Thursday, April 17, 2008

I Went Out To See The Flint River, And More Bifax PCR

I went out yesterday to look at a stretch of the Flint River to put together a quote for a faunal survey. The local water treatment system needs more outfalls, since the suburbs have overrun former farm land. I don't approve, really, but I guess it beats people not having sewage treatment(!). The river was high and fast, with a good 15 knot current. It would not have been a good day either to seine fish, or to dive for mussels. It was still a beautiful day, on what is still a largely unspoiled river, and for "lunch" I got to 4-wheel around pastures and fields to get to the site. The only listed fishes in the river by Fish & Wildlife standards are the slackwater darter and the snail darter, both Threatened. But the slackwater is found only much further upstream, and the snail has never been collected from the Flint although it has been found in the Paint Rock just to the east. We'll see...

James & Andrew started another PCR attempt yesterday with DNA samples from stippled studfish from Hillabee Creek in Tallapoosa County and Cornhouse Creek in Randolph County. They used the optimal thermocycler program (so I think). They'll run a gel tomorrow and see if we have more successful product for sequencing. And, I'll finally sit down with Terence from Procurement on Monday to get my grant account activated. Money doesn't talk, it swears.


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