Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nose Hill Pond Blog, by Callum

Nose Hill Blog.

While at Nose Hill I was really intrigued by the hill its self and the rest of the physical geography. In addition I wondered how the geography and the way people are using the land are affecting the water quality of the pond.
So my research question is: How has physical geography and human land use affected the water quality of the pond.
In order to understand how these factors affected the pond at Nose Hill I needed to take a look at some other ponds in areas with different geography and forms of land use. I took samples and observations of geography from s slough in northern Breaspaw and the Duck Pond at Butterfeild Acres.

Site 1.Nose Hill Pond:

          This pond is located in the far southwest corner of Nose Hill Park. It is at the bottom of the hill. While it is at the bottom of nose hill the pond’s elevation is still comparatively high. If we wanted to get to the very bottom of the hill we would end up in the Atlantic Ocean, but in Calgary, we would be in the bow river valley. Looking more closely at the pond we see that there are a number of gullies leading down to the pond on the north side and there is a dyke between the pond and John Laurie Boulevard to the south. On both the east and west sides there are hills. These geographical formations basically form a basin that collects all the runoff from the western area of the hill and the eastern areas of Edgemont.
Figure 1. Pond Located in southwest
corner of Nose Hill Park.
This photo is looking to the northeast.
I took a water sample and did a battery of tests on it. The results were

pH.                                          8.2
General Hardness (GH)        100ppm
Carbonate Hardness (KH)   70ppm
Calcium (Ca)                          40ppm
Iron (Fe)                                0.00mg/l
Phosphate (PO4)                   0.00mg/l
Nitrite (NO2)                          0.00mg/l

Figure 2. My testing supplies.
These tests were designed
specifically for aquariums,
the same type that we use in the lab 
at SWC.

Figure 3. The slough in northern Bearspaw is very shallow as we can see in this photo. This image was captured from the southeastern corner of the pond. It curves around the hill in the right of the picture.
Site 2. Bearspaw Slough:
This pond is situated in the mixed woodlands and rolling hills that we see all over the foothills of Alberta. This particular pond is flanked by hills on two sides. On the other sides there are open areas slightly higher than the pond. One leads to a slight downhill and the other a slight uphill that takes you slowly up toward the east. While this pond acts in a similar manner to the one on Nose Hill, its drainage area is much smaller. It is restricted to the hills and hilltops within close proximity to it. The pond is also considerably shallower than the pond at Nose Hill.

As at the other pond I took water samples and conducted the same tests.

pH                               8.4
GH                               240ppm
KH                               140ppm
Calcium (Ca)              60ppm
Iron (Fe)                    0.00mg/l       
Phosphate (PO4)       0.0mg/l
Nitrite(NO2)               0.0mg/l

Site 3. Butterfeild Acres Duck Pond
This pond is quite a bit smaller than the other two ponds surveyed. In addition it is fairly close to the top of a hill. On the east side there is about 80m before the top of the hill. On the east there is a flat, slightly down-sloping area. The south side has a fairly steep hill that leads toward a road. On the north side is a hill, but the pond is only 30m from the crest. With this placement close to the top of the hill, the runoff should be minimal and with the slope on the south side, there should be good drainage away from the site. As with the past two I did the same tests.

pH                                           7.8
GH                                           340ppm
KH                                           310ppm
Calcium (Ca)                          140ppm
Iron (Fe)                                0.00mg/l
Phosphate (PO4)                   Above 2.5 mg/l
Nitrite(NO2)                           0.01mg/l
Fig.3. This is the results from my phosphate
 test. Here you  can see that the phosphate
levels are quite elevated.

           So you may be thinking, ‘what is this kid doing. He has just told me all the data, but that does not answer his question. When is he going to answer his study question?’
Well to find the answer to my question you will just have to listen to my podcast and watch my vodcast, because without them you have just read all this for nothing.

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