Carter Creek, Little Roche A Cri Creek Watershed (CW01)
Carter Creek, Little Roche A Cri Creek Watershed (CW01)
Carter Creek (1351200)
14.15 Miles
3.47 - 17.62
Natural Community
Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model results that use predicted flow and temperature based on landscape features and related assumptions. Ranges of flow and temperature associated with specific aquatic life communities (fish, macroinvertebrates) help biologists identify appropriate resource management goals. Wisconsin's Riverine Natural Communities.
Cool-Warm Mainstem
Year Last Monitored
This date represents the most recent date of water quality monitoring stored in the SWIMS system. Additional field surveys for fish and habitat may be available subsequent to this date.
2016
Good
 
Adams
Trout Water 
Trout Waters are represented by Class I, Class II or Class III waters. These classes have specific ecological characteristics and management actions associated with them. For more information regarding Trout Classifications, see the Fisheries Trout Class Webpages.
Yes
Outstanding or Exceptional 
Wisconsin has designated many of the state's highest quality waters as Outstanding Resource Waters (ORWs) or Exceptional Resource Waters (ERWs). Waters designated as ORW or ERW are surface waters which provide outstanding recreational opportunities, support valuable fisheries and wildlife habitat, have good water quality, and are not significantly impacted by human activities. ORW and ERW status identifies waters that the State of Wisconsin has determined warrant additional protection from the effects of pollution. These designations are intended to meet federal Clean Water Act obligations requiring Wisconsin to adopt an 'antidegradation' policy that is designed to prevent any lowering of water quality - especially in those waters having significant ecological or cultural value.
No
Impaired Water 
A water is polluted or 'impaired' if it does not support full use by humans, wildlife, fish and other aquatic life and it is shown that one or more of the pollutant criteria are not met.
No

Fish and Aquatic Life

Current Use
The use the water currently supports. This is not a designation or classification; it is based on the current condition of the water. Information in this column is not designed for, and should not be used for, regulatory purposes.
Class III Trout
Streams capable of supporting a seasonal coldwater sport fishery and which may be managed as coldwater streams.
Attainable Use
The use that the investigator believes the water could achieve through managing "controllable" sources. Beaver dams, hydroelectric dams, low gradient streams, and naturally occurring low flows are generally not considered controllable. The attainable use may be the same as the current use or it may be higher.
FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
Designated Use
This is the water classification legally recognized by NR102 and NR104, Wis. Adm. Code. The classification determines water quality criteria and effluent limits. Waters obtain designated uses through classification procedures.
Cold
Streams capable of supporting a cold water sport fishery, or serving as a spawning area for salmonids and other cold water fish species. Representative aquatic life communities, associated with these waters, generally require cold temperatures and concentrations of dissolved oxygen that remain above 6 mg/L. Since these waters are capable of supporting natural reproduction, a minimum dissolved oxygen concentration of 7 mg/L is required during times of active spawning and support of early life stages of newly-hatched fish.

Overview

Carter Creek is classified as a warm water sport fishery and a Class I, II, III trout fishery, depending on its stream segment. Roche-A-Cri State Park, Carter Creek Fishery Area and Colburn Public Hunting Grounds are in the vicinity of, or adjacent to, the creek. Beaver and beaver dams have cause severe problems, especially in the Colburn Public Hunting Grounds (Ironside, 2001). In-stream cover is poor and the reproduction potential is limited due to lack of spawning areas. Rough fish have access from the Wisconsin River via Little Roche-A-Cri Creek.

Biotic index sampling in 1979 indicated good and very good water quality. The town of Colburn is located in the upper watershed where wind erosion occurs (Adams County, 1987). This data may be of limited use due to changes in the watershed over 30 years. Nutrients and pesticides may be entering the creek (Schultz, 1989).

