heaton studies the root structure, age, and geology of the bluff.

Students learning to use hach cells and the turbidimeter.

7th /8th Grade Bridgeville and Gate Students Scotia

Total Students 27

Time : 945-2:15

Date : September 29that Grizzly Creek

Oct.24th on the Main Stem in Bridgeville


Ed Brenneman, Cuddeback Watersheds Director

Sal Steinberg, Scotia Gate Director

Michael Guerriero, artist

Dave Heaton, Geologist

Kristina Darby, Scientists in the Schools

Nic Simpson, Macroinvertbrates

Virginia Mullan, 8th grade teacher
From the Log Book of a student Dara Katedorn

“11:00 A.M. Van Duzen River Mainstem 10/24/06

Today is overcast and cold. I am in a pretty good mood. There is not a lot of stuff hanging over the river. I hear the river babbling and pencils writing. I can also hear cars going by. I am with Danielle, Mattis, Alex, Shawn, Jordan and Mr.Brenneman. We got to get out of class. The main reason for being here is to study the river.”

Data from field trips to Grizzly Creek Sept.29th and Main Stem 10/24/06

Test Location Grizzly Creek Main Stem Van Duzen

Temperature 13.6 13.26

PH 8.77

Dissolved Oxygen 10.13 mg/L 10.30 mg/L

Turbidity 1.87 NTU .13 NTU

Notes from Dara Katedorn Geology 9/29/06

Color : violet, penny copper, bluish grey, elephant grey

Shape : my rock looks cube like

Luster : it has a certain sparkle

Hardness: my rock has a hardness of about 3.5

Toughness: my rock is brittle and comes off in pieces

Identification : Arguillite

Macroinvertebrate Counts on Main Stem, location in a riffle

Stone Fly 6

May Fly 4

Caddis Fly 20+

Fly Larva 4

8th Grade Cuddeback and Gate students Scotia

Total Students 25

Time : 9:45 – 2:15

Date : Thursday May 17th


Ed Brenneman, Cuddeback Watersheds Director

Sal Steinberg, Scotia Gate Director

Cat McAdams, Artist with volunteer assistant Roger

Dave Heaton, Geologist

Kristina Darby, Scientists in the Schools

Stations – each station will be conducted twice during the day with a break for lunch.

#1 Water Monitoring – This group will conduct waters quality monitoring on the Main Stem compared to Hely Creek. They will conduct turbidity, flow across the creek, temperature, and other water quality tasks. Students will file an official report with the Van Duzen Watershed Project

#2 Geology and Art - students will study the Bluffs, take a geological walk with Dave Heaton, then work with artist Cat McAdams and her assistant to make a drawing of the bluffs.

#3 Botannical walk through the Redwoods – students will take the Humboldt Grove hike, take plant samples, and make observations about the Redwood forest through poetry.

Students study wild iris with an eye for poison oak.

All students will gather at 9:45 at Swimmers Delight for Welcome

Stations will run from approximately 10 – 11:30/11:45 with a break for lunch and then we will run the stations a 2nd time by 12;30.

A spot-check of Hely Creek and the Van Duzen river at Swimmers. The date samples were taken was May 17, 2007. The weather was sunny and warm. Hely Creek in the area monitoring occurred is largely shaded by trees. The Van Duzen River at Swimmers is completely exposed to sunlight. There is little to no shading of the Van Duzen River.

The optimal pH range for most life is between 6.5 and 8.2. The pH can fluctuate for many reasons during the day. The pH of Hely Creek was 8.72 at 12:30 P.M. and 8.19 on the Van Duzen at 10:30 A.M.

The temperatures of these waters at these times were Hely Creek 13 ºC and the Van Duzen River 14.9º C. The optimum temperature range for salmonids is 8ºC -13ºC. The temperature also affects the dissolved oxygen levels. The Van Duzen could have slipped beyond the optimal reason because the water is shallow at this time of year and because of the exposure to the sunlight.

Healthy streams have a dissolved oxygen saturation of 90 to 100 percent. The Van Duzen River had a dissolved oxygen (DO) reading of 9.96mg/L which yields a 95 % saturation. Hely Creek had a DO of 10.55 mg/L yielding a 100% saturation.

Streams supporting healthy fish populations have conductivity ranges between 150-500 microseimens. Conductivity is a measure of the ability of the minerals in the water to pass an electrical current. These minerals are important for the passage of nutrients in and out of an organisms cells. The Van Duzen had a conductivity reading of 161.3 microseimens while Hely Creek had a reading of 48.6 microseimens.

For each test three samples were taken and averaged at each site. This report is a spot picture of Hely Creek and the Van Duzen River no assumptions or conclusions can be made from it without many more data points being included.

Friends of the Van Duzen River
PO Box 315
Carlotta, CA 95528
Home | Educational Projects | Water Monitoring |
Water Quality Board |Salmon Watch | CDF |Watershed Analysis