Water quality survey training classes at WKCTC and Murray State

The Four Rivers Watershed Watch Project is looking for people who’re interested in helping with quality surveys on streams, rivers and lakes in the region.

A volunteer network, the Four Rivers Watershed Watch collects water quality samples throughout the Four Rivers region to be analyzed for parameters such as pathogens, nutrients and pesticides.

Four Rivers Basin Coordinator Maggie Morgan says there is no cost to participate in the program, which gives citizens the training needed to scientifically explore their own stream quality. All materials required for the study will be provided to volunteers

The program begins its 15th year of promoting and educating communities in the region — including Kentucky counties Ballard, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Christian, Crittenden, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Livingston, Logan, Lyon, Marshall, McCracken, Simpson, Trigg, and Todd and Tennessee counties Montgomery and Robertson — on good water quality management.

The Four Rivers Watershed Watch says the data collected in stream quality surveys will be used to help develop plans to improve streams for drinking water supply, fishing, swimming, and wildlife habitat.

Project volunteers will be asked to attend two free training workshops — Phase I and Phase II — and they’ll be trained in conducting biological and chemical tests on water quality. They’ll help collect samples for laboratory analysis. No previous skills are required to participate.

In Phase I training sessions, participants will be introduced to the program, learn grab sampling techniques, and water chemistry techniques. Phase II training sessions will focus on how to conduct biology and habitat assessments. The project asks that volunteers attend one one of each session.

April sessions will be held in Waller Hall of West Kentucky Community and Technical College in Paducah. Phase I training will be held on 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. April 18, and Phase II training will be held from, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on April 26.

June session will be held at Hancock Biological Station on Kentucky Lake at Murray State University. Phase I training will be held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on June 13, and Phase II training will be held from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on June 13.

If you’re interested in participating in the project, you can contact Maggie Morgan, at 270-559-4422 or via email at maggie.morgan@jpf.org. You can register online at the project web page.

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