Citizen Based Stream Monitoring
Dakin Creek dry on October 6, 2012. Eric Godfrey (volunteer monitor) reported it had dried up on September 27, 2012 to Kris Stepenuck (WAV Coordinator).
Eric Godfrey and Kris Stepenuck at Dakin Creek on August 20, 2012. (See comparison photo for October 6, 2012 when stream was dried up. Second time in 22 years this has occurred.)
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Tracking stream flow can provide important information for understanding climate change and non-point source pollution, including for TMDL development and monitoring. Budget reductions have resulted in a loss of USGS stream flow gaging stations, and limit the number of WDNR staff who can monitor stream flow with USGS-grade equipment and methods. Modeling and extrapolation are sometimes used to obtain stream flow information when monitoring data are not available at a site, but both of these methods have limitations. Understanding the relationship between volunteer methods and professional methods will improve credibility of Wisconsins volunteer stream monitoring data. By determining the relationship between the two methods, volunteer-generated data may be used to aid in determination of nutrient loadings, for climate change research, or for other management purposes.