Category Archives: Water Quality Monitoring

New Volunteer Data is Here!

By: Angela Danovi, Beaver LakeSmart Program Director – Ozarks Water Watch

New data has been released for both the Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program and StreamSmart!  The reports represent over 1500 hours of donated time to volunteer monitoring, valued at more than $25,000 in service!

StreamSmart

Click here to download the 2015 StreamSmart Data Report

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Eighteen sites within the Beaver Lake Watershed were part of our 2015 monitoring report.  Sites were grouped together in chapters by sub-watershed and were listed within each chapter from upstream to downstream.

  • Beaver Reservoir Watershed – 2 sites
  • Headwaters-White River-Lake Sequoyah Subwatershed – 2 sites
  • Middle Fork of the White River Subwatershed – 1 site
  • War Eagle Subwatershed – 9 sites
  • West Fork of the White River Subwatershed – 4 sites

Upstream and downstream comparisons were made for Holman Creek, War Eagle and West Fork. Holman creek is monitored upstream and downstream of the city of Huntsville. Sharp increases in conductivity, total dissolved solids, total nitrogen, and total phosphorus were found when comparing the upstream site (site 307) to the downstream site (site 308) on Holman Creek. ADEQ has identified wastewater treatment as one potential contributor towards lower water quality in Holman Creek.

Data from War Eagle shows an increase in nutrients from the most upstream site (site 107) to the second site (site 301) on the creek at Withrow Springs State Park. Interestingly, Holman Creek flows into War Eagle just upstream of Withrow Springs, which could have an effect on higher nutrient levels found at the Withrow Springs monitoring site. But nutrient levels on War Eagle decrease further downstream at the mill (site 305). The site is the mill is sampled downstream of the dam, which may be one reason for a decrease in nutrient concentration found in War Eagle.

The main stem of the West Fork is monitored just north of Winslow (site 102) and just south of Fayetteville (site 101). There is no consistent trend in nitrogen concentrations and only a slight increase in phosphorus concentrations from upstream to downstream. The site with the highest concentrations of nutrients in the West Fork watershed was at Spout Spring Branch (site 206). Spout Springs is one of the few urban sites being monitored through StreamSmart. The stream flows through a large section of Fayetteville and is vulnerable to decreased water quality from stormwater runoff and other urban water quality impacts.

War Eagle 2016

 

Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program

Click here to download the 2015 Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program Data report

BVLP Front Cover Report Final

2015 was the second year for volunteer monitoring on Beaver Lake. Six sites were monitored this year and listed in the report from upstream to downstream. There was a general trend of increasing secchi depth from the upper sites to the lower sites in the lake. This is an expected outcome because as the water slows down, particulate matter and sediment drops out of the water column and settles at the bottom of the lake, resulting in increased water clarity. Comparing 2014 and 2015 data at the same site reveals slightly lower average secchi readings, slightly higher chlorophyll and phosphorus concentrations, and slightly lower nitrogen concentrations. However, more years of data are required before we will be able to establish a water quality trend.

 

Join a volunteer monitoring team today!

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The success of these programs depends on a team of trained and reliable volunteers. 2016 lake monitoring will begin in late April and extend through the first week of September. Training will be provided in March.

StreamSmart training will be on Saturday, July 16, 2016. The training will be an in-class and field experience and will train volunteers on each component of volunteer monitoring with StreamSmart. If you are interested in volunteering with either the Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program or StreamSmart contact Angela Danovi at 479-295-7717 or email adanovi@ozarkswaterwatch.org

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StreamSmart Quarterly Monitoring

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Courtney Thomas with Beaver Watershed Alliance collects a water sample on Brush Creek during StreamSmart Volunteer Monitoring

One of our main objectives through Beaver LakeSmart is cultivating environmental stewardship while also collecting high quality data through volunteer monitoring of our lakes, creeks, streams, and rivers in the Beaver Lake Watershed. We currently have two volunteer monitoring programs, the Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program and StreamSmart Volunteer Monitoring Program.

Volunteers for StreamSmart monitor their sites quarterly during the first week of the month in February, May, August, and November.  February is when we complete our winter monitoring of the creeks, streams, and rivers that flow into Beaver Lake.  During the first week of February, teams of volunteers will head out to their respective streams to collect water samples, take measurements, and make field observations.  Their water samples are delivered to the water quality lab at the Arkansas Water Resources Center at the University of Arkansas.  There, the samples are analyzed for total nitrogen, total phosphorus, total dissolved solids, total suspended solids, pH, and conductivity.  All of the field and lab data is compiled and posted under each site’s page, found here.

We still have plenty of space for monitoring teams, especially in the central and southern part of the watershed.  So, if you have access to waterway within the Beaver Lake Watershed that you think would be a good candidate for the StreamSmart program or if you are interested in joining a team, you can read more about the program here or contact program director, Angela Danovi, at 479-295-7717.

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by: Angela Danovi – Program Director of Beaver LakeSmart

Welcome to Beaver LakeSmart!

LakeSmart-Logo-GIF-Small-250x243Welcome to Beaver LakeSmart.  We are so excited to launch this new website.  We want to invite you to look around our new website and learn about our program and many of the activities we’ve been doing and services we offer.  One of the biggest assets of our site is the electronically available Beaver LakeSmart self assessment guide for homeowners and residents!  You will find the entire guide at the homeowners education program.  Each chapter of the guide is listed to the left-hand side of the page of the homeowners education page.  Click on the topic you want to learn more about and you can download the specific chapter related to the topic and watch the videos on that topic that were produced by the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service.

The website also features our StreamSmart Volunteer Monitoring Program and our Beaver Lake Volunteer Monitoring Program.  Through these programs we monitor the water quality of Beaver Lake and the watershed. We will be posting our data online, so you can keep up with how the water is doing near you! If you would like to join our volunteer water quality teams, both monitoring programs are still in need of volunteers.  So, please send us a message to get more information!

We are really excited about our blog!  We often have many things we want to share with you from big events like the Annual Secchi Day on Beaver Lake to some of the innovative water quality protection practices like the series of raingardens the city of West Fork has implemented.  This will also be the place where we will highlight big events, share fun stories from the watershed, and provide information on easily adaptable best management practices that you can do to help improve and protect the water quality of Beaver Lake.

When you’re not at our website, we invite you to follow us on our new social media apps at facebook, twitter, google+, or linkedin.  All of our blog updates will be posted to our social media.  You will want to make sure and follow us so you will never miss our latest post!

Once again welcome to Beaver LakeSmart and we hope you will let us know what you think of the site and come back to visit us soon!

Sincerely,

Angela Danovi

Beaver Lakesmart Program Coordinator

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