1. A sampling setup, to track the concentration of something in the water. It will be left there for a while, then collected.

  2. Likely not concentration, but growth rate of biofilm. The white circles are a porous material that allows growth of biofilm on top while a loaded agar beneath diffuses varying amounts of nutrients as treatments to the top layer.

  3. I think your right. I'm guessing its to test for toxic metal run off from prior mining activity up stream. If you look carefully at the set of 3 bolts that are repeated 2x in each block they look like they are made of 3 different metals and one is far more corroded than the other 2. The mining operations left lots of arsenic, cadmium, chromium and mercury. They wouldn't be looking for mercury that way but the other metals do react to metals. If I'm right the corrosion over a specific time period should give you a good idea on the amount of pollution in the stream.

  4. This. I have a background in geology. My guess is that it isn't necessarily the corrosiveness of the water but the average rate of erosion on boulders in the stream flow.

  5. I’m guessing it is some kind of academic experiment. I would look for a sign or something. Looks too obvious to be trying to hide anything.

  6. Scientist here. These are usually set up by USGS to measure different physical and chemical properties of streams and rivers. Some they keep indefinitely if areas are more remote and some and temporary to get readings like flow and discharge rate. You can actually find all locations of these through the USGS website.

  7. The exposed substrate appear to be porous, leading me to think these are nutrient diffusing substrate (NDS) cups. While incubated in the streambed, biofilm grow while exposed to varying levels of nutrient treatments loaded beneath the white substrate. The rocks between the two boxes may be a sort of control group from recently cleaned rocks found in the stream.

  8. I believe this is an in stream incubator for trout/salmon eggs. I have seen them used as sediment traps for stream assessments also.

  9. I also thought it was a habitat for newborn fish. They need crevasses and such to hide from predators, and I've seen such things before dropped by people just to help breed them.

  10. Could be for microscopic gold particles. I heard a story years ago than someone found a lost Canadian Gold coin in a Canadian river, and upon inspection, found that it actually was heavier than when it was minted. The theory is that gold bonds to gold, microscopically, and that could be another way nuggets are formed.

  11. They could be testing different types of concrete to see which ones hold up in that particular area. Acidity, temperature, algae, crustaceans, etc. all play a role. That’s a wild guess as I’m not even remotely an expert.

  12. That’s the one thing I miss since moving to Ontario… the crystal clear water it’s freezing cold but beautiful.

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