The Prairie Water Care (PWC) program is a hands-on program for volunteers who are interested in learning about water quality issues. The PWC program has four components:
i) water monitoring,
ii) macro-invertebrate ("bug") identification,
iii) riparian health assessment, and
iv) a specific conservation activity in each area.
The objective of the program is for volunteer groups to understand the importance of each of these aspects to the health of the water and how they are inter-related in purpose.
Each volunteer group receives technical assistance and training from PWC staff of the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please contact Jody Oliver at 306-535-9760.

What do PWC Groups Measure?
  • Water Temperature
  • pH
  • Ammonia/Nitrates
  • Phospates
  • Dissolved Oxygen
  • Electrical Conductivity
  • Fecal Coliform Bacteria
  • Turbidity

WHO: Lac Pelletier Cabin Owners Group (Audrey and Mel Davis, Alice and Wayne Dawson, Gloria and Wally Dyck, Glenn Bratvold, Kay Froese, Glenda Kehoe, Eleanor McDowell, Dianne Nerada, and Joan Williamson)

Phosphates Test

Dissolved Oxygen Test

WHEN: Began sampling in June 2001

Total Dissolved Oxygen

WHERE: 4 locations at Lac Pelletier

Turbidity Test

WHY: The Cabin Owners wanted to understand the importance of a healthy water supply and to ensure the lake water is safe for recreational use

Collecting Bugs

WHAT: The group joins once a month during the spring, summer and fall to conduct water tests, to determine the diversity of bugs in the water, and to analyze the health of the stream bank

Analysing Bugs

RESULTS: At all 4 sampling locations, the group consistently found high levels of total dissolved solids, phosphates, fecal coliform and turbidity in their August samples

Plant Identification

Various photos courtesy of Krista Connick

WHO: Myles Radchenko (Swift Current Comprehensive High School biology teacher) and his Grade 11 biology classes

WHERE: 2 locations in the Swift Current area

WHEN: Began sampling in July 1998

WHY: Mr. Radchenko wanted his students to learn about water testing and to teach his students that they can play a role in creek stewardship
WHAT: Mr. Radchenko collects the creek water samples and brings them to class for the students to test. Mr. Radchenko also analyzes stream bank health at the water sampling sites

RESULTS: Especially during the summer months at the sampling location downstream of Swift Current, the group consistently finds higher levels of fecal coliform bacteria during the summer months compared to the upstream water sampling site

WHO: Downstream Users Group (Jack and Cheri Chalmers, Verlynn Alexander, Barb Hedger, and Reg Parsons)

WHERE: 4 locations downstream of Swift Current

WHEN: Began sampling in January 2003

WHY: The Downstream Users wanted to monitor the water quality of the creek before, during and
after the Swift Current treated sewage effluent discharge

WHAT: The group joins once a month to conduct water tests and will also be monitoring the diversity of bugs in the water during the summer

RESULTS: The groupís first water test was taken before the treated effluent discharge and overall the test showed very good water quality
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