Fish and Aquatic Life
Coles Valley Creek, located in central Monroe County, flows for approximately 5.3 miles in a northwesterly direction before reaching Silver Creek. Only the extreme lower end of Coles Valley Creek flows through Fort McCoy. It has a moderate gradient of 41 feet per mile and drains agricultural land with wooded hillsides. Coles Valley Creek is a Class I trout stream for its entire length.
The most recent survey, conducted in 1999, documented cool, clear water with a stream bottom comprised primarily of sand with lesser amounts of gravel, rubble, and silt. The riparian area consisted of two thirds woodland and one third meadow. A naturally reproducing brook trout population was observed as well as a variety of forage fish species. Overhanging vegetation was the primary cover for fish. Monroe County, with assistance from Fort McCoy, installed LUNKER structures in Coles Valley Creek between 1999 and 2000 to add overhead cover for adult fish. A fish and habitat survey of Coles Valley Creek should be conducted to determine any changes in the brook population since the installation of additional fish cover. DNR has not stocked Coles Valley Creek since 1978. Access is available from four road crossings and Fort McCoy.
Author Aquatic Biologist
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
|Project Name (Click for Details)||Year Started|
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||10009153||Coles Valley (24-5) St.1- Hawk Rd. Bridge||Map||Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||10009181||Station 3 - Index Road Bridge (Schmidt Farm)||Map||Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||423092||Creek 24-5 (Cole'S Valley) at Hawk Rd||9/21/1999||11/11/2009||Map||Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||10013993||Coles Valley Creek Station 1-1963-Ne 1/4 Nw 1/4 S24-Starts At Hwy. 16 Bridge Crossing.||11/5/1994||10/22/2003||Map||Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||10009180||Station 2 - Independence Road Bridge||10/14/1999||10/14/1999||Map||Data|
|1661200||Unnamed||10013994||Coles Valley Creek Station 3-1963-Sw 1/4 Se 1/4 S19-Starts At Confluence With Creek 19-15.||Map||Data|
Unnamed is located in the Upper La Crosse River watershed which is 126.12 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (48%), grassland (24%) and a mix of agricultural (14%) and other uses (13%). This watershed has 167.76 stream miles, 207.50 lake acres and 4,875.27 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Not Ranked for runoff impacts on lakes and Medium for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of Medium. 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.