2019 Volunteer Water Monitoring Conference

Connecticut DEEP 4/5/2019

Celebrating 20 Years of Volunteer Water Monitoring in CT

The 2019 Volunteer Water Monitoring Conference was held on April 5, 2019 at Three Rivers Community College in Norwich, CT.  The conference was the second such conference to be organized by the CT DEEP in collaboration with partners to celebrate volunteer water monitoring in Connecticut.  The 2019 theme, “Many Waters, One State: Uniting Connecticut’s Lake, River, Wetland & Long Island Sound Citizen Science Communities,” sought to celebrate the diverse community of volunteer water monitors across the state.    

Conference Summary

The conference was the largest statewide volunteer water monitoring conference held in Connecticut to-date.  Nearly 200 individuals representing individual volunteers (citizen scientists), watershed group leaders, municipal commissioners, college and university professors, state and federal scientists, students, and representatives from the environmental consulting industry registered to attend.  In total, more than 100 volunteer monitoring groups were represented – more than twice as many as were represented at our 2014 conference!

Conference Schedule

Oral Presentations and Workshops

Presentations are listed in order of session/track below.  Refer to the links above for speaker information and presentation abstracts.  Note that the titles below reflect actual presentation titles; titles in the materials above reflect abstract submissions.  Please email the Volunteer Water Monitoring Program Coordinator to request a copy of a presentation listed below.

Suggested Citation Format: [Last Name and Initials of First Name]. (2019, April). [Presentation title]. Presented at the CT Volunteer Water Monitoring Conference, Norwich, CT.

Presentation and Workshop Abstracts

A1. Diatoms as Biological Indicators of Water Quality and an Update on Nuisance Stalk Forming Species 

A2. Invasive Investigator Program: Launch Monitors Preventing the Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species

A3. Unified Stream Assessment – Rapid Assessment to Identify Stream Impacts

A4. RBV Fieldwork and Mentoring Opportunity for Three Rivers Community College Students  

A5. Forging a Public – Private Partnership: Water Monitoring Before, During, and After  the Exide Environmental Remediation Project

A6. 30 Years of Change in Long Island Sound Fish and Water Quality 

A7. Managing a Volunteer Lake Monitoring Group

A8. The Cyanobacteria Monitoring Collaborative: An Approach to Educating, Monitoring, and Managing Harmful Cyanobacteria

A9. Turning Volunteer Data into Action!  

B1. The Role of Vegetation in Sequestration of E. coli in the Scantic River (CT)

B2. Monitoring Aquatic Invasive Plants in the Connecticut River Estuary

B3. We have Data, Now What Do We Do with It? Managing and Sharing Your Stream Temperature Monitoring Data

B4. Leveraging Your Water Quality Data with the Natural Resources Conservation Academy

B5. IWRM 2.1: The Revenge of the Plans

B6. Connecticut’s Response to the Management of Pathogenic Vibrio parahaemolyticus in Shellfish

B7. Alexander Lake: Volunteer Monitoring

B8. bloomWatch! Monitoring Cyanobacteria Blooms with a Smartphone

B9. Working “Hand-in-Hand” with Municipalities to Identify and Correct Pollutants Impacting Local Waterways – A Developmental Partnership Approach

C1. Monitoring Water Quality to Assess Impacts of a Small-Scale Hydromodification in the North Branch Park River

C2. Beyond Sampling for Water Quality and Paddling with a Purpose

C3. Using Citizen Science for Large-Scale River Monitoring in Fairfield County 

C4. Water Monitoring as Part of an Integrated Middle School Science Curriculum

C5. Results of Two Long-Term Water Temperature Monitoring Efforts in the Niantic River Watershed

C6. Coastal Acidification: Establishing Water Monitoring Networks  

C7. Lake Waramaug Task Force: How We Got the Lake From Green to Clean

C8. Cyanobacteria Monitoring Pilot Project: Roseland Lake (Woodstock, CT)

C9. How Water Quality Data can be used to Effectuate Change 

D10. Monitoring to Influence and Support Municipal Decision Making: How Can (and Can’t) Towns Use Volunteer Data?  (Panel Discussion) 

D11. Invasive Aquatic Plants in Connecticut 

D12. Make it a Festival! Project WET   

D13. Planning for Flood-Resilient and Fish-Friendly Road-Stream Crossings in the Housatonic River Watershed

