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Upper Clear Creek watershed aquatic chemistry and biota surveys, 2004-5, Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, Shasta County, California

November 7, 2012

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the National Park Service and Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, performed a comprehensive aquatic biota survey of the upper Clear Creek watershed, Shasta County, California, during 2004-5. Data collected in this study can provide resource managers with information regarding aquatic resources, watershed degradation, and regional biodiversity within Whiskeytown National Recreation Area. Surveys of water chemistry, bed-sediment chemistry, algae assemblages, benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages, aquatic vertebrate assemblages, in-stream habitat characteristics, and sediment heterogeneity were conducted at 17 stream sites during both 2004 and 2005, with an additional 4 sites surveyed in 2005. A total of 67 bed-sediment samples were analyzed for major and trace inorganic element concentrations. Forty-six water samples were analyzed for trace metals and nutrients. A total of 224 taxa of invertebrates were collected during these surveys. Eleven fish species, seven of which were native, and two species of larval amphibians, were collected. A total of 24 genera of soft algae and 159 taxa of diatoms were identified. To date, this survey represents the most comprehensive inventory of aquatic resources within Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, and this information can serve as a baseline for future monitoring efforts and to inform management decisions.