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Long-Term Volunteer Lake Monitoring in the Upper Woonasquatucket Watershed Linda Green URI Watershed Watch 401-874-2905,

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Presentation on theme: "Long-Term Volunteer Lake Monitoring in the Upper Woonasquatucket Watershed Linda Green URI Watershed Watch 401-874-2905,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Long-Term Volunteer Lake Monitoring in the Upper Woonasquatucket Watershed Linda Green URI Watershed Watch ,


3 WATER QUALITY IS ALSO A REFLECTION OF in-water processes: biology, chemistry, physics of the waterbody itself

4 Watershed: The area of land that drains to the outlet of a lake, stream or other waterbody

5 Limnology: Scientific study of freshwater ecosystems lakes, ponds, reservoirs, streams Goal: Improve understanding of the physical, biological, chemical, and geological factors affecting these ecosystems

6 URI Watershed Watch: An Ecological Monitoring Program Ecological Monitoring = Repeated measurements over time to note a condition or track a trend

7 URI Watershed Watch: Essential Ingredients science-based locally driven involve the public educational, not regulatory provide good, useful information stable funding


9 Woonasquatucket Lakes Georgiaville Pond Hawkins Reservoir - 90 Slack’s Reservoir Waterman Lake Woon. Res. – Stump Pond - 353

10 Education / Awareness Assess Impairment Legal & Regulatory Increasing Time - Rigor - QA - Expense $$ The Continuum of Volunteer Monitoring Data Use URIWW has EPA-approved QAPP’s & is a RI Dept of Health certified laboratory

11 We measure: – Secchi Depth – Chlorophyll – Phosphorus & nitrogen – Dissolved oxygen – Bacteria To indicate: – Water clarity – Algae – Nutrient levels – Aquatic health –Safe for recreation

12 Monitoring Equipment & Supplies

13 Monitoring Supplies Secchi Disk and View Tube (not for rivers) Postcards (on-line data entry coming soon!) Deep or Shallow Sampler Sample Bottles Chlorophyll Supplies kits Thermometer Dissolved Oxygen Kit Salinity Kit

14 Three Tiers of Monitoring Weekly - water clarity (lakes and ponds) Biweekly –water temperature –chlorophyll (algae) –dissolved oxygen –salinity

15 Three Tiers of Monitoring Water Collection Days Monthly- rivers, salty sites May, July, Oct – lakes and ponds A suite of water samples collected and brought to WW lab for lab analysis of –Acidity level –nutrients –bacteria

16 The ultimate goal is to ensure that good quality data is collected by satisfied, well trained volunteers and is used!

17 Rainfall Amount Distribution

18 Water  Lakes slow the flow of water  Lake water quality reflects the history of the water Particulate matter Soluble materials

19 Residence Time: Residence Time: Amount of time water spends in the lake between inflow and outflow < 10 days algae flushed out days nutrients collect, algae use nutrients and multiply >100 days amount of algae limited by amount of nutrients

20 Accumulation l Nutrients l Sediment l Organic Material

21 Eutrophication Time

22 Particulates  Runoff from storms  sediments  organic matter

23  Discharge to waterways… nutrients, pesticides, adsorbed to above

24 Bacterial contamination Airborne particulates  dust  pollen

25 Soluble Materials Dissolved plant nutrients, particularly P and N  Agricultural crops  Lawn and garden fertilizers

26 Wastewater discharges

27 Stages of Lake Aging Oligotrophy Clear Water Nutrient Poor Sandy or rocky bottom Inorganic sediments Mesotrophy Average nutrient levels Some organic sediments Eutrophy Nutrient Rich Algal blooms or dense aquatic plant growth Basin filling with organic sediments

28 A Delicate Balance

29 Woonasquatucket Lakes Georgiaville Pond Hawkins Reservoir Slack’s Reservoir Waterman Lake Woonasquatucket Res. – Stump Pond


31 Bacteria Results


33 Georgiaville Pond


35 Dissolved Oxygen  Necessary for fish and aquatic animals  Prevents re-suspension of trapped nutrients  Content controlled by water temperature and sediment biomass

36 Lake Stratification

37 Dissolved Oxygen



40 Alternate Shallow Lake Stable States

41 Hawkins Pond


43 Slack’s Reservoir


45 Waterman Lake


47 Stump Pond (Woon. Res.)

48 Stump Pond

49 The bottom line… All the data is invaluable The data point to water quality as stable or slightly improving This is GREAT NEWS!

50 Thank You!

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