Tainter Creek, Reads and Tainter Creeks Watershed (LW03)
Tainter Creek, Reads and Tainter Creeks Watershed (LW03)
Tainter Creek (1185500)
2.45 Miles
0 - 2.45
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-Cold 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.
2017
Excellent
 
Crawford
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.
Cold (Class II Trout)
Streams 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 through natural reproduction and selective propagation. 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.
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.
Cold (Class II Trout)
Streams 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 through natural reproduction and selective propagation. 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.
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

Tainter Creek begins in south central Vernon and flows into north central Crawford County.
This stream flows in a south easterly direction for 6.8 miles until it reaches the Kickapoo
River north of Gays Mills. Tainter Creek has a rather steep gradient of 50 feet per mile
through Vernon County, but a more gentle gradient of 15 feet per mile through Crawford
County. This stream drains forested hillsides and agricultural valleys as well as the
agricultural headwater plateau. Tainter Creek is a Class II trout stream upstream of CTH B
and an exceptional water resources for 4.8 miles and Class III downstream for the remaining
two miles.
The most recent survey, conducted in 1985, documented a fairly substantial brown trout
population. A 1974 survey documented not only brown trout, but also a very diverse forage
fishery. The stream bottom consisted primarily of cobble and gravel in the upper reaches and
gradually more sand further downstream. In-stream cover included undercut banks, boulders,
and woody debris. Much of Tainter Creek contains a stream channel incised into the valley
floor resulting in vertical raw streambanks which consistently contribute sediment to the
stream. Repairing these vertical banks would benefit the in-stream habitat of Tainter Creek. A
fish and habitat survey should be conducted of Tainter Creek to determine its existing
condition. Tainter Creek would benefit from the purchase of streambank easements from
willing sellers and the restoration of in-stream habitat. WDNR records indicate that Tainter
Creek was stocked with brown trout from 1973 to 1997. From 1998 to present both wild
brook trout and wild brown trout have been stocked. Access to Tainter Creek is from six road
crossings, WDNR owned land and WDNR easements.

From: Ripp, Coreen, Koperski, Cindy and Folstad, Jason. 2002. The State of the Lower Wisconsin River Basin. PUBL WT-559-2002. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.

Date  2002

Author  Cynthia Koperski

Historical Description

The trout fishery in Tainter Creek has good potential for improvement if nonpoint source water pollution is controlled. Livestock pasturing the streambank has degraded in-stream habitat.

Date  1994

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Historical Description

Tainter Creek, T11N, R4W, Section 18. Surface Acres = 6.1, Miles = 3.6, Gradient = 50.0 feet per mile.
A clear, hard water tributary of the Kickapoo River. It heads in Vernon County, flows in a
southerly direction, and joins the Kickapoo in Crawford County. The stream is Class II brown trout water. White sucker, Johnny darter and slimy sculpin are among the forage fish present. Scattered open water areas were observed in the lower two-thirds of the stream (in Vernon County) during the winter aerial groundwater survey. Rubble is slightly dominant over gravel, with silt, sand, hardpan, and boulder comprising the remainder of the bottom types. There is access from three road crossings. Beaver are present and muskrat are significant. There is some wood duck nesting along the stream.

From: Klick, Thomas A. and Threinen, C.W., 1973. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Vernon County, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.

Date  1973

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Tainter Creek, Reads and Tainter Creeks Watershed (LW03) Fish and Aquatic LifeTainter Creek, Reads and Tainter Creeks Watershed (LW03) RecreationTainter Creek, Reads and Tainter Creeks Watershed (LW03) Fish Consumption

General Condition

Tainter Creek was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new total phosphorus sample data were clearly below 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water is meeting this designated use and is not considered impaired.

Date  2017

Author  Ashley Beranek

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.

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

Tainter Creek is located in the Reads and Tainter Creeks watershed which is 135.69 miĀ². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (48%), forest (44%) and a mix of suburban (6%) and other uses (2%). This watershed has 339.00 stream miles, 221.66 lake acres and 1,867.13 wetland acres.

Nonpoint Source Characteristics

This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Not Ranked 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

Tainter Creek is considered a Cool-Cold 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.

Cool (Cold-Transition) Mainstem streams are moderate-to-large but still wadeable perennial streams with cold to cool summer temperatures. Coldwater fishes are common to uncommon, transitional fishes are abundant to common, and warm water fishes are uncommon to absent. Headwater species are common to absent, mainstem species are abundant to common, and river species are common to absent.

Fisheries & Habitat

Trout Classes updated in 2008 -- David Vetrano, Cindy Koperski, October 2003, 608 785-9009, This classification is based upon a survey that indicates the upper 4.8 miles of Tainter Creek is a high quality trout stream, having sufficient natural reproduction to sustain populations of wild trout at or near carrying capacity. Brown trout natural reproduction CTH B upstream - to headwaters. (Class I)

Date  2008

Author  Cynthia Koperski

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