Aquatic life encompasses all living things that spend either all or a portion of there life in a body of water. This broad term includes fish, mollusks, benthic macroinvertebrates, and other insects. Benthic (meaning “bottom-dwelling”) macroinvertebrates are aquatic insects such as stoneflies, mayflies and caddisflies. These insects live a portion of their lives in a stream under rocks and other submerged habitat. As they age they mature into flying insects which leave the in-stream habitat. These insects are very beneficial to the ecosystem and their presence (or absence) tells scientists a lot about the water quality of the stream.
Little Alamance Creek’s impairment is due to an insufficient amount of aquatic life at the 5 sample locations. It is our goal to restore the aquatic life to a level which meets the aquatic life threshold. NCDEQ’s website offers more detailed information on the aquatic life standards.