Kids Water Page

What's In Our Water?

There is a whole world of life in rivers and lakes. Some of the tiny animals living in the water are benthic, meaning they live in the bottom of the waterbody. Some are macroinvertebrates because they are large and easy to see (macro) and because they have no backbone (invertebrate). The most common of these creatures include insects, clams, snails, crayfish, and worms. Some live their whole lives in the water, and others leave the water as adults to feed and reproduce.
Macroinvertebrates are important as food to all the creatures living in the water. Some are considered by scientists to be indicator species and are a way of telling whether or not a river or lake is polluted. In rivers, macroinvertebrates live attached to rocks and plants where there is fast-flowing water. They are good indicators of water quality because they do not move around and are easy to collect. The moving water gives them food and oxygen. If the water is polluted, there is less food and oxygen for the aquatic macroinvertebrates. If the water has pollutant-intolerant macroinvertebrate species in it, that is a good indication that the water is clean and of high quality. If there are mostly pollutant-tolerant macroinvertebrates in the water, there is a chance that the water is polluted and only those types of species can survive.

Water Facts

  • There is the same amount of water on Earth as there was when the Earth was formed.
  • The water from your faucet could contain molecules that dinosaurs drank.
  • Water is composed of two elements, Hydrogen and Oxygen. 2 Hydrogen + 1 Oxygen = H2O.
  • Nearly 97% of the world's water is salty or otherwise undrinkable. Another 2% is locked in ice caps and glaciers.
  • That leaves just 1% for all of humanity's needs — all its agricultural, residential, manufacturing, community, and personal needs.
  • Water regulates the Earth's temperature. It also regulates the temperature of the human body, carries nutrients and oxygen to cells, cushions joints, protects organs and tissues, and removes wastes.
  • 75% of the human brain is water and 75% of a living tree is water.
  • A person can live about a month without food, but only about a week without water.
  • Water is part of a deeply interconnected system. What we pour on the ground ends up in our water, and what we spew into the sky ends up in our water.
  • The average total home water use for each person in the U.S. is about 50 gallons a day.
  • The average cost for water supplied to a home in the U.S. is about $2.00 for 1,000 gallons, which equals about 5 gallons for a penny.
  • Water expands by 9% when it freezes. Frozen water (ice) is lighter than water, which is why ice floats in water.

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