Fish and Aquatic Life
This small, clear stream begins near the Dane County line and flows south for 4 miles before entering the Little Sugar River east of New Glarus. Ward Creek flows through an agricultural valley, but there is some buffering along the banks with grasses and shrubs. There is an abundance of aquatic macrophytes (Water Resources of Green Co., Amrhein , pers. obs). The stream is a Class III trout stream for two miles up from its mouth. This section has the potential to be a Class II stream and is designated as an ERW. The rare redside dace has been found in the stream. Sampling of fish in 2002 showed the presence of small brown trout along with sculpin and other forage fish. The stream has the potential to respond to stream bank stabilization and habitat improvement work (Himebauch, pers. comm.).
Author Aquatic Biologist
Bush, D.M., R. Cornelius, D. Engle, and C.L. Brynildson. 1980. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Green County, 2nd Edition. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, Wisconsin.
Originating near the Dane County line. this small. clear stream flows southward and enters the Little Sugar River east of New Glarus. Sand and gravel are the primary bottom types with small amounts of silt and rubble present. The stream runs primarily through pasture and cropland where its banks. although steep in places. are stabilized by grass and sedges. Instream cover is provided by undercut banks. overhanging grasses and aquatic macrophytes (R~nunculus sp.). The lower third of the stream has been ditched.
The entire length of Ward Creek is managed as Class III brown trout water, although in years of low water, the trout habitat is marginal. Forage fish, except for white suckers, are not very abundant and the relatively rare redside dace is present in small numbers. r4uskrats are common throughout the stream, and a variety of wildlife is found in the lower end where the stream runs through the New Glarus Wildlife Area. Public access
available from three road crossings, and from 1.12 miles of stream frontage provided by the wildlife area. Fish Species: Brown trout, central mudminnow, redside dace, southern redbelly dace, fathead minnow, creek chub, white sucker, brook stickleback, Johnny darter, mottled sculpin.
Surface Acres = 2.1. Length = 4.4 r4iles. Gradient = 23 ft./mi.. Base Discharge = 2.9 cu. ft./sec.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
From: Poff, Ronald J., and C.W. Threinen, Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Green County, Wisconsin Conservation Department, Madison I, 1961.
Flows south into the Little Sugar River. Accessible through public hunting grounds. One-third of the stream has been ditched for drainage. Managed for brown trout; however, not stocked in 1959. Clear water over sand and gravel bottom. Sparse bank cover at present. Adjoining wetland has significant muskrat population.
Surface Acres= 1.2, Miles= 2.5, Gradient= 10' per mile
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
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'.
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 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
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|882700||Ward Creek||10033786||Ward Creek At CTH W||7/20/2015||7/20/2015||Map||Data|
|882700||Ward Creek||10009522||Ward Creek Upstream Of Airport Rd.||4/18/1980||10/12/2011||Map||Data|
Ward Creek is located in the Little Sugar River watershed which is 133.02 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (74%), forest (15%) and a mix of suburban (5%) and other uses (6%). This watershed has 351.74 stream miles, 50.40 lake acres and 3,252.10 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Not Ranked 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.