05-25-09 Field Note: Water flow and invertebrate sampling

Mike Mctee shares an update on Cooney Creek flow rates, aquatic fly emergence and a predatory kill at MPG North.

Posted on 5/25/2009 by Anonymous

Habitat Types: 

Monday May 25, 2009 The warm weather continues to melt high elevation snow and Cooney Creek was flowing at 130 c.f.s. Monday. Where the stream was less turbulent (red square), I sampled invertebrates using a surber sampler. The sampler is put in the water and the rocks within the open square are agitated and invertebrates flow into the trap.
There were five ephemerellidae in the sample.
Leuctridae are very small. This picture was taken under a 10x dissecting microscope. Leuctridae The mayfly below was the largest and most active insect caught, jumping and shaking when touched. The long antennae indicate it is a baetidae.
Northeast Pond Emergence While approaching the pond I saw a fly fisherman's nightmare—a cloud of mayflies over a fishless pond. Mayflies swarm when reproducing; males fly up and down hoping to grab a mate. The trap closest to shore captured two mayflies and two midges. The other traps caught two and three midges. The identity of this mayfly is still to be determined. The caddis larvae below climbed into a trap.
I found caddis in two separate road puddles including the one above. I did not make collections because there were few individuals. The salamander I found in the road puddle last week may have been looking for caddis. The puddle where it was found is now dry (right).
While walking by the entrance marsh I saw this pileated woodpecker. I continued walking towards the bear den and then caught a whiff of carrion. Flies flew off the remains. I’m unsure how fresh the kill was because the scat left behind by the predator looked dry.