Welcome to Environmental Inquiry: authentic scientific research for high school students  
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For Teachers
For Students
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 Invasive Species
 Long-term Research
Current Location Arrow Watersheds
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 Assessing Toxic Risk
 Invasion Ecology
 Decay and Renewal
 Watershed Dynamics
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Why study roadside ditches?

  • You can make a real contribution. Not much research has been conducted on ditches. Your studies could help local highway departments, planning agencies, and other groups to make better decisions about ditch design and management.

  • It's fun. Using Global Positioning System (GPS) technology, you can map ditches and see how they connect to make a network that drains into a lake or other water body in your watershed. Most ditches have not yet been mapped, so you can collect valuable data on ditch lengths, locations, management types, and surrounding land uses.

  • It's important. Through observing ditches and mapping the connections between impervious surfaces, roadside ditches, and nearby streams, you can help build better understanding the hydrologic linkages between stream ecosystem health, watershed land uses, and management practices.

How do ditches relate to streams?
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