Creek Critters!

Can you identify a common netspinner caddisfly, fishfly larva or riffle beetle larva? With Audubon Naturalist Society's new Creek Critters smartphone app the answer is a resounding YES!

Get the free Creek Critters App

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iPhone users: visit the Apple App Store to download the app. 

Android users: visit Google Play to download the app.

The Creek Critters app shows users how to find the small organisms that live in freshwater streams. It walks users through identifying these benthic macroinvertebrates, or creek critters, through a series of visual cues: Does it have a shell? Does it look like a worm? The app provides line drawings, photos, captions and other features to illustrate characteristics, other “easily confused with” critters, and tolerance to pollution. A Stream Health Report is generated based on the user’s findings, and the report is added to a map once the user submits the data. 



 Independent Audubons Check Out Creek Critters App

Creek Critters app usersANS hosted representatives from New Hampshire, Massachusettes and Connecticut Audubon on July 7, 2015. These other Independent Audubons visisted Woodend to learn more about the Creek Critters app to how they might adopt it for use in their own service areas.  As part of the visit, the group joined Carfax President and app supporter Dick Raines and ANS summer campers for a great demo at a nearby stream of the Creek Critters app in action.   



What Partners are Saying about the App 

“[The Creek Critters app is] such a good way to break down the barriers of technical expertise and sampling materials by giving that information to you, literally, in the palm of your hands.” - Karen Zeiter, Rock Creek Conservancy Program Manager

“The app is very user friendly, with easy to follow instructions.  Because it gives a lot of visual clues, it’s a great tool for first-time monitors as they try to identify the various aquatic invertebrate species.”  - Dan Schwartz, Soil Scientist for the NOVA Soil & Water Conservation District

“People enjoyed the app and were able to catch and ID critters with very little help from the supervising volunteers.” -  Sarah Morse, Executive Director of the Little Falls Watershed Alliance 

Citizen Scientists Make a Splash with new App at Creek Week Events

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Little Falls Watershed Alliance Creek Week Event June 13 App users find out who is living in my creek Rock Creek Conservancy Creek Week Event at Joseph's Branch Fun in Fairfax for Creek Week at South Run

Thank you to all of our local partners for hosting streamside events around the region during Creek Week!  

Rock Creek Conservancy 

Neighbors of Northwest Branch

Little Falls Watershed Alliance 

Friends of Accotink Creek 

Fairfax County Parks Authority

NOVA Soil and Water Conservation District/Fairfax County Parks Authority   

Rock Creek Hills Citizen’s Association        

Report a Problem

Washington, DC: District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority; DC Water 24-Hour Command Center, 202- 612-3400, or tweet @dcwater

Montgomery County, Maryland: Department of Environmental Protection, 311

Prince George's County, Maryland: Water Pollution Line, 301-95-CLEAN

Northern Virginia: Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Northern Division, 703-583-3800; Mark Miller, Pollution Response Coordinator, 703-583-3864,

In Virginia, streams are under state jurisdiction. For hazardous waste or human health issues, call 911. For stormwater drain or pond issues, contact the county agency:
Arlington County, Virginia: Emergency Communications Center, 703-558-2222
Fairfax County, Virginia: Department of Public Works and Environmental Services, Stormwater Planning Division, Irene Haske, 703-324-5821,
Loudoun County, Virginia: Stormwater Management Program,; Complaint Hotline, 703-777-0117; Complaint Form,

Save Water
WaterSense, US Environmental Protection Agency
Wise Water Use Campaign, Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments
See detailed tips at District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority

Prevent Pollution
BayScapes, US Fish and Wildlife Service (landscaping resources)
Washington, DC: RiverSmart, District Department of the Environment (supports installation of green roofs, rain gardens, and rain barrels at residences)
Montgomery County: RainScapes ($2500 rebate for installing a rain garden)
Northern Virginia: Rain Barrel Workshops, Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District,  ($55 to build or $65 to buy)

 Audubon Naturalist Society Programs
Water Quality Monitoring program
Water Quality Monitoring classes