Additional Water Quality-Related Resources

If you’re interested in helping out with the water quality program at Friends of Sligo Creek, I encourage you to take a look through our Water Quality and other webpages to see if there’s a program you’d like to get involved with. There are many ways to participate – Water WatchDogs, Stormwater, Sweep the Creek, Invasive Plants/RIP – so please have a look and feel free to contact me with any questions, or get in touch with the head of the program that interests you most.

— Pat Ratkowski, Water Quality Committee chairperson

Kiss the Ground – a movie
An inspiring movie about the potential of the soil to sequester large amounts of carbon to help secure humanity’s future. On Netflix or pay for a single view.


The Story of Fungi
A movie about mushrooms and their amazing contribution to the Earth’s ecology – both entertaining and beautiful. On Netflix and elsewhere.

The Life that Springs From Dead Leaves in Streams
While they may look messy or even a little overwhelming, all of those leaves are actually quite important to the health of the stream ecosystem. In fact, many of the bacteria, insects, fish, eels, and herons we enjoy seeing and hearing along the streams rely on this leaf litter, as this article from Knowable Magazine below explains —

In effect, the fallen leaves can act as a grocery store, a home, and a nursery for many of plants, bacteria, fungi and small animals that are the foundation of the streams’ ecosystem. We’ve found butterfly and moth larvae in leaves along the stream banks, and our Biological Monitoring group samples for some of the amazing aquatic invertebrates that live in – and eat up – the leaves during the winter and spring. See this insightful guide from the Seagrant program at Penn State University —

Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
Starting in January 2011, the Center for Watershed Protection investigated outfalls in the Montgomery County part of Sligo Creek for illegal discharges by looking for flows in dry weather. On July 20th, Lori Lilly of the Center made a presentation at a Friends of Sligo Creek program meeting describing their findings and recommendations to the Montgomery County government.

DEP Assessment for Wheaton Branch and Main Stem
On July 2, 2004, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection did this brief study of Wheaton Branch and the Main Stem of Sligo Creek.

Science Fair Project
The Friends of Sligo Creek Water Quality Committee encourages students and interested people to study Sligo Creek and share their findings. One way to do this is through science fair projects. Here is an example of a Sligo Creek-related science fair project:

  • Sligo Creek vs. Sleepy Creek : This December 2004 study compares macro-invertebrates found in Sligo Creek with a creek in West Virginia. A science fair project by Theo Salem-Mackall, a fifth grader at Grace Episcopal Day School in Kensington.

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation Project
A project through the Chesapeake Bay Foundation in which native aquatic plants are grown at home and then planted in the Potomac River.