Our research began with funding from the Coldwater Heritage Partnership to develop a conservation plan for the upper reaches of Fishing Creek watershed in Columbia and Sullivan Counties, PA. The partners on this project included the Fishing Creek Sportsmen Association, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, Trout Unlimited and Fishing Creek Watershed Association. Students from Mansfield University and Point Park University collaborated on the project, as well as, numerous community volunteers.


The conservation plan reports on the results of water chemistry testing, physical mapping of the streams and measurements of the diversity and distribution of aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish. These conservation plans are used by agencies within the state of Pennsylvania to assess the risks and needs of watersheds. Follow-up studies on aquatic macroinvertebrates has been conducted to assess the impact of flooding from Tropical Storm Lee in 2012; and a 10-year study is planned to evaluate the watershed for changes in land use, water chemistry and its biota.
Fishing Creek Watershed Conservation Plan (2011)

Water Chemistry Google Map of Fishing Creek Watershed (2010-11)

Current research in aquatic sciences is being conducted by students at Point Park University, examining the biological health of urban streams around Pittsburgh. Aquatic macroinvertebrates are being used as indicators of water quality, and for identifying potential urban threats to stream biota.
"A River Runs Through It" by The Point (2016)

The research conducted in these studies is used to develop case studies for classes, such as Applications in Environmental Science, that engage students in learning the skills necessary for careers in environmental science. GigaPan technology and actual research brings to life a field study that can be taught in the classroom when time or resources is in short supply.
GigaPan Images of Fishing Creek Watershed
 
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