Below the Surface

The North Branch River

Learn more about the north branch, and how to keep our rivers and streams healthy.

The "Live Stream"

Watch the NBNC "Live Stream," our live camera on the 125-gallon lobby aquarium featuring fish and invertebrates of the North Branch.

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Underwater Insects

Did you know that some insects (awahôdo) spend most of their lives underwater (alômbagw)? Many aquatic invertebrates are actually the larval stage of flying insects. These tiny creatures spend months or even years underwater before transforming into winged adults that live only a few days or weeks. Mayfly, stonefly, and caddisfly larvae all live in this stretch of the river, hiding out between riverbed stones. They need clean, cool, oxygen rich water to thrive, so their presence is a sign of a healthy river.

Awahôdo literally means “a wild spirit” in Abenaki

A Miniature Scavenger Hunt

There is so much small life around us that we often overlook. Head down to Pebble Beach, pick a small area, zoom in close to the ground, and see what tiny wonders you can find. In spring and summer, turn over rocks in the shallow water and search for aquatic invertebrates, or look for their shed exoskeletons on plant stems near the water’s edge. In fall or winter, choose a small area of the shore and see how many different insects, seeds, and leaves you can find on the ground or on top of the snow. Can you tell which tree each seed or leaf came from?

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Coming Soon

North Branch Nature Center

713 Elm Street
Montpelier, Vermont 05602
(802) 229-6206

Hours: Center Open Monday-Friday 9-4
Trails Open 24/7