Sources for Stream Alkalinity Info?

jeffroey

jeffroey

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I mentioned in another thread that I'm interested in getting smarter on the topic of bedrock influences on stream fertility/alkalinity. I've been wading through descriptions of bedrock formations that are of interest to me and I'm trying to connect specific formations to the alkalinity of the streams that flow over (or through) them. I haven't been able to find a good source of stream alkalinity info.

Reading back through some old posts here, it seems like the PAFBC used to include stream alkalinity info as part of the CL A lists. Unless I'm looking at a different CL A list than others, the FBC no longer includes alkalinity info on the stream lists.

Can anyone point me to a source for stream alkalinity, either present or past, fora very arge sample of streams - like the CL A lists? Anyone have e-copies of CL A lists circa 2015-ish or earlier that would've contrained this info and you're willing to share?

PM works just fine if anyone prefers to take the ocnversation offline.

Thx!
 
Ace Hardware sells kits like this for ~$10. Just compare colors.
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Thx 6x. I'm tracking tools like this and I carry a pH meter as part of my kit. I'm begging for no less than five replies, all saying "bah humbug, just get out and fish it and enjoy the experience, fish or not . . . " but here it goes:

I'm looking for an alkalinity info source that I can use to help me assess streams I'm researching before I get in the car and drive to them. Easiest way to explain (defend) what I'm doing is this:

Over the winter I put together a short list of ~20 new streams for 2024 that have an attractive mix of accessibility, remoteness, gradient, drainage, cover, flow over not horrible bedrock, etc. that make them attractive targets for a day trip. All 20 are streams I haven't fished before nor are they the types of streams that you'll find ref's to in a book by Landis or Gilmore. Streams on that list range anywhere from 130 miles (2-1/2 hours) away to 275 miles (5 hours) away.

Sprinkle in some old favorites that are closer and known that I hit every year and I can't get to all 20 new ones.

I just want a few more tools I can explore that lets me prioritize the ones that are more promising than others before I head out the door.
 
I cant get this to open on my phone but I think this might have it.

 
I cant get this to open on my phone but I think this might have it.

Thx Moon. I logged into the website and poked around a little bit. I didn't find specific refs to alkalinity but there's a TON of info linked to the story map.

I'll keep looking and appreciate you sending the ref.
 
I haven't been able to find a good source of stream alkalinity info.

Reading back through some old posts here, it seems like the PAFBC used to include stream alkalinity info as part of the CL A lists. Unless I'm looking at a different CL A list than others, the FBC no longer includes alkalinity info on the stream lists.

Yes, they used to supply that info on the Class A streams list. No idea why they stopped showing it.
 
Thx 6x. I'm tracking tools like this and I carry a pH meter as part of my kit. I'm begging for no less than five replies, all saying "bah humbug, just get out and fish it and enjoy the experience, fish or not . . . " but here it goes:

I'm looking for an alkalinity info source that I can use to help me assess streams I'm researching before I get in the car and drive to them. Easiest way to explain (defend) what I'm doing is this:

Over the winter I put together a short list of ~20 new streams for 2024 that have an attractive mix of accessibility, remoteness, gradient, drainage, cover, flow over not horrible bedrock, etc. that make them attractive targets for a day trip. All 20 are streams I haven't fished before nor are they the types of streams that you'll find ref's to in a book by Landis or Gilmore. Streams on that list range anywhere from 130 miles (2-1/2 hours) away to 275 miles (5 hours) away.

Sprinkle in some old favorites that are closer and known that I hit every year and I can't get to all 20 new ones.

I just want a few more tools I can explore that lets me prioritize the ones that are more promising than others before I head out the door.
Did you check to see if this list of streams is on the PFBC's wild trout reproduction list? And are they on public land? If so, they are worth fishing.

It is easy to get led astray with the bedrock geology and pH and alkalinity stuff.

The main error is in thinking that if the geology and water chemistry are infertile, that the fishing will be poor.

Some of the best brook trout fishing is in the infertile watersheds. The reason is that there are many miles of stream that are too infertile for brown trout to survive but are fine for brook trout. Those places often have good brook trout fishing, because the brookies have it to themselves. The best habitat spots are occupied by brook trout, not browns.

There are many places in infertile regions where the far headwaters have no fish of any kind. But that is mostly the extreme upper areas. As you fish up from below, you find out where the boundary is.
 
... I carry a pH meter as part of my kit.
I assume you know, but to prevent others from chiming in with pH test kits, that alkalinity and pH don't measure the same thing. Or are you actually looking for just pH?
 
I would reach out to PA DEP. They likely have this data available, or could put you in touch with the agency that does. I know Maryland has a routine monitoring program for a number of non-tidal sampling sites and the analytes tested for include alkalinity. I would be very surprised if PA didn't have a similar program considering participation in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement.
 
...Can anyone point me to a source for stream alkalinity, either present or past, fora very arge sample of streams - like the CL A lists? Anyone have e-copies of CL A lists circa 2015-ish or earlier that would've contrained this info and you're willing to share?

PM works just fine if anyone prefers to take the ocnversation offline.

Thx!

I could be wrong about this, but like my well water I don't think the alkalinity readings are static and can be effected by many factors meaning there may not be a lot of value in lists.

Back when I use to concern myself with such things (sorry, couldn't resist ;)), I carried a roll of this.

That being said, I believe the last year alkalinity was included on the Class A List was 2015. While the list is not up to date, I attached the 2015 Class A list below.

It's a start...

Have fun!!
 

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That being said, I believe the last year alkalinity was included on the Class A List was 2015. While the list is not up to date, I attached the 2015 Class A list beow.
Exactly what I was looking for Bam! Thank you!
It is easy to get led astray with the bedrock geology and pH and alkalinity stuff.

