Adopt-A-Stream is a volunteer-based program under the Nonpoint Source Program in the Water Protection Branch of the Georgia Environmental Protection Division. This program encourages individuals and communities to monitor section of streams through training workshops and help improve your local bodies of water. This established and effective program has been implemented within the city and will continue to curtail the water quality preservation program supported by Griffin. It has also become an incredibly successful teaching tool used by many schools in the Griffin-Spalding School System. Students from Cowan Road Elementary School, Crescent Road Elementary School, Futral Road Elementary School and Griffin High School use the training and techniques of this program to do real world science.
To volunteer and learn more about upcoming workshops, please contact Alexa Robinson at 770-229-6424 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit https://adoptastream.georgia.gov/getting-started.
Spalding County Adopt-A-Stream - @SpaldingCountyAdopt-A-Stream
Getting Started with Adopt-A-Stream
Conducting Watershed Survey, Map Assessment, and Visual Stream Survey (4 hours)
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.
Chemical Monitoring Workshop for Quality Assurance (2.5 hours plus 1.5-hour introduction)
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.
Macroinvertebrate Monitoring Workshop for Quality Assurance
Biological Monitoring (5 hours)
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.
Bacterial Monitoring Workshop for Quality Assurance (2.5 hours plus 1.5-hour introduction)
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.
Visual Stream Habitat Monitoring
Assesses the visual and physical evaluation of stream conditions which can detect critical water pollutants and habitat damage, such as sedimentation, erosion and excessive nutrients. This type of monitoring is done quarterly or once a season and the workshop is included in the Introduction to Adopt-A-Stream Workshop, along with the Watershed Assessment.
The health of your waterbody is directly impacted by land uses and activities. Getting to know your watershed is the first step to understanding your stream, wetland, lake, or coastal water. This assessment is included with the Introduction to Adopt-A-Stream and included with Visual Stream Habitat Assessment. This survey shows you how to map your watershed and conduct a comprehensive survey of the land uses, potential and actual pollution sources, geography and history of your waterbody and its watershed and is done once a year.
Educator’s Guide Workshop (5 hours)
Adopt-A-Stream Educator’s Guide is designed to introduce the Adopt-A-Stream monitoring program to students across Georgia. These activities will bring water quality education to your classroom and spark your students’ interest in protecting our precious water resources. During this workshop, educators will participate in several of these activities and learn how to use them in the classroom. Teachers will then be asked to submit a detailed report on how they use the Adopt-A-Stream Educator’s Guide as an educational tool. This workshop is suitable for formal and non-formal teachers.