Most City offices closed Wednesday, June 19, to observe Juneteenth

The City of Portland recognizes Juneteenth as a formal day of remembrance to honor Black American history and the end of slavery in the United States. Learn about Juneteenth.

Clean Rivers Education – Resources about Macroinvertebrates

Graphic shows blue background with white outlines of bugs including mayfly, water boatman, caddis fly, snail, and dragonfly
Macroinvertebrates are animals without a backbone that you can see without a microscope. They are excellent indicators of watershed health and are an important food for birds, fish, and amphibians. Use these education resources to find out more about these fascinating creatures!

Local Resources


Freshwater Mussels of the Willamette (9 min.)
From Oregon Public Broadcasting. Learn how freshwater mussels can help us understand the health of the Willamette River.

Macroinvertebrate Sampling ID Card
Use this identification card to learn which macroinvertebrates are sensitive, somewhat sensitive, or tolerant to stream conditions.

More Resources


Deep Lookoffers ultra-HD wildlife and nature videos created by KQED San Francisco and presented by PBS Digital Studios. The videos are relatively short and the videography is amazing. Consider pairing these videos with the I Notice I Wonder template.

A Freshwater Rock Star: The Net Spinning Caddisfly (4:30 min.)
From Stroud Water Research Center. Learn how net-spinning caddisflies are ecosystem engineers — organisms that maintain, modify, or create habitats to the benefit of the entire ecosystem.

Background Information and Online Identification Guides

Atlas of Common Freshwater Macroinvertebrates of Eastern North America — Look at detailed photos of macroinvertebrates, learn about their habitats, how to identify them, what they eat and, adaptations they’ve developed to survive in their underwater habitats! To download free open source images, training presentations, detailed visuals and more, check out their Resources page. Watch the Site Video Tutorial or check out the Quick Start Guide before you get started.

Aqua Bug Identification App — From the Izaak Walton League of America's Save Our Streams Program, this free app, available from the Apple Store or Google Play uses a dichotomous key – a tool that provides a series of choices that will lead to correct identification of each macroinvertebrate.

Water Quality Mobile App — From the Stroud™ Water Research Center, this app for purchase from the Apple Store or Google Play includes data entry, identification, and learning features about chemical (dissolved oxygen, E. coli, pH, nitrate, turbidity), physical (water temperature, turbidity), and biological (digital field guide to macroinvertebrates) water-quality parameters.