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Merrimack watershed bacteria results: August 20, 2019

Dear River and Watershed Friends,

Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers continue 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. 

The results shown below are the probable 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
1 Pemigewasset63
2 Winnipesaukee62
3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant10
4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant30
5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park41
6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass52
7 Contoocook at Rivco30
8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls20
9 Merrimack Manchester St10
10 Merrimack Blue Seal20
11 Merrimack Garvins Falls20

All sample results are as of Tuesday morning, August 20, 2019. Results may change from day-to-day, depending on upstream conditions and rainstorms.

This week, we have very good results. All sites meet the Class B designation for the Merrimack River. They all fall well within the more stringent designated swim beach standards, as well. The watershed had another rinse over the weekend and then a quick dry in the early part of the week. These low bacteria counts are expected after those weather events. The upper Merrimack watershed is relatively clean and healthy. We often say, “When it rains, it’s poor.” You may wish to wait a day or so after it rains before recreating in a surface water. 

You’ll hear from us again after the last sampling day of the season on September 3. 

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.

Sincerely,

Michele L Tremblay                          Stephen C Landry
Program Manager                             Sampling Supervisor

Merrimack watershed bacteria results: August 6, 2019

Dear River and Watershed Friends,

Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers continue 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. 

The results shown below are the probable 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 
1 Pemigewasset31
2 Winnipesaukee41
3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant31
4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant30
5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park10
6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass63
7 Contoocook at Rivco30
8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls30
9 Merrimack Manchester St10
10 Merrimack Blue Seal10
11 Merrimack Garvins Falls<10

All sample results are as of Tuesday morning, August 6, 2019. Results may change from day-to-day, depending on upstream conditions and rainstorms.

This week, we have very good results. All sites meet the Class B designation for the Merrimack River. They all fall well within the more stringent designated swim beach standards, as well. The watershed had a rinse last week and then went through a dryer cycle for a few days so these values are expected. The upper Merrimack watershed is relatively clean and healthy. We often say, “When it rains, it’s poor.” You may wish to wait a day or so after it rains before recreating in a surface water. 

You’ll hear from us again after the August 20 sampling day. 

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.

Sincerely,

Michele L Tremblay                          Stephen C Landry
Program Manager                             Sampling Supervisor

Merrimack watershed bacteria results: July 23, 2019

Dear River and Watershed Friends,

Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers continue 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. 

The results shown below are the probable 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
1 Pemigewasset41
2 Winnipesaukee185
3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant63
4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant213
5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park63
6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass41
7 Contoocook at Rivco134
8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls31
9 Merrimack Manchester St63
10 Merrimack Blue Seal160
11 Merrimack Garvins Falls146

All sample results are as of Tuesday morning, July 23, 2019. Results may change from day-to-day, depending on upstream conditions and rainstorms.

The story this week is that we are seeing some elevated numbers compared to two weeks ago. You will recall that up until this past Tuesday, it has been very dry. Beginning overnight on Monday and into Tuesday, we saw some heavy rains. Rain washes soil, contaminants, and pathogens, such as E. coli, into surface waters such as rivers and ponds. Although this week’s samples are all within the Class B standard, it is a reminder that most pollution in our rivers comes from the land and not from pipes, as was the case before the federal Clean Water Act went into effect. The upper Merrimack watershed is still a relatively clean and healthy river. We often say, “When it rains, it’s poor.” You may wish to wait a day or so after it rains before recreating in a surface water. 

You’ll hear from us again after the August 6 sampling day. 

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.

Sincerely,


Michele L Tremblay                          Stephen C Landry
Program Manager                             Sampling Supervisor

Merrimack watershed bacteria results: July 9, 2019

Dear River and Watershed Friends,

Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers continue 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.

