The Dane County Natural Resources Education Center(NREC) provides resources, equipment, expertise and training to area residents concerning many natural resource issues including water quality and quantity, land management, pollinators, and composting. The Center is a network of local organizations coordinated by the Dane County Extension Office. Training on water topics is provided by all sponsoring organizations.
Equipment Location and Access:
Currently following Wisconsin Department of Health Services, UW-Madison, and federal guidelines due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak. The Extension Office is closed and equipment cannot be borrowed. When the NREC resumes its operation, it will be noted on this site.
The Dane County NREC equipment and resources are housed at the Dane County Extension Office, 5201 Fen Oak Drive, Madison, WI 53718.
Users may pick up equipment at the equipment at the Dane County UW-Extension Office (part of the Lyman F. Anderson Agriculture & Conservation Center) by appointment. NREC Brochure outlines the equipment and check out procedures.
Please reserve equipment at least two weeks in advance.
* Denotes training is needed prior to being able to use this equipment, contact Mindy Habecker for this.
Please read the following safety information before using any equipment. NREC Safety Info Form
Additional information and resources can be found on citizen water monitoring at Water Action Volunteer WAV monitoring
Chemical/Physical Testing Equipment
Dissolved oxygen* Dissolved Oxygen Kit Care and Handling
Nitrate (for both drinking water and surface water)* Nitrate Test Kit Care and Handling
Water ecology test kits* (these measure the following: Free acidity, Alkalinity, Carbon Dioxide, Total Hardness, Dissolved Oxygen, and pH)
Phosphate Test Kit* Phosphate Test Kit Care and Handling
Water transparency (turbidity) testing tubes (measures water clarity in streams)
Secchi disk (measures water clarity in lakes and ponds)
Water sampling bottles
Biotic Monitoring Equipment
Aquatic nets (d-frame)
Collection basins (for aquatic macroinvertebrates)
Soil sampling probes* Soil Probe care and handling procedure 2016
Soil test kits for pH*
Land Management Tools
Parsnip remover (tool for removing wild parsnip tap root)
Handsaws and Shovels
Other Equipment, Models and Displays
Storm drain marking equipment Storm drain marking instructions 2016
Hip boots (Hipboot care and handling procedure 2014)
Groundwater Flow Model* GroundWater Model care and handling procedures
Carry Creek (stream model)* Carry Creek Manual Carry Creek care and handling procedure 2016 (revised)
Enviroscape (surface water flow model)* Enviroscape care and handling procedure
Home Composting Display Home Composting Display Care and Handling Procedures
Pollinator Protection Display Pollinator Display Care and Handling Procedures