Date  2011

Author   Aquatic Biologist

Historical Description

Carter Creek, T17N, RSE, Section 1 Surface Acres = 26, Miles = 17.2
This is a clear, hard water tributary of Little Roche-a-Cri Creek which flows in
southwesterly direction. Sand is the dominant bottom type. Although the entire stream
is considered trout water (brook and brown trout), that portion flowing tlirough Colburn
Township is considered the best. Northern pike inhabit most of the stream, and yellow
perch have been found in the lower end. Marsh furbearers and beaver are present and
wood ducks nest along the stream. There are over 2,600 acres of adjoining wetland.
The aerial groundwater survey conducted February, 1963, found open water upstream
from CTH "G" and downstream from STH 13. A total of 5.2 miles of stream passes
through public land. Access is also possible from 12 road crossings.

From: Klick, Thomas A. and C.W. Threinen. 1966. Surface Water Resources of Adams County:
Lake and Stream Classification Project. Wisconsin Conservation Department, Madison, WI.

Date  1966

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Carter Creek, Little Roche A Cri Creek Watershed (CW01) Fish and Aquatic LifeCarter Creek, Little Roche A Cri Creek Watershed (CW01) RecreationCarter Creek, Little Roche A Cri Creek Watershed (CW01) Fish Consumption

General Condition

The Carter Creek (midpoint S29 T19N R7E to CTH G) was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; temperature data did not exceed the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water was meeting this designated use and not considered impaired.

Date  2017

Author  Amanda Smith

General Condition

Monitoring in the last 10 years show two "good" condition values in the upper stretch of Carter Creek. Macroinvertebrate values integrate local and regional water quality conditions.

Date  2011

Author   Aquatic Biologist

Condition

Wisconsin has over 84,000 miles of streams, 15,000 lakes and milllions of acres of wetlands. Assessing the condition of this vast amount of water is challenging. The state's water monitoring program uses a media-based, cross-program approach to analyze water condition. An updated monitoring strategy (2015-2020) is now available.

Compliance with Clean Water Act fishable, swimmable standards are located in the Executive Summary of Water Condition in 2016 . See also 'monitoring' and 'projects'.

Reports

Recommendations

Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Carter Creek - Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
Monitor to Evaluate Stream Baseflow

Management Goals

Wisconsin's Water Quality Standards provide qualitative and quantitative goals for waters that are protective of Fishable, Swimmable conditions [Learn more]. Waters that do not meet water quality standards are considered impaired and restoration actions are planned and carried out until the water is once again fishable and swimmable

Management goals can include creation and implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load Analysis, habitat restoration work, partnership education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below.

Monitoring

Monitoring the condition of a river, stream, or lake includes gathering physical, chemical, biological, and habitat data. Comprehensive studies often gather all these parameters in great detail, while lighter assessment events will involve sampling physical, chemical and biological data such as macroinvertebrates. Aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish communities integrate watershed or catchment condition, providing great insight into overall ecosystem health. Chemical and habitat parameters tell researchers more about human induced problems including contaminated runoff, point source dischargers, or habitat issues that foster or limit the potential of aquatic communities to thrive in a given area. Wisconsin's Water Monitoring Strategy was recenty updated.

Grants and Management Projects

Monitoring Projects

Watershed Characteristics

Carter Creek is located in the Little Roche A Cri Creek watershed which is 196.20 miĀ². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (39%), agricultural (30%) and a mix of wetland (12%) and other uses (19%). This watershed has 108.40 stream miles, 12,554.07 lake acres and 18,156.97 wetland acres.

Nonpoint Source Characteristics

This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, Low for runoff impacts on lakes and High for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of High. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.However, all waters are affected by diffuse pollutant sources regardless of initial water quality. Applications for specific runoff projects under state or county grant programs may be pursued. For more information, go to surface water program grants.

Natural Community

Carter Creek is considered a Cool-Warm Mainstem under the state's Natural Community Determinations.

Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model results that use predicted flow and temperature based on landscape features and related assumptions. Ranges of flow and temperature associated with specific aquatic life communities (fish, macroinvertebrates) help biologists identify appropriate resource management goals. Wisconsin's Riverine Natural Communities.

Fisheries & Habitat

In-stream cover is poor and the reproduction potential is limited due to lack of spawning areas. Rough fish have access from the Wisconsin River via Little Roche-A-Cri Creek. Biotic index sampling in 1979 indicated good and very good water quality. The town of Colburn is located in the upper watershed where wind erosion occurs (Adams County, 1987).

Date  2011

Author   Aquatic Biologist