Fish and Aquatic Life
Rogers Branch joins with Borah Creek to form the Grant River. It is a spring-fed and seepage stream beginning near the west edge of Fennimore. The stream is managed as a trout stream for eight miles of its length (WDNR, 1980). Trout populations can be marginal, however, due to seasonal low flows and warm temperatures (Lyons, 2000). Historically, the stream has been affected by non-point sources of pollution such as barnyard runoff, excessive streambank grazing, and cropland runoff. Fish kills, which are thought to be related to non-point problems, have occurred (Fix, 1991). As a result of these problems, Rogers Branch is on Wisconsin?s impaired waters (303d) list.
Monitoring was conducted on Rogers Branch as part of a study to determine the influence of intensive rotational grazing (Lyons, et.al., 2000a). Instream habitat was found to be fair to good. Macroinvertebrate samples collected in the spring of 2000 found Rogers Branch at Borah Road to have good water quality (WDNR, 2000). The water at this site was clear, and the bottom substrate was boulder, gravel and rubble. There were some mayflies and caddisflies which can indicate good water quality. The DNR should review whether this stream should remain on the state?s impaired waters list
Author Aquatic Biologist
Rogers Branch is a twelve-mile stream in north central Grant County that has its origin near the village of Fennimore and flows south and joins with Borah Branch to form the Grant River near Lancaster, Wisconsin. It has a moderate to high gradient of 31 feet per mile and drains an area of approximately 14 square miles.
The land use is characterized mostly as agriculture and forest. The stream is fairly small (less than 2 meters wide) for the upper 7 miles of stream. Downstream from Link Road, the stream gains in size until just upstream from Borah Road, where a large spring instantaneously adds approximately 5 cubic feet per second of cold water (10 C) flow to the stream.
Author Aquatic Biologist
The Rogers Branch (Mouth to mile 8) was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; available biological data did not indicate impairment (i.e. no macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scored in the "poor" condition category) based on the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water was not meeting this designated use and was considered impaired. No listing change was needed to this already impaired water.
Author Amanda Smith
Rogers Branch (964300) was assessed during the 2016 listing cycle; total phosphorus sample data exceed 2016 WisCALM listing criteria for the Fish and Aquatic Life use and biological impairment was observed (i.e. at least one macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scored in the poor condition category). Temperature data exceeded 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use.
Author Aaron Larson
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'.
Rogers Branch TMDL
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 or implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load analysis, a Nine Key Element Plan, or other restoration work, education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below online.
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
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Rogers Br is located in the Upper Grant River watershed which is 106.09 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (76%), forest (17%) and a mix of suburban (6%) and other uses (1%). This watershed has 260.94 stream miles, 7.24 lake acres and 6.79 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Not Available 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.