Members of the public are invited to be part of an annual project to test the quality of water at three swimming areas on the Pemaquid Peninsula: at Biscay Beach, at the swimming hole by the dam in Bristol Mills, and at Pemaquid Beach. This data collection and tracking helps keep an eye on water quality and makes swimmers feel confident and comfortable about the area beaches. Water-quality tester training will take place on Thursday, May 25, from 10 a.m. to noon at Pemaquid Beach Park, rain or shine. No experience is necessary.
This water-quality monitoring project is a partnership between Pemaquid Watershed Association and the Maine Healthy Beaches Program. Preregistration is required; contact PWA at 563-2196 or firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, May 19.
At this free training, a Maine Healthy Beaches Program specialist will teach participants how to collect water samples and other environmental data such as salinity, water and air temperature, and field observations. The training is mandatory to become a water-quality sampler. The procedures are simple to learn and the handheld equipment is easy to use. Training will require participants to wade about three feet into water to demonstrate sampling ability. Participants should be prepared for the possibility of getting wet and are encouraged to bring waders. The trainer will have extra waders to borrow, if necessary. Those who complete the training will be qualified to sign up for dates to conduct water-quality monitoring this summer.
Sampling is scheduled on Tuesday mornings from Memorial Day to Labor Day and takes approximately one hour. Beach testing dates are usually filled in quickly but the freshwater testing schedule often needs more volunteers.
The Maine Healthy Beaches Program is a statewide effort to monitor water quality and protect public health at Maine’s coastal beaches. Since 1966, Pemaquid Watershed Association has been a member-supported, volunteer-driven nonprofit land trust. PWA’s mission is to conserve the natural resources of the Pemaquid Peninsula through land and water stewardship and education. For more information, call 563-2196 or go to pemaquidwatershed.org.