Dear River and Watershed Friends,
Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers closed out the bacteria sampling season with 100% sampling at 100% of the eleven sites on the Merrimack River from Franklin to Bow and on the Pemigewasset, Winnipesaukee, and Contoocook Rivers. Yesterday was the last sampling day of the season. We plan to begin again in late June 2018.
You may recall that we had high counts at Site 6 on July 13 and then at Site 1 on July 27? We checked the sites and found nothing unusual. For this last sample date, we have an identical, high reading at Site 1 again: 1,299.7 colonies per 100 milliliters of river sample water. One of our working theories for why we had bacteria spikes is that algal growth, which has been common this summer, has created a medium for bacteria to breed. There may have been transient animal (including human animals) activity in the area just before the samples were taken. We remain vigilant and will be watching conditions at these two sites.
As a reminder, the readings shown below are the number of E. coli bacteria colonies for every 100 millilitres of water. Warm blooded animals (including humans) all have E. coli in their guts. State designated swim beaches are not allowed to exceed 88 colonies and Class B waters (all of our sites are Class B waters) should be below 406 colonies. Here are the details.
|Site number and description|
|3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant||198.9|
|4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant||48.1|
|5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park||61.3|
|6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass||33.6|
|7 Contoocook at Rivco||44.8|
|8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls||52.8|
|9 Merrimack Manchester St||14.6|
|10 Merrimack Blue Seal||59.4|
|11 Merrimack Garvins Falls||14.4|
You’ll hear from us again next year when sampling begins in June. In the meantime, there’s always work to be done. Bug Nights 2018 is slated to begin in January. If you want to be part of the winter fun, please visit the UMMP page or call 603.796.2615. We’d be happy to tell you all about it.
Thank you to our volunteer monitors, Adopt-a-River Site Sponsors, sample courier, and Franklin Waste Water Treatment Plant. We cannot begin to express how much we appreciate your leadership and dedication to this important program. As volunteers who manage an all-volunteer staffed program, our volunteers inspire us.
Please visit our fresh and newly designed forum at MerrimackRiver.org/forum.
You can also find us at MerrimackRiver.org for further information or don’t hesitate to contact us at UMMP@MerrimackRiver.org or 603.796.2615 should you have any questions.
Michele L Tremblay Stephen C. Landry
Program Manager Sampling Supervisor