Title

Snapshot Volunteer Monitoring: A Community Science Success Story

Item Type

Presentation

Location

Elaine Langone, Room 242

Session

Status, Trends and Monitoring II

Start Date

27-10-2018 3:30 PM

End Date

27-10-2018 4:30 PM

Keywords

Conodoguinet Creek, citizen science, volunteer monitoring, resource management

Description

In the spring of 2017, community interest in reviving a “snapshot” model of volunteer monitoring in the Conodoguinet Creek watershed in south-central Pennsylvania initiated an exciting new opportunity for collaboration among diverse partners. The Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM) and the Cumberland County Conservation District partnered with local watershed groups to create the Conodoguinet Watershed Snapshot, a program that collects data on stream health once per season over a year. The Conodoguinet Creek is a 520 mi2 watershed, which drains into the Susquehanna River. There have been several volunteer monitoring initiatives from 1996 to 2006 but no water quality data had been collected for eleven years when community members developed an interest in the current health of the watershed. Within this snapshot model, volunteers test several water quality indicators both in the field and in ALLARM’s laboratory at Dickinson College. Connecting college resources to community science amplified the effectiveness of the program. More than forty community members of all ages were actively engaged in snapshot monitoring in 2017-2018, which included up to 29 sites throughout the watershed. Community follow-up included a series of data interpretation meetings with local watershed groups and the publication of a final report. Positive volunteer feedback from the snapshot fueled a second year and led to the creation of a monthly monitoring program with the Conodoguinet Creek Watershed Association. This presentation will focus on key ingredients of the collaboration and community engagement that make the Conodoguinet Watershed Snapshot successful. Attendees will be able to take home lessons learned about this model of volunteer monitoring to apply in their own work.

Language

eng

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Oct 27th, 3:30 PM Oct 27th, 4:30 PM

Snapshot Volunteer Monitoring: A Community Science Success Story

Elaine Langone, Room 242

In the spring of 2017, community interest in reviving a “snapshot” model of volunteer monitoring in the Conodoguinet Creek watershed in south-central Pennsylvania initiated an exciting new opportunity for collaboration among diverse partners. The Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM) and the Cumberland County Conservation District partnered with local watershed groups to create the Conodoguinet Watershed Snapshot, a program that collects data on stream health once per season over a year. The Conodoguinet Creek is a 520 mi2 watershed, which drains into the Susquehanna River. There have been several volunteer monitoring initiatives from 1996 to 2006 but no water quality data had been collected for eleven years when community members developed an interest in the current health of the watershed. Within this snapshot model, volunteers test several water quality indicators both in the field and in ALLARM’s laboratory at Dickinson College. Connecting college resources to community science amplified the effectiveness of the program. More than forty community members of all ages were actively engaged in snapshot monitoring in 2017-2018, which included up to 29 sites throughout the watershed. Community follow-up included a series of data interpretation meetings with local watershed groups and the publication of a final report. Positive volunteer feedback from the snapshot fueled a second year and led to the creation of a monthly monitoring program with the Conodoguinet Creek Watershed Association. This presentation will focus on key ingredients of the collaboration and community engagement that make the Conodoguinet Watershed Snapshot successful. Attendees will be able to take home lessons learned about this model of volunteer monitoring to apply in their own work.