The main error is in thinking that if the geology and water chemistry are infertile, that the fishing will be poor.
A fair reminder. Thank you. I get that there's no magic bedrock type I ought to be looking for or a combination of BR and Alkalinity. It's just a piece of the puzzle and like finding the spine on a rod blank, there's plenty of schools of thought out there.

I for one belong to the school that geology is probably a lower tier influence after habitat (pretty broadly defined), the presence of other species/predators, and a few other considerations. That won't stop me from playing with the data a little until my OCD has me looking at something else 🙂

BTW, I'm totally on board with no real method to the trout fishery healthadness - it may be different for the fish biologists reading this but from my relatively uninformed viewpoint, things still feel somewhat random. Two of the top 10 brookie streams I fish annually aren't even on the NR list.

For those of you that have broken that code, drop me a PM. I'll share my list if your share yours 🙂

I assume you know, but to prevent others from chiming in with pH test kits, that alkalinity and pH don't measure the same thing. Or are you actually looking for just pH?
Yep. Very aware of the difference. I simply ref'd the pH meter to indicate that I was aware of packable tools that could be bought and used. It was a late night comment.
 
I would reach out to PA DEP. They likely have this data available, or could put you in touch with the agency that does. I know Maryland has a routine monitoring program for a number of non-tidal sampling sites and the analytes tested for include alkalinity. I would be very surprised if PA didn't have a similar program considering participation in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement.
I think the integrated report @moon1284 linked above will get me there. Just tons of info the wade thru . . . Thx.
 
Just a note regarding the natural reproduction list and the absence of a number of named and unnamed WT streams in Pa. Other than some streams not having been on the PFBC radar as potential wild trout streams or having been on the radar but not surveyed yet, there are many that technically don’t need to be surveyed for them to be classified as WT streams. Those that flow into or are upstream from streams or stream sections that are classified as WT streams are already recognized as WT streams by virtue of their locations despite not being on the official list. They receive the same WT stream protections as the streams that are actually designated on the list.
 
Just a note regarding the natural reproduction list and the absence of a number of named and unnamed WT streams in Pa. Other than some streams not having been on the PFBC radar as potential wild trout streams or having been on the radar but not surveyed yet, there are many that technically don’t need to be surveyed for them to be classified as WT streams. Those that flow into or are upstream from streams or stream sections that are classified as WT streams are already recognized as WT streams by virtue of their locations despite not being on the official list. They receive the same WT stream protections as the streams that are actually designated on the list.
How does that work? If they are not entered into the database as wild trout streams, how do the people know that those protections should be applied to these streams?
 
Chp 105 which regulates encroachment and obstruction of waterways references Fish and Boat Code for the definition of wild trout streams, specifically chp 57.11 b.
(4)Tributary linkages. Tributaries to wild trout streams are classified as wild trout streams for their function as habitat for segments of wild trout populations, including nurseries and refuges, and in sustaining water quality necessary for wild trout.

 
Here's another useful resource that I still use even now: Trout Unlimited's Guide to Pennsylvania Limestones Streams https://a.co/d/apcll7G
 
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Thx 6x. I'm tracking tools like this and I carry a pH meter as part of my kit. I'm begging for no less than five replies, all saying "bah humbug, just get out and fish it and enjoy the experience, fish or not . . . " but here it goes:

I'm looking for an alkalinity info source that I can use to help me assess streams I'm researching before I get in the car and drive to them. Easiest way to explain (defend) what I'm doing is this:

Over the winter I put together a short list of ~20 new streams for 2024 that have an attractive mix of accessibility, remoteness, gradient, drainage, cover, flow over not horrible bedrock, etc. that make them attractive targets for a day trip. All 20 are streams I haven't fished before nor are they the types of streams that you'll find ref's to in a book by Landis or Gilmore. Streams on that list range anywhere from 130 miles (2-1/2 hours) away to 275 miles (5 hours) away.

Sprinkle in some old favorites that are closer and known that I hit every year and I can't get to all 20 new ones.

I just want a few more tools I can explore that lets me prioritize the ones that are more promising than others before I head out the door.
Jeff,

i do not want to poo poo those kits that they sell, but they really do not get accurate enough results that you need to look at most wild trout streams (depending on where you are fishing) not to toot my own horn, but i am completing a 2 year long senior project of acid rain remidation of bowman's creek. I am seeing alkalinity number of 1-2 ppm / mg/l as CaCo3 (how we measure alkalinity)

If you really want to measure alkalinity you need to do a gran titration, adding acid to a water sample and then convert this to meq (mill equivalents) of CaCo3 in the water body. You are not measuring alkalinity but rather ANC (acid neutralization capacity).

those small kits have detection limits of 20 mg/l as CaCo3, and are often much higher than any of our streams at least in my region.

Hope this helps a little bit
 
Jeff,

i do not want to poo poo those kits that they sell, but they really do not get accurate enough results that you need to look at most wild trout streams (depending on where you are fishing) not to toot my own horn, but i am completing a 2 year long senior project of acid rain remidation of bowman's creek. I am seeing alkalinity number of 1-2 ppm / mg/l as CaCo3 (how we measure alkalinity)

If you really want to measure alkalinity you need to do a gran titration, adding acid to a water sample and then convert this to meq (mill equivalents) of CaCo3 in the water body. You are not measuring alkalinity but rather ANC (acid neutralization capacity).

those small kits have detection limits of 20 mg/l as CaCo3, and are often much higher than any of our streams at least in my region.

Hope this helps a little bit
What type of type of acid rain remediation is being done now, or being planned?

And is some group still stocking Bowmans Creek up in the state gamelands? If so, do you know which group?

I fished up in the SGLs a long time ago, when it was unstocked. Then someone began adding limestone to the tributaries, then the group began stocking hatchery trout.
 
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