Citizen based stream monitoring support for Milwaukee Riverkeeper's expanding program


The Water Action Volunteers Program supports citizens in monitoring or collecting water quality data to be used by the DNR in making management decisions. Program goals include collecting high quality data that can be used for management decisions, building relationships between DNR staff and citizen monitors, and assessing areas in need of additional monitoring, restoration and/or protection. Ultimately, volunteer participation in this project aids DNR staff by increasing stream monitoring capabilities. Communities and the DNR can use this water quality information to make decisions that affect the management of streams throughout Wisconsin.


Data collected by Water Action Volunteers can be used by DNR staff as screening tools. The process of data collection helps Wisconsin citizenry enhance their understanding of data collection and in many cases, move to more sophisticated data collection work including biological and additional physical site data..


We would like to purchase 2 sets of level 2 monitoring equipment and 15 thermisters. Data summary information can be found at:

Study Design

The Level 2 stream monitoring sampling plan is consistent with statewide baseline monitoring guidelines laid out in the DNR’s Water Resources Monitoring Strategy for Wisconsin. • DNR or county staff recommends sites that could be useful to have monitored based on needs to acquire status or trends information, or other types of monitoring that is priority. • Volunteers are asked to monitor, at least, from May through September • Volunteers choose primary (P) and secondary (S) sampling dates in advance and note on their data sheets on which of those dates they monitored. • Volunteers are asked to sample on the primary date unless there are safety concerns about being at the stream site (e.g., tornado, lightning, dangerously high flows) or a family emergency. • The goal is to monitor at the same time each month, preferably 30 days apart from the last monitoring visit. • Volunteers are instructed to enter data by the end of each month. Parameters Measured: • Dissolved oxygen (concentration) • Dissolved oxygen (saturation) • Transparency • Temperature (instantaneous and continuous measurements) • pH.

Related Reports

Run Project Summary Report
View Umbrella-Projects
View Related-Projects

Citizen Based Stream Monitoring
Volunteer Monitoring
Reports and Documents
Milwaukee Riverkeepers Link
Activities & Recommendations
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
We are interested in using both general and site-specific data collected by Ciitizen based stream monitors to evaluate trends throughout the Milwaukee River Basin. Milwaukee Riverkeeper is expanding into the upper watersheds of the basin and needs equipment to lend groups of monitors to share.