Monthly Nature Walks

The Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board hosts a series of monthly nature walks the last Sunday of each month. The walks are led by local experts and are free!


Catch and Count Creek Critters, September 2021Join the Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, the Purcellville Tree and Environment Sustainability Committee, and the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy’s Stream Team to catch and count creek critters at the Chapman DeMary Trail. On Sunday, September 26 from 1 to 4 p.m., certified stream monitors from the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy will lead this fun activity that gives students, Scouts, and others a chance to be citizen scientists and help determine the health of the South Fork Catoctin Creek. The two mother-daughter teams leading this effort became certified stream monitors after attending the Catch and Count Creek Critters event co-hosted by the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and the Tree and Environment Sustainability Committee and led by the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy in 2019. Dress appropriately for getting in the creek. Register online to participate.  

Small critters that live on the bottom of streams are good indicators of water quality. These critters are called benthic (bottom dwelling) macroinvertebrates (organisms without backbones that can be seen without a microscope); some don’t tolerate polluted waters, and others do. During this activity, participants will use large nets to catch the creatures, bring the nets to tables, look for the creatures in the nets, sort them, identify and count them, then release them back into the creek. In past, an interesting variety of creatures have been found, including water pennies, dragonfly larvae, mayfly nymphs, and crayfish. The experts from Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy will guide the activity, and using the data collected by the participants, will make calculations to determine what the creatures indicate about the health of the creek.

For more updates, information, and activities follow Purcellville Parks and Recreation and the Chapman DeMary Trail on Facebook!


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