WATERSHED WATCH IN KENTUCKY
Explore. Connect. Protect.
Explore - Learn more about your chosen waterway through direct experience.
Connect - Partner with others to better understand the waterway's restoration and protection needs.
Protect - Pursue actions that help improve water quality.
Watershed Watch in Kentucky is the statewide umbrella organization that supports Watershed Watch activities in the 7 major river basins in Kentucky. Each of these basins has its individual, regionally coordinated Watershed Watch sampling organizations. The basin organizations function like "chapters" of WWKY, with WWKY providing guidance and funding support to each basin organization and their volunteers. Please visit your basin of interest below for specific information about their training opportunities, sampling dates, and other events and activities.
WHO WE ARE
Mission - We support water quality monitoring that informs, connects, and empowers volunteers and their communities for the improvement and protection of Kentucky's water resources.
Watershed Watch efforts are intended to support attainment of the goals of the federal Clean Water Act.
Volunteers - Our statewide nonprofit organization includes hundreds of volunteers who live across Kentucky and give their time to better understand the water quality of our streams, rivers and lakes.
Board of Directors - An organizing board of representatives from each of the affiliate basin organizations and founding entities meets on a quarterly basis. The board helps oversee the goals, policies, direction and general activities of the organization and provides financial and technical support to the individual basin programs.
WWKY Partnerships - We are grateful for support from the following partners.
WHAT WE DO
Monitoring - Volunteers can choose a site to monitor or request assistance with finding an ideal location. Stream and river sites can be sampled through our Core Sampling Program, and lakes can be sampling through our Lake Monitoring Program.
Training - We provide free online and in-person training workshops, typically in the spring, to teach new samplers and recertify existing samplers.
Equipment - We loan test kits to trained volunteers for their use to test water quality at their chosen sampling location (pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, conductivity, and Secchi depth in lakes).
Testing - Volunteers use test kits for field chemistry analysis and collect water samples for lab analysis of bacteria (E. coli) and other water quality indicators. Sampling typically occurs three times a year, in May, July, and September. Stream habitat and biology are also evaluated in May or June, if desired.
Laboratory Analysis - Water samples are delivered to certified professional labs for bacteria and other analyses. These results are combined with the field chemistry results and added to an online data portal.
Local Water Quality Projects - We encourage samplers to use their knowledge and sampling results to promote local projects that help improve and protect the quality of water in their chosen stream, river or lake.
Water Education - We attend events and assist with classroom activities to promote a better general understanding of water resources and WWKY’s efforts to improve them. We also partner with Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service and others to support a youth Stream Team Program.
Social Activities - We help organize various water-related activities for fun and added learning opportunities throughout the year.
WHERE WE WORK
Kentucky's River Basins - Water in Kentucky drains into 8 major river basins. To offer more direct, regional support within these basins, WWKY operates through seven affiliated basin organizations (Tradewater and Green River Basins are combined).
Please visit your basin of interest for specific information about the region’s training opportunities, sampling dates, and other events and activities. (Basin chapters are linked to their associated websites, if available.)