Blacktail Deer Creek NEON - United States of America
Blacktail Deer Creek NEON
United States of America
Blacktail Deer Creek is a core aquatic site within NEON's Domain 12: Northern Rockies. Blacktail Deer Creek is a small, fast freshwater stream in the Blacktail Deer Plateau. It supports trout, pike and other game species. Blacktail Deer Creek (BLDE) is located in the Northern Range of Yellowstone National Park just south of the Montana-Wyoming state line. It is a wadeable stream aquatic site covering a 1000-m reach of Blacktail Deer Creek, one of several creeks and streams running through the Blacktail Deer Plateau at the northern edge of the park. It is part of a watershed area encompassing 35 km2 (13.5 square miles) of the Northern Range. BLDE is located just two miles from NEON's Yellowstone Northern Range/Frog Rock (YELL) terrestrial site. The sites are easily accessed from Yellowstone's Grand Loop Road. The site is a ¾-mile off-trail hike from the Frog Rock gravel pit, where the park stores gravel for maintenance of roads and trails. The land outside the park is sparsely populated. The nearest communities (Gardiner, population 875, and Cooke City, population 150) are located in Montana on the northern border of the park. This site has one meteorological station located in the riparian area and one meteorological station above water on a buoy. The met stations are outfitted with the a subset of the same sensors used at terrestrial sites. Measurements include wind speed and direction, air temperature, barometric pressure, relative humidity, shortwave radiation, and PAR.Remote sensing surveys of this site collect lidar, spectrometer and high resolution RGB camera data. Seven groundwater wells throughout the site collect specific conductivity, water tempertaure, and elevation of groundwater. This site has one buoy-mounted sensor station and an inlet station and outlet station. At the buoy, the automated instrument measurements are: PAR at water surface, PAR below water surface, temperature at a specific depth in surface water, water quality (specific conductivity, chlorophyll a, dissolved oxygen content, pH turbidity, and fDOM), and nitrate. At the inlet and outlet stations, the measurements are: PAR below water surface, elevation of surface water, and temperature in surface water. Field ecologists collect the following types of observational data at this site: aquatic organisms (Aquatic Microbes (surface water), macroinvertebratesmicroalgae, plants and macroalgae, zooplankton. Biogeochemical data on plants,sediment water and particulates. As well as physical aquatic data on bathymetric maps, stage,secchi depth and depth profiles, and riparian assessment.
General Characteristics, Purpose, History
Temperatures are warming in the Northern Rockies at a rate faster than the global average. In recent years, Yellowstone has seen reduced snowpack in the winter due to rising temperatures and reduced snowfall. These changes impact the entire watershed, which depends on melting snows in the spring to feed rivers and streams and provide moisture for growing plants. NEON data from BLDE will help researchers monitor climate change in the Northern Range and its impact on aquatic species, stream morphology, water quality and other riparian measurements.
Affiliation and Network Specific Information