2014 Barry Conservation District Well Water Screening

water screeningThe Barry Conservation District will screen drinking water well samples on August 8th, from 8:00 am through 5:00 pm. Samples can be dropped off to the Barry Conservation District Office at 1611 S. Hanover St. Suite #105, Hastings.

Samples from drinking water wells will be screened for nitrate and nitrite. The screening is open to everyone who uses a personal well for drinking water; however, the number of samples that can be tested is limited to 3 per household. Information and water sample information forms are available at the Barry Conservation District Office, online at, or by calling (269) 948-8056.

This service is for private drinking water wells only. Public water supplies are tested regularly. Please do not bring samples from public water supplies or non-drinking water sources. Only drinking water well samples will be tested. You do not have to use a special bottle for this screening. Any small clean jar will work—one ounce of water is enough.

Please follow the directions below to sample your well. Collect samples just before getting them to the sample drop-off. Samples must be less than 48 hours old for a valid nitrate result.   

1.      Fill out the water sample information sheet (a copy of this form is printed on the back of this page and additional copies will also be available when samples are dropped off).

 2.     Pick a tap that supplies water that has not run through any treatment devices (water softener, carbon filter, etc.). An outdoor faucet often works well.                                  

 3.    Run the water for 20-30 minutes before collecting the sample. This will give the pump time to flush the water pressure tank and plumbing so you can collect a valid sample. Disconnect any hoses before collecting the sample; do not sample through a hose. Rinse the sample bottle and lid thoroughly in the water to be sampled; then fill and cap the bottle. 

4.    Label the bottle clearly with your name, the sampling date, and the well name (cottage well, Mom’s well, etc.) using a waterproof pen. Put the sample information sheet into a waterproof bag, and then seal the water sample and the information into a second waterproof bag.

5.    Keep the sample dark and cold (on ice or refrigerated) until it is dropped off.                          

All results are confidential. You will be mailed a copy of your results in 8 to 10 weeks, with information about what you can do if the concentration of nitrate or nitrite appears to be elevated.

Be sure to fill out the sample information sheet completely and include it with your water sample. We need a complete mailing address to get your results back to you.

Click here for an electronic copy of the sample form: 2014 Barry County well water screening flyer. Paper copies are also available at the Barry Conservation District office at 1611 S. Hanover St. Suite #105, Hastings.

You can get more information about this event from Rachel Koleda (MAEAP Technician) with The Barry Conservation District Office at (269) 948-8056



 Certificates and Prizes are awarded for:

  • Largest Tree of any species submitted by a Big Tree Hunter over the age of 16 years old.
  • Largest Tree of any species submitted by a Big Tree Hunter 15 years old and under.
  • Largest White Pine (Michigan’s State Tree), any age.
  • Largest Tree of any species for each county.
  • Largest Tree (any species) that is larger than the current registered Michigan State Champion.


  • Tree must be living and accessible for verification.
  • Tree trunk circumference is measured at 4 1/2 feet above ground.
  • Include tree species if possible.
  • All entries must be postmarked by August 1, 2014.

Big Tree Contest (Entry Form)






Barry County Outdoor Recreation Youth Day

Saturday, September 13, 2014

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Historic Charlton Park

A free day of fun where kids can get hands on experience in many different outdoor activities

Hiking, Archery, Bird Watching, Fishing, Target Shooting, Biking, Trapping, Canoeing, Kayaking, Nature Art, Fly Tying, Orienteering, Working Dog Demonstrations…. And MUCH MORE!

  • Free admission for all                            
  • Learn from experts
  • Hands-on activities
  • Displays
  • Demonstrations
  • Free lunch for kids
  • Door Prizes
  • Give-aways
  • Food vendors
  • Get connected with local organizations

Youth Day Flyer & Donor Cover                                                


Organizers of the Barry County Outdoor Recreation Youth Day are seeking sponsors to help support this free event for local youth.  The goals of this event are to make connections between children and activities and to provide support, through participating clubs, organizations and programs, to sustain a child’s interest and involvement in outdoor recreation.  We hope to introduce 1000 children to outdoor recreation through this one-day event filled with hands-on activities and demonstrations.

We need your support to make this event a success!  Your cash or in-kind donation will help us provide lunch, beverages and snacks free of charge to youth participants, develop souvenir passports, support advertising and printing costs, purchase event signage, provide give-away items for each activity, and offer door prizes and raffle items for participants.

You can be a “Champion for Youth” and help local kids develop a love of nature through outdoor recreation by sponsoring at one of these levels:

Gold-$1000            Silver-$500           Bronze-$250

Donations may be in cash or equivalent goods and/or services.  All Champions for Youth will be recognized at the event and are welcome to participate be setting up a sponsor booth or table.

