Volunteers Gather San Dieguito Watershed Data


Photo credit Tony Cagala

Once again, our dedicated volunteers have collected water quality data on August 20. In our efforts to help others understand the data we collect, we going to explore indepth the San Dieguito Watershed in Del Mar and Solana Beach area.

Overall, we’ve found that relative to the rest of San Diego’s watersheds, San Dieguito Watershed is in relatively good condition. The watershed shows some problems typical of urbanization, such as slightly elevated concentrations of some nutrients. But this is expected because of irrigation of land or overwatering of lawns. Because our sites are downstream of agricultural land and golf courses, this could explain the nutrient levels being a little elevated. These levels are only slightly elevated and mostly do not exceed the standards set in the San Diego region basin plan.


Photo credit Tony Cagala

One particularly interesting data point for this month is that one site (on the Del Dios Highway next to the fruit stand) had low levels of dissolved oxygen. The dissolved oxygen levels were 4.60 mg/L and the basin plan standard is at least 5.0 mg/l. This low level of oxygen in the water can stress aquatic organisms. On a good note, we’ve found low levels of fecal indicator bacteria.

In comparison to other watersheds in San Diego, San Dieguito Watershed is in good shape. We want to keep it that way by monitoring the sites and keeping our waste at a minimum. If you would like to be a part of it, sign up to be a volunteer for the September Water Quality Monitoring and training. No need to be a chemist to participate, bring your fun and learning sides together to explore your community and meet new friends.

How can we keep our watersheds healthy? Share your thoughts!


Photo credit Tony Cagala