The results shown below are the probable 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
1 Pemigewasset107
2 Winnipesaukee31
3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant<10
4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant10
5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park<10
6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass31
7 Contoocook at Rivco20
8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls108
9 Merrimack Manchester St10
10 Merrimack Blue Seal20
11 Merrimack Garvins Falls<10

All sample results are as of Tuesday morning, July 9, 2019. Results may change from day-to-day, depending on upstream conditions and rainstorms.

You’ll hear from us again after the July 23 sampling day. 

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.

Sincerely,

Michele L Tremblay                          Stephen C Landry
Program Manager                             Sampling Supervisor

Merrimack watershed bacteria results: June 25, 2019

Dear River and Watershed Friends,

Upper Merrimack Monitoring Program volunteers began 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. This week begins an excellent trend.

All other samples are below the Class A standard and well within the Class B standard.

The results shown below are the probable 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
1 Pemigewasset86
2 Winnipesaukee20
3 Merrimack above FWWT Plant10
4 Merrimack below FWWT Plant31
5 Merrimack Jamie Welch Park75
6 Merrimack Route 4 Bypass74
7 Contoocook at Rivco30
8 Merrimack Sewalls Falls52
9 Merrimack Manchester St41
10 Merrimack Blue Seal52
11 Merrimack Garvins Falls31

You’ll hear from us again after the July 9 sampling day. 

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.

Sincerely,

Michele L Tremblay                          Stephen C Landry
Program Manager                             Sampling Supervisor

Is it really over?: Bug Night #11

“I don’t know what I am going to do,” mourned the Bug Night-er with tears in his eyes. He was bereft at the thought of no macroinvertebrates in his future until 2020.

The female White Coat tried to bolster his spirits with the promise of field work in the summer but he was inconsolable.

The other Bug Night-ers began to realize the gravity of the loss and mourned them each in their own private way. There would never be any more Bug Nights 2019. There would be no further strange emails in the in boxes of Bug Night-ers. There would see be no further interactions between Bug Night-ers and their macroinvertebrate friends.

“Whatever shall I do?” cried the Bug Night-er, “Wherever shall I go?”

The White Coats did give a damn but the Bug Nights contract ended on this very evening and they were very tired. Field work would begin in a matter of weeks.

The Bug Night-er would have to find comfort in his own way. Given his history of being too familiar with some of the more dangerous macroinvertebrates, the White Coats were concerned.

“I will have to find a way to have my own bug nights,” moaned the Bug Night-er in a nearly unintelligible sob, “I have other friends who care more than you.”

The White Coats assured the grieving Bug Night-er that that was not the case. Unfortunately, it was too late. The Bug Night-er was enmeshed in another case. Perhaps his last. Only time and a good stereomicroscope would tell.

It is the end. At least for 2019. Let’s make the most of our last night together. We will see you on Wednesday, May 15, 2019 (that’s tonight) beginning at 6:00 PM sharp
.

It’s all a charade: Bug Night #10

The Bug Night-er put one arm over her head, as if she was a cat, grooming her face—except she wasn’t a cat. She was trying to emulate her favorite bug for charades.

“Limnophilidae!” shouted another Bug Night-er with inappropriate confidence.

The charader was deflated. She attempted to emulate a dorsal hump on her second abdominal segment. She loved this bug and felt that everyone should recognize it by now. The sitting room Bug Night-ers gazed at their navels. Some, seeming uncomfortable, fled the room.

“Leptoceridae,” whispered the hovering standing room Bug Night-er.

The female White Coat asked the hoverer to speak louder and with more confidence.

“Leptoceridae!” she repeated with feeling.

“Ah, now I see it,” chimed in one of the other Bug Night-ers.

The next Bug Night-er began his Gerridae pantomine. More navels received gazes.

Look into my eyes and listen: Bug Night #9

“How many times have we told you,” asked the insect. It sighed the sigh of the most world weary being ever. The Bug Night-er was stunned. He had heard that the bugs could speak to volunteers but he thought that it was a metaphor, like a horse whisperer.

“The White Coats need you to organize us by order in your Petri dish,” continued the dreamy eyed bug, “See, there are Roman numerals etched into the bottom of each of the Petri dish’s four compartments.”

