Friends of Blackwater is combining a grant from The North Face® and another from the WV Department of Environmental Protection to install a series of automated water quality monitors with help from students and volunteers.
Automated monitoring systems have significant advantages over more traditional sampling methods. These systems combine one or more sensors, a data recorder – commonly referred to as a datalogger – and, when possible, a cellular or radio transmitter to remotely collect water quality on a near continuous basis. The main issue with these systems has been cost with complicated systems costing upwards of $10K per site… until recently that is.
For now, we’ll be connecting a CDT (conductivity, depth, temperature) sensor to each Mayfly and are looking into the possibility of adding a pH sensor as well. These systems will be used to monitor Beaver Creek and the North Fork of the Blackwater River, as well as our restoration projects as we build and design them.
Friends of Blackwater will be partnering with local high school and college groups over the spring to program and construct the first set of monitoring stations for deployment this summer. If you are interested in learning more or helping install the stations over the summer months, contact our project manager at firstname.lastname@example.org