From the field: winter 2015 aquatic sampling

March 10, 2015

A few of the technicians from D09 and D02 share their experience collecting samples during the dead of winter:

D09 field technicians, often accompanied by domain manager Andrea Andeau, collect lake water samples year-round.  During a recent outing on a sunny, 0 degree F, North Dakota day, field technicians Jacob Eldridge and Ben Carroll discovered an interesting surprise while sampling a prairie pothole. While collecting water samples, they noticed that the extra oxygen provided by the drilled holes drew some fish to the surface of the lake as well as into the kemmerer, the vessel used to collect lake water for analysis.  Of course, they returned the fish to its habitat, but it made an interesting "fish tale." 

Surprise sample:  Fathead Minnow

D02 field technicians Leah Card and Mary Rockey often dig through several inches of ice and snow to access the stream at the Posey Creek site to conduct sampling. According to Leah, "The hardest part of stream sampling in the winter is plunging our bare hands into the frigid water to fill the various bottles and syringes." Mary and Leah work as a team and take turns in order to allow their hands to thaw during the sampling process. 

Mary Rockey sampling at Posey Creek.

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