Watershed specialist Kim Bonfardine has begun deploying data loggers into watersheds to gather baseline data for the Elk County Monitoring Project.
"At this time, five data loggers are deployed, with the sixth going in-stream [today]," Bonfardine said during Monday night's Elk County Conservation District meeting.
"The plan is to place at least three data loggers in each watershed and monitor for a period of two weeks to gather baseline data and then move the data loggers to another watershed, continuing around the county and then we will start over again and repeat the data in different seasons."
Bonfardine noted that larger watersheds may require more data loggers.
"The schedule may be changed and other adjustments may be made to design this program specific to Elk County," Bonfardine said. "It may change if we find out it's not working well, if two weeks is too soon or too long."
The Conservation District owns 12 data loggers to place freely throughout the county.
Bonfardine will be meeting with Bruce Dickson in the near future to discuss the details of setting up the YSI satellite meters in the streams.
"[Dickson] is very busy but he is trying to get things together to build the housing system for the YSI satellite monitors," Bonfardine said. "They are bigger and they are going to take a little more effort to get them into the streams because you have to cement things down in to make sure they are permanent. I am hoping to have at least two or three of those set up before the bad winter hits and then put the rest in in the spring time when the water goes down where it is safe enough to get in the streams."
Each data logger monitors the conductivity, temperature and flow of the water. The YSI satellite meters will record pH, temperature, conductivity, total dissolved solids and dissolved oxygen.