Welcome to the National Lake Blitz!

Photo by Kyndra Jones  • 2022 Lake Biodiversity Photo Challenge

Registration is open for the 3rd Annual National Lake Blitz!

The goal of the National Lake Blitz is to encourage the widespread monitoring of lakes across Canada using simple tools so participants can easily understand the impacts of climate change on lakes.

From May to September, Lake Blitz volunteers across Canada help create a ‘snapshot’ of lake health by collecting temperature readings at their chosen lake and shoreline photos of their location and the colour of the water. All the data that’s being collected is added to the Lake Observation Map that can be viewed in real-time!

Register below! 

Questions? Contact the Lake Blitz Program Manager Camille LeBlanc at lakeblitz@livinglakescanada.ca.

OR complete the scrolling fields below. Registration closes May 1st, 2023

Scroll down to learn more!

Explore the Lake Observation Map • Learn more about the Lake Blitz • Check out the Volunteer Resources

Our Funders

Thank you to RBC Tech for Nature for making the Lake Blitz possible and to TD Friends of the Environment and the New Horizons for Seniors Program for their additional support.

What is the National Lake Blitz?

Blitz: a sudden, energetic, and concerted effort, typically on a specific task

The goal of the National Lake Blitz is to encourage the widespread monitoring of lakes across Canada using simple tools so participants can easily understand the impacts of climate change on freshwater lakes.

The Lake Blitz is open to everyone. To monitor a lake, participants don’t need a science/technical background or any formal training. Instead, all you need as a volunteer is a Lake Blitz Kit (which we’ll send you), a camera (or phone with a camera), and a lake you care about.

Volunteer Commitment

As a volunteer, you will get the chance to take action to address the climate crisis by collecting simple yet crucial data on freshwater health. Lake Blitz volunteers will become part of a growing national network of water stewards who will meet regularly online to share results, ask questions and sit in on presentations from water experts from across Canada. As data is collected it will be automatically displayed on the Lake Blitz Observation Map available here at lakeblitz.livinglakescanada.ca. Volunteers can even win prizes!

The Equipment you will need to be a part of the Blitz:

  • Lake Blitz Test Kits (including a thermometer, data sheets and a field guide with detailed instructions) provided by Living Lakes Canada
  • Camera or Cellphone with a camera
  • Cellphone or Computer

Lake Blitz Sampling Process:

  1. Select a sample site on your local lake where you can measure temperature in water at least 1 metre deep (docks, boats or other safe access points work well). Choose a site that you can visit twice per month from May to September.
  2. To enter data in the field you can use the Lake Blitz Observation Form on the Survey 123 app or get ready to enter data onto your data card.
  3. Using the Lake Blitz Field Guide instructions and thermometer, sample for water and air temperatures.
  4. Record the depth of your water temperature measurements using the tape measurer in your kit. Measure the distance between the end of the thermometer to where the string becomes dry. 
  5. Using your camera or smartphone take a photo of the lake shoreline and water colour. Take additional photos each month if you notice any changes.
  6. Observe your surroundings and record any wildlife and aquatic invasive species you see. Not sure what species are invasive? Use the invasive species ID guide in the field guide or contact your local invasive species council to learn more. Snap a photo to support your observations.
  7. Submit your data, photos, and observations to the Lake Blitz Observation form using the mobile app or on your desktop at lakeblitz.livinglakescanada.ca
  8. Repeat steps 2-7 throughout the summer.

Our 2023 Volunteer Guide with full details will be made available soon.

Lake Blitz Observation Map

Our interactive Lake Observation Map is home to all the data collected by National Lake Blitz volunteers!

👇 Zoom in for Monitoring Site Summaries & Photos (the map takes a moment to load)

Lake Blitz Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What happens if I want to monitor but I am on holidays during the sampling weekends?

A: The sampling should be consistent but a 2-3 day variation is acceptable. Consider creating a team of close friends, neighbours or coworkers who can fill in for the days you will be gone. 

Q: Do we collect any other data while we are monitoring, if we see wildlife for example?

A: Yes, we collect a range of data sets. Each data sheet comes with a spot for you to input what wildlife, invasive species or issues you see while monitoring.

Q: How do we enter our data, and what is it being used for?

A: Data is collected using the Lake Blitz Observation form on the Survey123 platform. Use either the Survey 123 mobile app at the lake or the data cards provided in the Lake Blitz kit and the desktop version once home. See pages 5, 8 and 25 on the Lake Blitz Field Guide for information on data collection and entry. 

The data will be used to build a national database and will help to validate the use of community science to measure climate change impacts on freshwater.

Q: Once monitoring is finished, what do we do with our kits?

A: We encourage our volunteers to keep their kits and take part next year! If you don’t think you will use your kit again, consider encouraging a friend to become a lake monitor for 2023 and pass the kit on. Kits can also be returned to Living Lakes Canada #202A 330 Baker Street, Nelson BC, V1L 4H5.

Q: What if my kit arrives broken or equipment does not work?

A: Contact lakeblitz@livinglakescanada.ca. We will send you another.

Q: When should I sample if I miss a sampling weekend?

A: For those who may miss a sampling weekend, please feel free to monitor the next weekend. In order to fulfill the 10 sampling days per year, those lakes that remain ice-free can be monitored into October.

Q: Do I need a log-in and password to use the Survey 123 app?

A: No login is needed to access the Survey 123 app. To get started, open the app and select “Continue without signing in” (see image below). This will take you into the app where you can then follow the steps on page 8 of the Lake Blitz Field Guide

Q: How do I change my location when using the mobile app?

A: To change the location, first access the Lake Blitz Observation form at lakeblitz.livinglakescanada.ca on a mobile browser. Click on “SUBMIT YOUR MONITORING RESULTS” and select “open in browser”. The blue location cursor can now be moved. Select OK in the top right corner to save the new location. Please note that you cannot change the location while using the Survey 123 app.

Q:What time of day should I take my observations?

A: Since temperature fluctuates throughout the day, choose a consistent time of day when data can be gathered. 

Q: When I enter my photos, the form says they are invalid. Why aren’t my photos accepted?

A: This is likely because the entry exceeded the photo limits on the form. Each photo entry section has a maximum photo entry: 4 lake photos, 6 wildlife photos, 3 invasive species photos, 6 issues and concerns photos. Limits are placed on photo uploads because of storage space and data page loading time.

Q: What should I do if I see a priority invasive species?

A: If you see any invasive species you are concerned about or think should be reported immediately, contact lakeblitz@livinglakescanada.ca and provide a photo. If you come into contact with a priority species such as Zebra and Quagga mussels, call your province or territories reporting line. Phone numbers can be found on page 23 of the Lake Blitz Field Guide.

Volunteer Resources

2022 Lake Blitz Wrap-Up

2022 Lake Blitz Monitoring Training

2022 Lake Blitz Monthly Meet-up Recordings