Monitoring Site Selection and Details

The initial selection of the 12 network streams was based on urban land use density and spatial coverage across the greater Kansas City metropolitan region. One stream, Cedar Creek, was selected as a reference stream and another, Coffee Creek, a headwater stream to the Blue River was also considered an urban fringe stream. Both Cedar and Coffee Creek have had significant development in recent years and their utility as reference streams is in question. Streams currently in the network are: Blue River, Brenner Heights Creek, Brush Creek, Cedar Creek, Coffee Creek, Indian Creek, Jersey Creek, Line Creek, Mill Creek, Shoal Creek, Tomahawk Creek and Turkey Creek.

On each stream three monitoring sites were chosen, typically a lower, middle, and upper reach. These were selected based on accessibility to the public, the presence of the three main stream macrohabitats (pools, riffles and runs), visual inspection and best professional judgment. It is expected that minor changes to specific monitoring locations may occur as more is learned about the streams.

Monitoring sites lengths were determined by measuring the average wetted stream width and multiplying by a factor of 20. Minimum and maximum lengths were 100 and 300 meters, respectively. Sites were divided into 5 transects based on the length of the site. For example if a site was 100 meters in length, transects would be flagged at 0, 25, 50, 75 and 100 meters. Chemistry, in situ measures, phytoplankton and bacteria samples were taken at the middle transect. Sediment, periphyton, macroinvertebrate samples were taken at each transect and composited. Fish samples were taken throughout the monitoring site. Information regarding sampling can be found here.