WATER QUALITY MONITORING ON SMITH RIVER

January 9, 2014

WATER QUALITY MONITORING ON SMITH RIVER

DRBA volunteers hit the field in January to launch the Smith River tributaries water quality monitoring project. Training was held in November of 2013 with James Beckly from the Department of Environmental Quality and in January the first samples samples were taken from 5 selected sites in Henry County. Volunteer teams are assigned to a site that is monitored once per month with sample collection from the Smith River and the selected tributary.

We are using the ColQuant Easygel method for determining the presence of E. coli and other coliforms. Once we compile the data, any trouble spots identified will be further investigated with additional testing sites.

The Coliscan Easygel method is an simple and accepted method allowing anyone to do effective testing without expensive equipment. Samples are brought to the DRBA Henry County office and prepared. After an incubation period, bacterial colonies are identified and calculated. The data collected will be shared with DEQ and Henry County PSA. Additional sites will be added as needed and we will add more basin rivers as volunteers and funding becomes available. The next testing sites will be on the North and South Mayo as part of the Mayo River TMDL Implementation project.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact bwilliams@danriver.org.