Submitting Data to SWIMS
All Water Action Volunteers data is entered into the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Surface Water Integrated Monitoring System (SWIMS) database. The SWIMS database is used by DNR staff to enter and search for water quality monitoring information for assessing the health of our state’s waters and to guide water protection and restoration decision-making. The database is also linked directly to the DNR’s Surface Water Data Viewer online mapping tool.
Are you an active WAV volunteer? Click the button below to submit your stream data. If you need any assistance with SWIMS, please contact WAV Program Staff directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Log in to the SWIMS Database
Newly trained WAV volunteers will need to complete a few steps before being able to submit data to the DNR’s SWIMS database. New WAV volunteers should not complete these steps until they have attended a baseline stream monitoring training.
- Get a Wisconsin Web Access Management System (WAMS) ID. Fill out the Self-Registration form on this website.
- Check your email for a confirmation from WAMS, which will contain your new WAMS ID.
- Work with your local WAV Coordinator and WAV Program Staff to select a monitoring site and identify the Station ID for the site. WAV Coordinators and WAV Program Staff will help confirm that the site is appropriate and safe for you to monitor.
- Share your new WAMS ID (username) and your Station ID, along with your contact information, with your local WAV Coordinator and WAV Program Staff. WAV Program Staff will use your WAMS ID and Station ID to create a SWIMS profile for you and give you access to submit data for that station in SWIMS.
- You can now log in to SWIMS and begin submitting data!
Selecting a Monitoring Site
In the SWIMS database, your stream monitoring location is represented by a Station ID. This six to eight digit number is tied to a specific GPS location, so that your data can be pinpointed to the specific site you monitor on your stream. Before entering data in the SWIMS database, volunteers should work with their local WAV Coordinator and WAV Program Staff to choose a stream monitoring site and identify the Station ID. WAV Program Staff may need to create a new Station ID if your stream site has never been monitored.
Enter the Surface Water Data Viewer Explore the SWDV mapping tool above to see if your preferred monitoring site already has a Station ID. If it does have a Station ID, it doesn’t mean that someone is actively monitoring the site. It just means that at some point, a biologist or a volunteer collected water quality data at the site.
Entering and Editing Your Data
WAV Baseline Monitoring volunteers enter their stream monitoring data each month into SWIMS. Some volunteers participating in Special Projects monitoring will not need to do this. *Note – the video below uses the old SWIMS user interface. We’ll be uploading a new video soon that demonstrates how to submit data in the new SWIMS user interface launching May 2023.
Exploring Stream Data
The data in the SWIMS database is linked to other DNR webpages that allow the public to interact with Wisconsin’s water quality data. Stream monitoring data collected by both volunteers and biologists can be accessed from several different tools, including our own WAV Stream Monitoring Data Dashboard. Additionally, the Wisconsin DNR sends water quality data to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which has additional data exploration tools.
Learn more by visiting our Data page!
Questions or need assistance?
Send an email to WAV Program Staff at email@example.com.