Level 2 study program overview

Level 2 study programs are coordinated by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy.

Below is an overview about the program which includes information about training, volunteer commitment, location, timing, frequency, and required equipment.

Level 2 study program icons


Training on how to use sampling equipment and fill out forms will be provided by the Ministry staff at no cost to volunteers. Meeting locations, date, and time will be coordinated with the volunteers.

Volunteer responsibilities

The primary responsibilities of volunteers are to:

  • Record weekly or biweekly water clarity (using a Secchi disk) and surface water temperature readings, dissolved oxygen and temperature profiles, as well as information on weather and lake conditions
  • Maintain and store sampling equipment provided by the Ministry
  • Submit a photo or copy of the completed lab requisition form and field form to the Ministry (see: Submit field data) following each sampling event
    • Volunteers also commit to entering the field data into the standardized digital format (refer to provided excel spreadsheet) and sending within 30 days of the final sampling event for the season
  • Return sampling equipment to Ministry for maintenance and storage within 30 days of the final sampling event for the season unless otherwise arranged


Level 2 studies are only available for select lakes where the Ministry conducts spring overturn and late summer water chemistry monitoring. Each volunteer group will be provided with a map and coordinates to a predetermined station site, from which to collect samples.


Undertake at least 12 evenly spaced samples during ice-off season.


Samples should be taken between 10 am and 2 pm (best time to collect Secchi disk readings) and on the same day of the week when possible.


Provided by Ministry:

  • Secchi disk for measuring lake water clarity data and depth
  • Handheld thermometer
  • Field meter (such as a YSI) for collection of dissolved oxygen and temperature profile data
  • Water sampling equipment and bottles
  • Forms, instructions, shipping labels, and shipping waybills

Monitoring programs may also require watercraft, fuel and other equipment required for safe watercraft operation, including personal flotation devices. These items must be supplied by volunteers.