Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Water Quality


Volunteers, DNR staff, county staff and others collect water clarity, temperature and dissolved oxygen, as well as other water quality data, on lakes across Wisconsin. Around 1,000 volunteers are currently active, and the network has been going strong since 1986. Water clarity is measured with a black and white disk called a "Secchi Disk".

Satellite images are used to retrieve water clarity data for lakes across the state. This effort began in 1999 when the University of Wisconsin-Madison Environmental Remote Sensing Center (ERSC) developed a model for the retrieval of water clarity data from satellite images and Citizen Lake Monitoring Network volunteers provided on-the-ground Secchi data to calibrate this model for each satellite image. Water clarity data was retrieved for over 8,000 lakes statewide between 1999 and 2001. The DNR continues to analyze data in this way today in its remote sensing program.

Graphs & Data

Contact information

For information on Lakes in Wisconsin, contact:
Wisconsin DNR Lakes
Division of Water
Bureau of Water Quality

Water Quality Contacts

Lakes Full Site | Feedback On Lakes Site

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Full Site

DNR Logo

The Official Internet site for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

101 S. Webster Street . PO Box 7921 . Madison, Wisconsin 53707-7921 . 608.266.2621