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North Attleborough High School, North Attleborough, Massachusetts


Donna Cochrane


Elizabeth Clark, Peter Forte, Jessica Lagasse, Amanda Matte, Ryan Morrissey, David Zaniboni


The purpose of our study was to make certain that Abbott Run met the Massachusetts water quality standards of a Class A river. We are concerned that the Abbott Run remains a Class A river because it is the source of the drinking water for Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

Abbott Run is located in the western section of North Attleboro within the Blackstone River Watershed. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the west, Plainville to the north and Attleboro to the south. The watershed section in North Attleboro is approximately four square miles.

Land use is predominately single-family, residential except for the Interstate 295 right of way segment. Major transportation facilities include Interstate 295 and Route 120. The section of the river that runs through North Attleboro passes through Chemawa Golf Course, an 18-hole course, on its way to Rhode Island.

The river was studied at two different sites about a half-mile from each other on October 31, 2007. The first site was just off Cushman Road, downstream from the second site at Shady Pines. For the first year of the study the class went to Hunt’s Bridge, for a second site, in October 2005. For the next two years though, the class went to Shady Pines in October 2006 and 2007. The river passed through the golf course between the two sites.

To make sure that Abbott Run met the Massachusetts Class A water standards, the river was tested for pH, dissolved oxygen, specific conductivity, and temperature. We also collected benthic macro-invertebrates at both sites. Our class kept a record of the amount of precipitation in the week preceding our study of the river, and depth, and flow was determined.

The values for nearly everything that we tested were similar at both sites and met the Class A standards. Last year, the pH at Shady Pines was above the standard, but, this year it met the Class A standards.

Site A had an MGBI of 3.4. This according to the Hilsenhoff Biotic Index is an “excellent” reading meaning that there is no apparent organic pollution. Site B had an MGBI of 3.8, which is a “very good” reading on the Hilsenhoff Biotic Index. This means that Site B had slight organic pollution.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


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