D14. Natural Resource Maps on the CT ECO Website

D15. Interstate Environmental Commission Coordinated Volunteer Pathogen Monitoring Program          

D16. Using Smartphone Apps to Inform Stakeholders of Lake Management Issues  

D17. Monitoring Streamflow with Trail Cameras  

E12. Lessons Learned from More Than thirty Years of Volunteer Monitoring  

E13. Opportunities for Students in Watershed-Level Investigations and Partnerships

E14.  Many Projects, One App: Simplifying Your Citizen Science Data Collection with EpiCollect 5

E15. Unified Approach to Water Quality Monitoring Long Island Sound Embayments

E16. Citizen-Led Environmental Observatory (CLEO): A Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program Template

E17. Vernal Pool Ecology & Monitoring

E18. Freshwater Plankton Collection, Evaluation and Data Recording

F15. Protecting and Improving Water Quality in Norwalk Harbor

Student Posters

Posters are listed in order presenter name, alphabetical by first author’s last name. Note that the titles below reflect actual presentation titles; titles in the materials above reflect abstract submissions.  Please email the Volunteer Water Monitoring Program Coordinator to request a copy of a poster listed below.

Suggested Citation Format: [Last Name and Initials of First Name]. (2019, April). [Poster title]. Poster session presented at the CT Volunteer Water Monitoring Conference, Norwich, CT.

Student Poster Abstracts

Exploring Volunteer Accuracy in the RBV Program – Grace Berthiaume, Portland High School

Long-term water quality monitoring at Long Wharf, New Haven (2012-2019) -Cassandra Bhageloo, Mallery Breban, & Renee Chabot, Southern Connecticut State University    

Oyster growth and survival on an artificial reef in New Haven Harbor – Chloe Chmelar, The Sound School (New Haven)     

Importance of citizen science on osprey populations – Melina Giantomidis, University of New Haven    

Stormwater runoff in Gorham’s Pond – Isabelle Hole, Darien High School    

CFL volunteer secchi disk monitoring program – Hillary Kenyon, University of Massachusetts    

Mobile phone based citizen science cyanobacteria monitoring – David Lu, Brown University & Annie Lu, Harvard University      

Mercury accumulation in urban park ponds: Has urbanization changed would-be wildlife habitats into ecological traps? – Shane McLaughlin, Trinity College    

Water quality monitoring at Batterson Park Pond – Alexander Merinov, Avon High School  

Elements of the Eightmile River watershed area that create healthy habitats for forest birds – Kelly Morgan & Lorenzo Enderle, Three Rivers Community College   

The effect of nitrogen on the carbon utilization of microbial communities in different types of urban ponds – Meg Shah, Glastonbury High School   

How does water chemistry vary spatially in the Congamond Lake System? – Brooke Tillotson, Suffield High School   

Escherichia coli and total coliform concentrations around a sanitary sewer overflow in Trout Brook in West Hartford, CT – Lexi Zanger & Charlotte Robbins, Trinity College

2019 Conference Planning Committee Members

The following individuals dedicated their time, energy and expertise to insure the 2019 Volunteer Water Monitoring Conference was a success:

  • Diba Khan-Bureau, Three Rivers Community College, Environmental Engineering Technology Program (*Conference Host)
  • Meghan Lally, CT DEEP Water Monitoring Group (*Conference Co-Chair)
  • Katie O’Brien-Clayton, CT DEEP Water Monitoring Group (*Conference Co-Chair)
  • Rebekah White, Friends of the Lake and Connecticut Federation of Lakes
  • Jane Brawerman, CT River Coastal Conservation District
  • Sarah Coccaro, Town of Greenwich Conservation Commission
  • Sarah Crosby, Harbor Watch
  • Tom Fahsbender, Washington Montessori School
  • Mike Jastremski, Housatonic Valley Association
  • Alisa Phillips-Griggs, Farmington River Watershed Association
  • Fran Pijar, Clean Up Sound and Harbor (CUSH)
  • Paul Shafer, Candlewood Valley Trout Unlimited
  • Peter Van Dine, Friends of Bolton Lakes and Bolton Conservation Commission
  • Pat Young, Salmon River Watershed Partnership and  Eightmile River Wild & Scenic Watershed

For More Information Contact:

Meghan Lally
Volunteer Water Monitoring Program Coordinator
CT DEEP Water Monitoring Program
79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106
(860) 424-3061