Oregon Lake Watch

Portland State University's Center for Lakes and Reservoirs is excited to re-launch the Oregon Lake Watch program! Lake Watch volunteers play an important role in monitoring the status and health of their lakes. Volunteers are trained as citizen scientists to identify the invasive species that threaten our lakes, as well as collect simple water quality data.

Oregon Lake Watch (or OLW for short) is aimed at finding and training individuals who appreciate Oregon waterways (boaters, anglers, campers, property owners, resource managers, etc.)  so they can play an active role in protecting lakes and reservoirs around the entire state.

In 2009, the Oregon State Marine Board started their statewide aquatic invasive species prevention program; revenues from Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Permit sales have funded efforts to protect Oregon's lakes and other waters through watercraft inspection stations, decontamination units and much more.

Aquatic invasive species (often called 'AIS') such as hydrilla, yellow floating heart, and zebra mussels can seriously damage water bodies and can easily "hitchhike" from one body of water to the next, primarily on boats or boat trailers.  

The risk of invasive species coming to Oregon isn't going away anytime soon: in 2012, 51 boats carrying invasive plants or animals were found at inspection stations.  Those boats were cleaned before moving on, but unfortunately inspection stations aren't foolproof (they don't operate 24 hours, 7 days a week) and it just takes one boat to bring in a host of troubles. That's why we need your help!

Please visit the links above to find out more about the program and whether the OLW is for you.  If you are interested in joining the program, simply fill out this brief survey (click here) or just email us at: olw@pdx.edu with your name and interests.