Monitoring the health of our waterways is an essential part of effective stewardship and conservation. WATR teams regularly monitor the tributaries of the Tuckasegee watershed. Join us to protect your watershed!

Report a Pollution Problem

Citizen Scientist Teams

Our nation’s fresh water system is so vast that EPA strongly urges “citizen scientists” to track and report water quality. There is no prior experience needed to be a citizen scientist. Over time, we will look to these members for support of reasonable regulations and effective enforcement, because they are on the front lines and have inside knowledge of the watershed.

Kathy Gray collects a water sample for analysis.

VWIN Monitoring Team

On the 4th Saturday of each month, members of this team collect water samples from 16 sites on creeks and the Tuckasegee main stem. Typically, samples are left at drop points in iced coolers. A volunteer then drives them to Asheville to deliver them to the Environmental Quality Institute lab. Under the direction of Ann Marie Traylor, the samples are analyzed for nutrients, sediment content, turbidity, and other basic parameters. These data provide a good picture of water quality, and they have been critical in obtaining grants. Contact us if you are interested in participating.

Eric Romaniszyn, students examine kicknet capture.

SMIE Macroinvertebrate Sampling Team

WATR holds trainings for members who have a curiosity about aquatic ecology and an eagerness to help characterize our water quality. The types and numbers of aquatic insects in a creek can provide a good indication of the pollution status of that creek. Contact us if you are interested.

Fish sampling in Cullowhee Creek with Bill McLarney.

Fish Sampling Team

We collected fish samples each season to gauge the health of the fish population. Sampling events are “on the job training” and a great experience. No prior training required, just enthusiasm and a willingness to work in the creek! Contact us if you are interested.

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Our Watershed