Brook Trout and e. coli – how in the world are they related?
To answer that question, click here to read a piece by Bobby Whitescarver distributed by the Bay Journal New Service.
FOMR began an E. coli monitoring program in the Upper Middle River area in July. Sites on Back Creek, Eidson Creek, and the main stem of the River from Summerdean downstream to the bridge over the River on Rt. 254 were included.
Volunteers collect water samples once a month from 12 different sites on those three waterways plus one sample from Bells Creek just before it enters Middle River.
What is E. coli bacteria? “E. coli” is an abbreviation for Escherichia coli – a bacteria that grows at elevated temperatures and is associated only with the fecal material of warm-blooded animals.
The presence of E. coli in aquatic environments indicates that the water has been contaminated with the fecal material of man or other animals.
Fecal coliform concentrations are reported in units of the number of bacterial colonies (CFUs) per 100 milliliters of sample water (#CFU/100 mL). In Virginia, a concentration less than 235 CFU/100 mL is considered OK for human recreational purposes.
Anything over 235 CFU/100 mL is considered unhealthy. The presence of fecal contamination is an indicator that a potential health risk exists for individuals exposed to the water.