The insect’s six-legged companion chimed in, “Write down those four Roman numerals on your scratch paper, and indicate what you have in each and how many: see how some of the humans are using the clickers from the sorting days?”

The White Coats were grateful for the intervention. They were racing around the laboratory in figures-eight, trying to keep up with the more challenging identifications and assuring that they closed down the laboratory no later than 8:59 PM. They listened intently. It was wonderful having other volunteers—or bugs—parrot their nightly instructions from over the many years of Bug Nights.

“Identify. Organize. Write. Don’t wait until the last minute,” said the insect, “That’s the key to a satisfying Bug Night.

The Bug Night-er grabbed a clicker and scratch paper. Quietly, the female White Coat slipped him a sharpened pencil. The Bug Night-er did as he was told. What fruit was there in arguing with a bug? They were small but legion. Better not to find out.

You could learn a lot from a bug. We will see you on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 (that’s tonight) beginning at 6:00 PM sharp.

If you are enjoying these messages and would like to see the archives from the past few years, please visit http://www.merrimackriver.org/forum

Identify me or else: Bug Night #8

“It’s not rocket science,” breathed the insect, “We’ve been through this more times than I have compound eyes.”

The insect was so close that the man could feel and smell the insect’s hot breath. The insect held the man in its mandibles and considerable tarsi. It was no surprise that it smelled of rotten leaves. Oddly, it smelled also of denatured alcohol. The White Coats looked up from their quality control stations. This was nothing they had not seen before. It could end one of two ways. They continued checking samples.

The insect continued with its controlled but rage-filled tirade. “Did you even count my legs? Check the length of my antennae? How about checking my underarms and abdominal segments for gills?”

The man would like to have answered but he did not. First, he could not given that the insect’s mandibles were closing over his throat. Second, well, second didn’t really matter but second, he didn’t have a good answer. The insect was correct. They had been through this identification exercise more times than he could count. Instead, he reached down and flipped open his Macroinvertebrates of the Upper Merrimack to the dichotomous key pages. The insect glanced down and seemed to understand. It loosened its grip. The man pointed to the first question.

“Abdomen with branched gills and scattered hairs” or “Abdomen without gills, small,” the man choked out aloud. The insect released him with a hiss of approval and stood by, waiting for the disposition of its abdomen assessment.

We have line drawings, photographs, and dichotomous keys. You can do it. We will see you on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 beginning at 6:00 PM sharp.

The Bug Man always rings twice: Bug Night #7

There are some things that you just can’t dial in, thought the quietly competent Bug Night-er. Take Bug Nights, for instance. It was an all-hands-on deck, roll up your sleeves kind of thing. She had heard the White Coats whispering about legendary Bug Night-ers who took home specimens to identify over the summer. She couldn’t believe it was possible. It seemed that she needed not only the White Coats’ guidance on difficult samples but also the camaraderie that came from an evening of like-minded people coming together for a common purpose. Even the peripheral, non-bug-related conversations were as vital to her as the professional assistance. Where else could she discuss the subtleties of trochantin and vacuum cleaner-like labrum of caddisflies? She looked at her watch. It was only 11:00 AM on Tuesday: more than twenty-four hours until she could be sitting in front of a glowing stereoscope, breathing denatured alcohol fumes, and tucking into the first identifications of the season after a long winter of subsampling.

She was still lost in thoughts about bug body parts while relaxing at home later that day. She was distracted with her anticipation of another wonderful Wednesday at Bug Nights. The family still maintained a land line and she was so surprised to hear it ring that she picked it up without thinking or looking at it. Immediately, she regretted her decision. It was little comfort to her that she was able to identify the insect right before the flames lit up the room.

When opportunity calls, don’t pick up the phone, head to Bug Nights. We will see you on Wednesday, April 10, 2019 beginning at 6:00 PM sharp.

If you are enjoying these messages and would like to see the archives from the past few years, please visit http://www.merrimackriver.org/forum