The data rescue intern:
Over 1500 water chemistry records from Saskatchewan water bodies were collected by the Saskatchewan Fisheries Research Laboratory in Saskatoon, SK spanning from the years 1920-1990. Each record was typewritten and contained up to 86 water chemistry parameters. The locations of where these water quality samples were collected from were largely recorded based on approximate coordinates, nearby landmarks or towns, or legal land descriptions. The Saskatchewan Fisheries Research Laboratory was shut down in the early 1990s due to lack of funding, and these paper records were left to the fisheries unit of the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment in binders. These records serve as a valuable baseline for water quality data for an unprecedented number of waters across the province of Saskatchewan.
Living data intern, Elizabeth Houghton, had the opportunity to help rescue this dataset under the supervision of Rebecca Perry (Eberts) and Mark Duffy (Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment, Fish, Wildlife, and Lands Branch). She received scanned copies of the original paper records and spreadsheets of these data which had been previously digitized by Jayme Menard with help from several undergraduate students. She spent six weeks cleaning and georeferencing these data. To georeference this dataset, she used the name of the water body that each water sample had been collected from, any other recorded geographic information, and sometimes a bit of detective work to find the location of each sample on HABISask where she could then extract and record the correct geographic coordinates for each water sample. This dataset and accompanying metadata will soon be publicly available through the Saskatchewan GeoHub repository.