Benthic Macroinvertebrate Identification

Certification is an important component of the program. It ensures program support, provides access to resources such as free or low-cost basic equipment, and it is especially important for mainting quality assurance and quality control.

Groups can become certified if they are West Virginia residents (this includes part-time residents, students, and other regional groups at the discretion of the coordinator) and they agree to the program's memorandum of understanding (MOU). The volunteer group must agree to the terms and conditions of the MOU in order to be eligible to receive a biosurvey kit. In order to maintain certification, groups must meet the following minimum criteria.

  1. Complete and submit a minimum of one survey each year (two are preferred). If you cannot submit an annual survey, please provide the coordinator with a brief explanation. Some examples include: extreme low-water conditions; for groups with multiple stations (not all stations could be monitored); a shortage of personnel, etc.
  2. All surveys are reviewed by the coordinator. Mail a clear copy to WVDEP's Save Our Streams and keep a copy for your records. You can also scan and submit your survey via email to the coordinator and enter your survey in the Volunteer Assessment Database. Note: Several weeks or up to a month may pass before the coordinator returns your survey, so you should always keep a copy for your records.
  3. Complete your re-certification within one year after receiving your first certification and every two years thereafter. Note: It is the volunteers' responsibility to maintain their certification. The WV Save Our Streams program does not send out notifications if a certification is about to expire.
  4. Re-certification requires a test and/or field visit so that the coordinator or a designee can observe your monitoring techniques/skills.

Additional Information

  • Certification Exams
    • Description: Certification exams for WV Save Our Streams Volunteer Monitor's Certification.