Sponsorship Form (Donations form)

If you would like to be a volunteer at the Youth Day event you can click ib the link below and fill out your information and we will contect you when it get closer to the event.

Volunteer for Youth Day (Link)

For more information on becoming a Champion For Youth, or discuss potential donations of goods or services, contact George Cullers at (269) 945-9218 or Joanne Barnard at the Barry Conservation District, (269) 948-8056; or email



Monthly Meeting Schedule

For the Barry Conservation District


The Barry Conservation District meets at 7:30 a.m. on the third Friday of the month.


January 17th            February 21st      *March 20th, 2014 (Annual Meeting)

**April 25th             May 16th              June 20th                             

July 18th                   August 15th         September 19th

October 17th           November 21st   December 19th


The meetings will be held under the provisions of Open Meetings Act (Public Act 267 of 1976) at Pennock Hospital in the Village View Conference Room, 1009 W. Green St., Hastings, MI


*Annual Meeting will be held at 6:00 p.m. at the Barry Conservation District office.  1611 S Hanover St, Hastings, MI (Secretary of State Building).

**April 25th meeting will be on the fourth Friday of the month.

2014 Meeting Schedule (to print out the schedule)

 We have two new Board Members 

We would like to introduce

Mark Bishop & David Replogle



Mark Bishop                                          David Relogle

Mark Bishop:  My love for the outdoors was instilled in me early on in life.  Growing up on a small lake in Calhoun County and camping up north with my family, contributed to me choosing a career of managing our natural resources.  I am retired from a 34+ year career with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, as a land manager of public lands in Barry and northern Kalamazoo counties.  My background includes planning and on the ground implementation of habitat improvement and restoration projects.  Being good stewards of our renewable resources and making decisions based on sound scientific research will insure that many generations will enjoy this beautiful place we call Barry County.  I look forward to contributing and working with the staff at the BCD in serving the residents of Barry County.

David Replogle:  A lifelong resident of and raised in Yankee Springs Township, David is very concerned about the environment and will do whatever he can to help the Conservation Board. He owns a small farm in Yankee Springs Township with his family, just a few short miles of where he was raised. He hopes that he can bring his technological skills to the table as well as his traditional farming knowledge to help be aware of and avoid the threats to this area.



 17th Annual Thronapple River Clean-up

2012 Photo Contest Winners!!


FrogWatch USA:                                                                       

We have a Chapter here at the Barry Conservation District office.  FrogWatch USA is program where volunteers will help conserve our nation’s amphibians by monitoring one or more local wetland sites to identify local frog and toad species by their breeding calls, and accurately report their findings.

What is FrogWatch USA:  it is a long-term frog and toad monitoring program whose data describe local species diversity, detect rare and invasive species, suggest shifts in species diversity, range, and seasonal timing and may serve as an indicator of wetland health.  FrogWatch USA provides volunteers and their families the opportunity to learn about the environment while collecting valuable information about the frogs and toads local to their area.

Why Monitor Frogs?  Frogs and toads have held cultural importance for centuries:  symbolizing fertility in ancient Egypt, luck in Japan, and rain gods in some Native American cultures.  Today Kermit the Frog is a modern-day celebrity.  Frogs and toads are vitally important in the field of human medicine and compounds from their skin are currently being tested for anti-cancer and anti-HIV properties.

They also play an important role, serving as both prey and predator, in wetlands ecosystems and are considered indicators of environmental health.  Many previously abundant frog and toad populations have experienced dramatic population declines both in the United States and around the world and it’s essential that scientists understand the scope, geographic scale, and cause of the declines.

  Here in Michigan we have 13 different species:  American Bullfrog, American Toad, Cope’s Treefrog, Fowler’s Toad, Gray Treefrog, Green Frog, Midland Chorus frog, Mink Frog, Northern Cricket Frog, Northern Leopard Frog, Pickerel Frog, Spring Peeper, and Wood Frog.

To hear the different calls of the frogs and toads in Michigan go to

For the Mink Frog call go to

For more information on FrogWatch USA go to

SurveySiteRegistration_2012_Form   Click here if you need more copies

ObservationDatasheet_2012_Form  Click here if you need more copies


 Thornapple River Clean-up was a hit: (link)

2012 Photo Contest Winners!!

Wildlife:  Lora Ballinger from Hastings

Agriculture:  Joe Barr from Delton

People In Nature:  Marge Faber from Hastings

Trees & Plants:  Jeff Newman from Delton

Landscapes:  Ken Kornheiser from Plainwell