Adopt-A-Stream is Georgia's volunteer water quality monitoring program. To get involved, see our list of workshops. You can register for one of our prescheduled programs, or call (706) 507-8550 to book your group of 6+ people for private training.
The Oxbow Meadows Adopt-A-Stream program is made possible in part by a grant from the F. Allen and Louise K. Turner Foundation.
Registration is free!
During this program, citizen scientists will recieve the tools and training nessessary to monitor amphibians. An ecologist with the Department of Natural Resources will lead an indoor presentation highlighting frogs and salamanders found in our streams and wetlands. Then participants will be led along Oxbow's wetland trail, identifying calling frogs and examining any that are found. Participants will receive a manual with monitoring protocol and a color ID key.
The Bacterial Monitoring Workshop will teach volunteers how to monitor E. coli levels in their streams. E. coli is an indicator organism that is often used to assess the water quality. Monitoring levels of E. coli can help identify possible sources of pollution. This workshop will focus on proper collection of a water sample, transfer of sample onto plates that will be incubated, and proper interpretation of results. Volunteers who successfully perform the bacterial monitoring and pass the written test with a score of 90% or better will be considered a QA/QC volunteer for one year.
Learn how to sample the biological aspects of a stream. The macroinvertebrates (insects, mollusks, & crustaceans) found in a stream are excellent indicators of the condition of both water quality and habitat. This workshop will focus on collection techniques for either rocky or muddy bottom streams and macroinvertebrate identification. A quality assurance test is available at the end of the workshop for those who wish to test their skills. Volunteers who identify the macroinvertebrates with 90% accuracy and pass the written test with a score of 80% or better will be considered a QA/QC volunteer for one year.
The Chemical Monitoring workshop is designed to teach volunteers about basic stream water chemistry and how to conduct the chemical tests using hand-held field equipment. The basic set of tests that volunteers are asked to conduct includes dissolved oxygen, conductivity, pH, and temperature. Advanced tests may include alkalinity, phosphate and nitrate-nitrogen. Volunteers are given a field test and written test to assess their ability to collect accurate and precise data. Volunteers who collect data within 10% accuracy and pass the written test with a score of 80% or better will be considered a QA/QC volunteer for one year.
Help-the-Hooch is Columbus' annual Rivers Alive cleanup. Held in October of each year, over 2000 citizens get outside, get active, and help make a difference in our watershed.
This workshop is based on the manual Getting To Know Your Watershed . Volunteers learn about the process of registering the stream, wetland or lake that they will monitor. Then volunteers learn how to use maps to delineate and assess their watershed. Land use and impervious surface is discussed as it pertains to the watershed survey data forms. The second half of the workshop is spent at a stream conducting the visual stream survey and learning how to do a stream cross-section and calculate flow. This workshop is not required but is highly recommended.
To learn more about Georgia's Adopt-A-Stream program click here.
©2009 Columbus State University
Last Updated: 5/7/13