Friday, 30 June 2017

Science Fair

Science Fair

For science my topic is Are Farms and Towns Polluting our waterways. It was really interesting testing all of our test sites. The water turbidity (clearness of the water) was really bad at the last test site compared to the first test site. My Hypothesis is that I think that the nitrate and phosphate levels will increase as I go further down the river. I think the water turbidity readings will also increase the further down the river we go.

My hypothesis was correct because the turbidity, nitrates and phosphates of the river did increase as we got further down the river.
pH- The pH levels were very constant and fell well within the range of a healthy river.
Turbidity- Only the first sample site had a turbidity under 5 NTU, indicating that all the other sites are at a level that is considered high turbidity and an unhealthy river. When we tested site number two, the turbidity was really high. We think that happened because we dragged the test rig on the bottom of the river, causing the river to stir up. I thought that this test place would have low turbidity because it is close to the head waters. It would make sense that the water would be clearer as it hasn’t come into contact with as much human or animal pollution as it would have further downstream.
Phosphate- Although the phosphate level did increase as you went down the river, all the readings are at a safe level for a healthy river. The spike at Site 5 was after Otorohanga township and Site 9 was after the Mangapiko Stream enters the Waipa- the stream that runs through Te Awamutu- indicating that towns may have a big negative effect on our waterways.
Nitrate- All test sites show a nitrate reading of less than 6.1mg/L which indicates levels within the
healthy range, although levels were rising as you got further down the river.Turbidity is the big concern for the Waipa at this stage although nitrate levels are starting to move e need to identify ways to keep all the factors I have tested within the “healthy river” stage to keep our Waipa safe.into the higher threshold.
Recommendations for the Future
This analysis was done on a day after a recent high rainfall event. Results may be quite different if the river was at a lower level like in summer. The river needs to continue to be monitored to get a better understanding of what the results are at different times of year and at different river levels.

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