The Phoenix Feature

6th Grade Salmon Watch

Franklin School 6th graders happily braved wet and chilly conditions for this year’s Salmon Watch field trip on November 7th. Salmon Watch is an experiential field trip program that teaches youth about salmon and healthy watersheds. 

Students rotated to 4 different stations located along the banks of the Alsea River. Each station explored a different topic: Salmon Biology, Macroinvertebrates, Water Quality, and Riparian Areas.  At Salmon Biology students learned about the life cycle of salmon and were able to watch for Salmon coming up the river for spawning or view carcasses that had already completed their life cycle. At Water Quality, 6th graders measured water temperature, PH, dissolved oxygen and turbidity levels. Then at Riparian Areas students found out how bank stability, shade, water storage and filtering, and wildlife habitat all contribute to the function of the Riparian area, which is the area of land surrounding a water body. Lastly, they collect real, wriggling macroinvertebrates from the stream, sort them and determine what their presence is indicating about the stream site.

6th graders will also have the opportunity to build on this knowledge throughout the year by participating in salmon dissections and also, raising and then releasing salmon into Dixon creek later this year.

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