Research: Looking for Aquatic Life
The Ridgewood Basin is a little forgotten gem in the heart of the Brooklyn/Queens complex. Tucked high on a rubble hill left by glaciers, one must work hard to locate an access point just to view it. Once part of a drinking water system that stored water, the pipe that fed it is sealed but the pond persists from ground water. It’s clarity is excellent and dragonflies, amphipods, and other invertebrates abound, as do aquatic birds. At least one large turtle also lives here. But fish are a question mark–accessing its open waters to survey it is nearly impossible, given the dense stand of Phragmites rush that completely rings its shallows for one-hundred feet or more. Because of this obstacle, I speculate that no person has waded or paddled its core for decades, making the Ridgewood Basin one of the wildest places in all of New York City.
John Waldman, Professor Dept of Biology, Queens College CUNY
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