Buffalo Lake, Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed (UF10)
Buffalo Lake, Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed (UF10)
Buffalo Lake North Side Beach (168000)
0.34 Miles
0 - 0
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.
Reservoir
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
Unknown
 
Marquette
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.
No
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.
FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
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.
Default FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - Default Waters do not have a specific use designation subcategory but are considered fishable, swimmable waters.

Overview

Fox River At Buffalo Lake, in the Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed, is a 2,178.87 acre lake that falls in Marquette County. This lake is managed for fishing and swimming and is currently considered impaired.

Date  2011

Author   Aquatic Biologist

Historical Description

Source: 1963, Surface Water Resources of Marquette County Buffalo Lake, T14, 15N, R9, 10E, Surface Acres = 2,447.0, S.D.F. = 4.74, Maximum Depth = 15 feet.

A long, irregular lake on the Upper Fox River above Montello. This was originally a natural lake created by the deposit of sediment in the downstream area forming a natural lake created by the deposit of sediment in the downstream area forming a natural barrier (Smith, 1908). Later a dam with three-foot head was constructed to provide gristmill power. The present structure maintains a six-foot head but is not employed for power. The lake was, for a short time after 1856, part of a navigation system connecting the Wisconsin River with Lake Michigan (Portage to Green Bay). Largemouth bass, panfish, walleye, channel catfish and northern pike constitute the fishery. Carp are abundant and are a major use problem. Weed beds are continually diminishing in size and the water is turbid as a result of rough fish activity and wind-wave action in the shallow water. Public access is amply afforded by road ends and state lands acquired from the federal government in 1961. The river above and below the lake is traversable by boat, and recently constructed "pullover" trolley offers relatively easy portage of the dam. Waterfowl make extensive use of the lake. This is perhaps the only lake in Marquette County with potential for boating.

Date  1963

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Buffalo Lake, Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed (UF10) Fish and Aquatic LifeBuffalo Lake, Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed (UF10) RecreationBuffalo Lake, Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes Watershed (UF10) Fish Consumption

General Condition

Buffalo Lake North Side Beach was assessed for the 2018 listing cycle; E. coli data sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use. This water was meeting its designated uses and 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

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

Buffalo Lake is located in the Buffalo and Puckaway Lakes watershed which is 225.11 miĀ². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (42%), wetland (22%) and a mix of forest (22%) and other uses (13%). This watershed has 305.16 stream miles, 5,877.75 lake acres and 35,513.76 wetland acres.

Nonpoint Source Characteristics

This watershed is ranked Medium 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

Buffalo Lake North Side Beach is considered a Reservoir 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.