Watershed - Morrison Creek (BR05)
Morrison Creek Watershed

Details

Major portions of this watershed were logged in the late-1800's. Dense stands of large pines survived on islands in the extensive wetland areas of this watershed until the lumbermen found ways to access and transport the large logs using both a permanent and temporary rail system (Eswein). Forest and wetland dominate the Morrison Creek watershed landscape. The majority of the Black River State Forest lies within this watershed as does portions of the Winnebago Indian Reservation. Cranberries are the major crop in the Morrison Creek watershed. Because of this, many streams have been impounded to divert water for their operations. Since most of the streams in this watershed historically contained forage fisheries, thermal changes in streams resulting from the discharge of impounded water are not considered a major problem. Only Valentine Creek and a portion of Levis Creek are classified trout streams.

Date  1999

Population, Land Use

The Wazee Area Wastewater Commission came into existence due to the need to serve the Ho-Chunk community and a new prison with sanitary sewer. This new wastewater treatment plant began discharging to the Black River in 1995 and is the only point source discharge in the watershed. Within the Black River Falls State Forest, the Black River Correctional Center discharges to a septic system. The increase in population at the facility has approximately doubled the amount of wastewater to the treatment system than it was designed to handle. The increased flows do not allow the septic system to properly treat the waste. The Black River Correctional Center should work with the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Commerce to determine whether an upgrade or a new wastewater treatment facility is necessary (Pietz).

Date  1999

Ecological Landscapes for Morrison Creek Watershed

Ecological Landscapes

The Central Sand Plains Ecological Landscape, located in central Wisconsin, occurs on a flat, sandy lake plain, and supports agriculture, forestry, recreation, and wildlife management. The Ecological Landscape formed in and around what was once Glacial Lake Wisconsin, which contained glacial meltwater extending over 1.1 million acres at its highest stage. Soils are primarily sandy lake deposits, some with silt-loam loess caps. Sandstone buttes carved by rapid drainage of the glacial lake, or by wave action when they existed as islands in the lake, are distinctive features of this landscape. The historic vegetation of the area included extensive wetlands of many types, including open bogs, shrub swamps, and sedge meadows. Prairies, oak forests, savannas and barrens also occurred in the Ecological Landscape. An area of more mesic forest with white pine and hemlock was found in the northwest portion, including a significant pinery in eastern Jackson County. Today, nearly half of the Ecological Landscape is nonforested, in agriculture and grassland. Most of the historic wetlands were drained early in the 1900s and are now used for vegetable cropping. The forested portion is mostly oak-dominated forest, followed by aspen and pines. A minor portion is maple-basswood forest and lowland hardwoods.

Date  2010

Wildlife and Habitat

Numerous aquatic dependent species of concern have been documented in this watershed. Other species may be present but not yet documented.

Date  1999

Watershed Grants
Grant Details
Aquatic Invasives Control
Date
4/15/2015
Waters Involved
Wazee Lake
Status
Complete

Jackson County: Wazee Phragmites: Jackson Co. proposes to reduce poplulations of invasive Phragmites in wetlands in the vicinity of Wazee Lake. Major project elements to include:a) eradication efforts for a period of 3 years including application of herbacide, manual, and mechanical removal., b) infestation mapping, and c) final report.


Grant Details
Lake Protection Grant
Date
5/15/1995
Waters Involved
Wazee Lake
Status
Complete

Jackson County: Res-Wazee Lake Stormwater Drainage & Fish Habitat Improvement: Jackson County will initiate the first phase of improvements to the Wazee Lake shoreland that will improve water access, expand recreation opportunities, enhance fish habitat, and restore wetland complexes for lake protection.

Further detail is provided on the attached project cost estimate worksheet, Form 8700-244.


Grant Details
Large Scale Lake Planning
Date
5/6/1993
Waters Involved
Trowe Drain
Status
Complete

Jackson County: Wazee Lake Management Planning: Develop a watershed plan to reduce runoff to lake. Develop a design for shoreline stabilization. Develop a plan for beach construction. Develop a plan to improve fish habitat and boat access. Information will be disseminated to the public by videoprograms, public meetings, press releases to newspaper and radio stations.


