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[Spring 2001 Results]

Johnson Creek Water Quality Study

Spring 2000


A. The Introduction will contain a page of background information on why it might be important to study Johnson Creek. This could include personal experiences with Johnson Creek and would also include some of the goals that both public, private, and governmental agencies would have in studying and modifying the creek. It would also be helpful to include background about history or problems that have occurred in Johnson Creek in the past as well as the present. You might also research introducing salmon back into Johnson Creek. Background information regarding water quality may be found at the links listed below.

B. Question: What quality is the site on Johnson Creek that I am studying? Is it poor, fair, good, or excellent?

C. Hypothesis: After visiting Johnson Creek the first time, write a paragraph summarizing the appearance of the water and the vegetation above the waterline, stating what you think the quality of Johnson Creek will be and why. If you know of pollution sources, or problems that exist in the creek, this is the place to put them!


Describe the activities that you did to collect information about Johnson Creek in your own words.

How was the water collected?

What kind of tests were run on the water?

How did you collect plant and animal data, and how was that data saved?

How was the work organized? Who did what and why?

Discuss safety issues both at the creek and in the class when handling the chemicals.

As you became more familiar with the tests, what kinds of things were done to make the tests more reliable or accurate?

Background Information Links:

1. City of Portland: Environmental Services- Read about the value of watersheds and then click on Johonson Creek Watershed.

2. Johnson Creek Watershed Council- Info on the watershed and some maps of Johnson Creek.

3. Johnson Creek Watershed Webpage- Lots of info about Johnson Creek.

4. USGS: Current Stream flow of Johnson Creek at Regner Road.

5. NW Wetlands Home Page-

6. Wetlands Facts-

7. Wetlands in Oregon- Click on Willamette Valley to see the problems occurring in this area!

8. Department of Environmental Quality- Specific problems affecting Johnson Creek.

9. Oregon Sea Grant- Internet Resources: Salmon & Watersheds

10. Wetlands Homepage-

Actual Site Data from the Spring of 2000

Use these links to view the data you collected.

1. Johnson Creek at Eastman Parkway

2. Johnson Creek at SW 2nd Avenue

3. Johnson Creek at the Old Cemetary (near West Elementary School)

4. Johnson Creek at Main City Park

5. Johnson Creek at Regner Road

6. Johnson Creek at Liberty Avenue

7. Johnson Creek at Hogan Road

[Spring 2001 Results]

Display of Data:


a. Each person turns in a copy of the raw data (data collected at site or water quality data tested in class).

b. Make a table of your water quality data, organized so it is easy to read. Include any averages where needed.

c. Make a graph/s of how the water quality changed for each test from week to week.

d. Make a list of plants at site. If you don't know the name of a plant, look it up on the GHS website (then look at the bottom of the page under Links to Help with Spring Projects).

e. Make a list of human impacts, or other important data that were noted.

Analysis of Data:


a. Determine the water quality of your site. Click on the link entitled Water Quality Index. Look at the tables and see how your tests rate Johnson Creek.

b. Rate your stream for the amount of pH, temperature change, percent dissolved oxygen saturation, nitrate and phosphate.

c. Restate your original hypothesis about the water quality of Johnson Creek. Next, state how your site fared when testing the water characteristics from part b above (ie, was the pH excellent, good, poor, etc. for the other tests....). Give a general rating for the water quality of your site (combining all the tests). Explain your reasoning for this rating.

d. Compare the numbers for the 2 or 3 times you went (you can also rely on data collected by the team from the other class at your site). Did they stay about the same or change (how so?)? What may have caused any changes?

d. State possible sources of pollution for the various water quality tests you did. See the following link for more information.

What do all these numbers mean? Click here to learn more about nitrate, oxygen, pH, etc. and also to learn what the actual water quality is for your site!

e. What could possibly be done to improve the water quality at your site. Be as specific as possible. (See the link directly above about pollution sources!)

f. Do some research and see if salmon and trout could live here.

g. Discuss the type of plants found at your site. Which ones are natives (good quality plants)? Which ones are weeds (poor quality plants)?

h. Discuss the good and bad human impacts on your particular site. In your determination, which wins (good or bad?) Discuss your reasoning for this rating.

[Spring 2001 Results]

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