The Illinois RiverWatch Network is offering Illinois residents the chance to train to become citizen scientists and join a network of more than 750 volunteers throughout the state who monitor water quality of Illinois streams.
RiverWatch is a statewide partnership of organizations and individuals working to protect Illinois streams and waterways. It was established in 1995 as a sub-program of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources' Eco Watch Network. It's "Citizen Scientists" examine indicators like stream habitats and diversity of macroinvertebrate species to provide reliable water quality data that can be used by scientists to determine how the conditions of streams are changing.
Today, RiverWatch is a program of the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center, a partnership between Lewis and Clark Community College, the University of Illinois and the Illinois Natural History Survey.
Since its founding in 1995, more than 1,700 individuals have received certification through RiverWatch and 750 stream sites have been established for annual water quality sampling.
A series of volunteer training workshops will be held throughout the state this spring. The workshops will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and combine both lecture/classroom time with field training in a local stream.
Registration is $50 per person and must be paid in advance of the workshop.
The metro-east workshop is in Haskell Hall, Room 101 at Lewis and Clark Community College, 5800 Godfrey Road, Godfrey.
Anybody can become a volunteer, but registrants under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
To register for a workshop, contact Keener at (618) 468-2782 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about RiverWatch, visit www.ngrrec.org/riverwatch.
Hunter safety class
An Illinois Hunter Safety Class will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. March 20 and from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Caseyville Moose Lodge No. 4, 8550 Bunkum Road in Caseyville.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources will provide the class and manuals free. Each participant should bring a pencil and a notepad. Attendance both days is mandatory, and those under 12 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Food will be available for purchase both days.
To register, call the Caseyville Village Hall at 344-1234, extension 220 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Kids ages 8 and up are invited to participate in the third annual shed hunt at the Columbia Bottom Conservation Area, 801 Strodtman Road in St. Louis.
They will learn what deer antlers are, how they grow and how they are used. Dress for the weather and wear good walking shoes. Information: 314-877-6014.