Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program

In 1981, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) established the Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program (VLMP). The program was primarily established to gather fundamental information on Illinois inland lakes. Annually, 150-200 lakes are sampled by approximately 150 citizen volunteers statewide. Volunteers are mainly  lake shore residents, lake owners/managers, members of environmental groups, public water supply personnel, and citizens with interest in a particular lake. Greater Egypt has been coordinating VLMP volunteers in southern Illinois since the program’s establishment.  In 2011, Greater Egypt coordinated volunteers that monitored 18 southern Illinois lakes.

The monitoring season begins May 1st and concludes October 31st with volunteers monitoring their lakes twice a month. Volunteers are required to have access to a boat and anchor, the rest of the material and equipment will be provided to them by IEPA. Training will also be provided by the Regional Coordinator for southern Illinois. Volunteers are divided into three tiers. Tier 1 is the most basic, while Tier 2 and 3 require previous participation in the program. Tier 2 and 3 participation is not guaranteed. Participation is dependent on funding and supplies from IEPA. The level of monitoring is dependent on the tier level of the volunteer.

Tier 1:
Basic lake monitoring. Volunteers measure lake water clarity with a Secchi Disk and make other basic lake observations.  Volunteers record the level of aquatic plant growth, record the siting of any invasive species, the lake water level, weather, and watershed conditions at the time of monitoring.

Tier 2:
After actively participating in Tier 1, volunteers are eligible for Tier 2 monitoring.  Tier 2 volunteers complete Tier 1 monitoring while also taking lake water samples.

Tier 3:
In addition to collecting water samples. Volunteers also collect chlorophyll samples as well as measure oxygen levels and water temperatures.

Greater Egypt is actively seeking volunteers for the following lakes:

#3 South
(Pyramid State Park)
Elkville
City Lake
Mt. Vernon
Sportsmen Club  
Alto Pass
City Reservoir    
Ferne Clyffe
State Park Lake 
New Christopher Reservoir 
Anna State Hospital Reservoir (State Pond)  Glann O. Jones Lake  New Herrin
Reservoir #2* 
Arrowhead Lake  Green River Lake (DuQuoin State Fairgrounds)  New Thompson Lake* 
Bay Creek #5  Hamilton Lake  New Vienna City Reservoir 
Beaver
(Pyramid State Park)
Harrisburg
Holding Reservoir* 
New West Frankfort Reservoir 
Benton Lake  Harrisburg Lake  Old Ben Mine Reservoir 
Bloomfield Lake  Hohman Lake  Old Chirstopher Reservoir 
Boulder-North
(Pyramid State Park) 
Illinois Central Reservoir  Old Vienna City Reservoir 
Boulder-South
(Pyramid State Park) 
Illinois Central Reservoir (Historical)  Old West Frankfort Reservoir 
Buckner City Reservoir  Jaycee Lake (Heil Lake)  Omaha City Reservoir 
Campbell Lake  Johnston City Reservoir  One Horse Gap Lake 
Campus Lake*  Kinneman Lake  Pinckneyville
Reservoir* 
Carbon Lake  L & N Reservoir     Rounds Hollow 
Carbondale City Lake*  Lake Glendale  Rend Lake 
Carrier Mills Lake (Doc Mac)  Lake Kinkaid*  Sahara Coal Company 
Carrier Mills Public
Water Supply Lake 
Lake
Murphysboro* 
Sesser Lake 
Cedar Lake*  Lake of Egypt*  Snyder’s
Hunting Club Lake 
Chautauqua Lake*  Lake Tecumseh  Spring Arbor Lake* 
Clear Lake  LaRue-Pine Hills Ecol Area     Spring Lake 
Crab Orchard Lake  Little Cedar Lake  Sugar Creek Lake 
Crystal Lake  Little Grassy Lake*  Superior Lake 
Devil’s Kitchen Lake*  Lost  The Big Sink 
Dolan Lake  Lyerla Lake  Tower Island Chute 
Dongola City Reservoir  Marion Reservoir  Turkey Bayou 
DuQuoin Reservoir  McLeansboro Reservoir  Waltonville City Lake 
Dutchman Lake  Mermet Lake  Wesslyn Cut 
Eagly Pond  Miller Lake*  Whoopie Cat Lake 
Eldorado City Reservoir  Moses Lake  Zeigler City Reservoir 

*Lakes with volunteers.

If you should have any questions regarding the program or wish to participate, please contact the Greater Egypt office via phone at (618) 997-9351.