Students learn how to determine whether the stream is a suitable habitat for the baby trout as part of the district’s TroutKids Program. Photos and video by Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

Peter Rush, an environmental scientist from the Portland Water District, lowers a probe into Trout Brook in South Portland on Thursday with the help of fifth-graders Valya Jacoby-Roberts, left, Chloe Harbaugh and Eleanor Donahue. The students helped perform water quality tests and macroinvertebrate sampling, and conducted shoreline assessments to ensure the new habitat is healthy for the trout.

Fifth-grader Chloe Harbaugh releases brook trout fry into Trout Brook. The brook has been declared an impaired stream, but a small population of brook trout have been observed living there. As part of the project the students studied watersheds, the water cycle, the trout life cycle, and related environmental topics such as stormwater runoff.