Secchi (Transparency) Data Forms & Procedures

Secchi (Transparency) Water Quality Monitor Data Forms & Procedures

Water quality monitors receive training to become certified and follow strict protocols, ensuring the quality and high value of the data they collect. Below are instructions and data forms used by water quality monitors.

Each spring as a volunteer you receive a packet with new Secchi data forms, mailing instructions and personalized information, including your Secchi Simulator login.

Instructions for Secchi Monitoring

Instructions for measuring Secchi Disk Transparency (Web page)

PDF Document
Secchi Inst

Please Note: If your Secchi reading is less than 2.5m we would like to know. Call it in to VLMP at 207-783-7733 or vlmp@mainevlmp.org. Please include your name, lake and date of the reading.

Instructions for Total Phosphorus Sampling

The Sawyer Lab in Orono is no longer doing phosphorus testing in conjunction with the VLMP.  The HETL lab in Augusta is doing phosphorus testing for volunteers; please see PDF for contact information and TP Sampling Protocols.

Instructions for taking a Total Phosphorus Surface Grab.

Total Phosphorus Surface Grab Instructions

 

 

 

 

 

 

Field Sheets

Notice: Do Not Print Field Sheets on Inkjet Printers. Field sheets must be completed in the boat at the time of your readings. There is a good chance your forms will get wet and inkjet printing runs when wet. Please use a laser printer or contact the VLMP office and we will gladly mail you extra data forms.

And please make a copy of your field sheet for your records prior to mailing. We want to be sure your hard work does not get lost in the mail.

Secchi Monitor Field Sheet
Secchi Field Sheet
Secchi Form Instructions and Sample Field Sheet
Field Form Helper

Additional Resources

Water Quality and Invasive Plant Patrol Workshop Schedule

Annual re-certification is now required on the Secchi Simulator. Your login should be included in your spring packet or contact the VLMP office at 207-783-7733.

Presentation Slides from the New Monitor training workshopFile is large and may take a moment to load.

Volunteer Contribution Tracking Sheet                      PDF                   MS Word
Please help us estimate the value of the contribution made by VLMP Water Quality Monitors and Invasive Plant Patrollers to the monitoring and protection of Maine waters. Use this sheet (front and back) to track any time and expenses related to your monitoring and lake stewardship activity for this year.

Graphing Secchi Disk Transparency Instructions (pdf)

Quality Assurance Project Plan (pdf 150k). The QAPP (“Quality Assurance Project Plan”) is a guide for proper procedures for lake water quality monitoring by volunteers in the VLMP. This plan has been reviewed and approved by the U.S. EPA, and describes the VLMP structure and how we assure that quality data are gathered. It can serve as an example of how a formal Quality Assurance Plan should be constructed.

Stay current with Publications including The Water Column and the Maine Lakes Report online.

Volunteers – Please consider making this appeal letter available to your lake association. A contribution from your association helps the VLMP to continue to provide you with training, technical support and equipment.

Our Mission

The Mission of the Maine Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program is to help protect Maine lakes through widespread citizen participation in the gathering and dissemination of credible scientific information pertaining to lake health. The VLMP trains, certifies and provides technical support to hundreds of volunteers who monitor a wide range of indicators of water quality, assess watershed health and function, and screen lakes for invasive aquatic plants and animals. In addition to being the primary source of lake data in the State of Maine, VLMP volunteers benefit their local lakes by playing key stewardship and leadership roles in their communities.

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The VLMP is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization committed to the collection of information pertaining to lake water quality. For 40 years, trained volunteers throughout Maine have donated their time so that we may all learn more about one of Maine’s most beautiful and important resources — our lakes.