The most important thing to the ecosystem is the purity of its lifeblood, the water. Our organization monitors rivers, wetlands, springs, and lakes. Several programs are established to support our work, the MiCorps Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program, the MiCorps Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program and the Yellow Dog RIVERKEEPER®. Scroll down to view more information.

MiCorps Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program:

The Michigan Clean Water Corps (MiCorps) is a network of volunteer monitoring programs in Michigan. It was created through Michigan Executive Order #2003-15 to assist the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) in collecting and sharing water quality data for use in water resources management and protection programs.The Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program is a part of MiCorps and has been established for Lake Independence which is a part of the greater Yellow Dog Watershed. Lake Independence is tested about 16 times throughout the summer for chlorophyll, transparency, temperature, total phosphorus, and dissolved oxygen. The results are given to MiCorps and will be available on the MiCorps website and in their annual publication. Read more about CLMP


MiCorps Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program:

The YDWP has been a part of the MiCorps (VSMP) Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program for the Yellow Dog River since 2004 and this year we started the MiCorps (VSMP) for the Salmon-Trout River. The VSMP programs incorporate: volunteer participation, stream habitat assessment, macroinvertebrate collection, and a stream quality score. The program runs twice a year for both streams and we are always looking for any interested volunteers. No special skills or prior knowledge necessary. Our staff will be delighted to train you. Read more about the latest Stream Monitoring



As of July 2008, the Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve has become a member of WATERKEEPER® Alliance. This organization is an international coalition of organizations and individuals that watch over rivers, lakes, and other waterbodies that was started by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. They use advocacy tools and legal measures to secure a cleaner environment and we are proud to be a part of this effort. As a member organization, we have created our RIVERKEEPER® program. Chauncey Moran is the Yellow Dog RIVERKEEPER® and works to keep the river free from pollutants, in free-flowing condition, and serve as a contact for citizens to report violations. If you see any illegal activity in the watershed, email Chauncey at




Springs Analysis:

A total of 10 sites were sampled with Keweenaw Bay Indian Community four times during 2012 for a large number of surface water parameters such as chloride, total dissolved solids, and metals. These sample locations are the very beginnings of the East and Middle Branch Salmon-Trout River and are critical locations for gathering baseline conditions of water resources in the area.


Baseline Surface Water Sampling:

Multiple sites within both the Yellow Dog and Salmon-Trout River watersheds were tested by Dr. John Ejnik of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater for trace metals, field parameters, and more. These baseline sites were tested three times this summer and sent to a certified lab for analysis. 2012 marks the 8th year that this type of high quality water testing was done.


Other collectors are the USEPA, USGS, MDEQ, and MDNR.

Volunteer Water Monitoring Participant