Grant Details
Large Scale Lake Planning
Date
5/6/1993
Waters Involved
Wazee Lake
Status
Complete

Jackson County: Wazee Lake Management Planning: Develop a watershed plan to reduce runoff to lake. Develop a design for shoreline stabilization. Develop a plan for beach construction. Develop a plan to improve fish habitat and boat access. Information will be disseminated to the public by videoprograms, public meetings, press releases to newspaper and radio stations.


Grant Details
Large Scale Lake Planning
Date
10/1/2002
Waters Involved
Wazee Lake
Status
Complete

Jackson County: Wazee Lake Monitoring: The lake has become extremely popular with the public in the past 10 years and use has quadrupled during this period for swimming, scuba diving and fishing. As use increases, so does the potential for adding additional nutrients to the lake. Many roads at the park are gravel and there is concern that the increased at the park is contributing to sediment loading in the lake.

These factors constitute the primary need for an in-depth water quality monitoring program to assess the public's use of the lake and the effects that the combined uses may have on nutrient loading within the watershed.

A data summary will be submitted by the USGS to Jackson County upon completion of monitoring.
The lake map will be incorporated into the dive-map handout and will be available to all those entering the park. Information will be shared with the Jackson County Board of Supervisors; results will show what impact the protective measures have had on the lake. Information that may be useful to the general public will be shared on the County web site.

The DNR will be provided with both a paper copy and an electronic copy of the final report. Information will be disseminated to the public as described in the grant application.


Monitoring & Projects

Projects including grants, restoration work and studies shown below have occurred in this watershed. Click the links below to read through the text. While these are not an exhaustive list of activities, they provide insight into the management activities happening in this watershed.

Morrison Creek Watershed
Watershed Recommendations
Hire County Aquatic Invasives Coordinator
 
Date
Status
Hire Aquatic Invasives (AIS) County Coordinator - Jackson
1/1/2011
Not Proposed
Projects
 
Monitor Fish Tissue
Confirm FCA: IW listed from pre-year 2000 FCA data
Date
Status
1676700 name Black River, Hwy H To Rock Creek TMDL ID 50 Start Mile 98.14 End Mile 107.12
11/21/2011
Proposed
 
Monitor Fish Tissue
 
Date
Status
Water Division staff should collect fish representative of the population in Town Line Flowage for contaminant testing. (Type B)
1/1/2010
Proposed
 
Monitor and/or Protect Groundwater, Sourcewater
 
Date
Status
WDNR staff should continue to encourage communities to develop wellhead protection plans in the Watershed and the whole basin.
7/1/2010
Proposed
Projects
 
Restore Hydrology, Morphology
 
Date
Status
DNR water program staff should discuss with Jackson County staff the possibility of routing cold water from Lake Wazee to Indian Grave Creek. (Type B)
1/1/2010
Proposed
 
Wastewater Monitoring, Management
 
Date
Status
Water Division staff should work with the Black River Correctional Center to determine if an upgrade or a new wastewater treatment facility is needed. (Type B)
1/1/2010
Proposed
 
Morrison Creek WatershedWatershed History Note

A large portion of the Black River State Forest is located within the Morrison Creek watershed. The area of the Black River State Forest was logged heavily in 1850. Fires repeatedly burned the area until the early 1900's. The Homestead Act made this land available to people seeking farmland. Their dreams of fertile land were not realized and many farmers sold their property to the U.S. Resettlement Administration in the 1930's. The U.S. Forest Service in 1940 made an agreement with the Wisconsin Conservation Department to manage the area for forestry and wildlife purposes. CCC crews were instrumental in providing labor for resource projects. They planted trees and constructed earthen dams to establish flowages for waterfowl. In 1957, the land was granted to the State of Wisconsin and established as a state forest. The Ho-Chunk Sovereign Nation also owns land within this watershed. The tribe officially changed its name from the Wisconsin Winnebago Tribe to the Ho-Chunk Sovereign Nation (meaning People of the Big Voice) in 1994. In 2001 there were 6,159 tribe members. The tribe does not have a formal reservation, but they own 4,602 acres across Wisconsin and Minnesota. The administrative center is in Black River Falls in Jackson County.

Date  2010