Watershed - Branch River (MA03)
Branch River Watershed

Details

The Branch River Watershed is located in the northwest corner of Manitowoc County and the southern part of Brown County. The watershed is 69,443 acres in size and includes 186 miles of streams and rivers, 166 acres of lakes and 8943 acres of wetlands. The watershed is dominated by agriculture (78%) and wetlands (13%) and is ranked high for nonpoint source issues affecting streams and groundwater.

Date  2010

Ecological Landscapes for Branch River Watershed

Ecological Landscapes

The Branch River Watershed lies within The Central Lake Michigan Coastal Ecological Landscape which stretches from southern Door County west across Green Bay to the Wolf River drainage, then southward in a narrowing strip along the Lake Michigan shore to central Milwaukee County. Owing to the influence of Lake Michigan in the eastern part of this landscape, summers there are cooler, winters warmer, and precipitation levels greater than at locations farther inland. Dolomites and shales underlie the glacial deposits that blanket virtually all of the Central Lake Michigan Coastal Ecological Landscape. The dolomite Niagara Escarpment is the major bedrock feature, running across the entire landscape from northeast to southwest. Series of dolomite cliffs provide critical habitat for rare terrestrial snails, bats, and specialized plants. The primary glacial landforms are ground moraine, outwash, and lakeplain. The topography is generally rolling where the surface is underlain by ground moraine, variable over areas of outwash, and nearly level where lacustrine deposits are present. Important soils include clays, loams, sands, and gravels. Certain landforms, such as sand spits, clay bluffs, beach and dune complexes, and ridge and swale systems, are associated only with the shorelines of Lake Michigan and Green Bay. Historically, most of this landscape was vegetated with mesic hardwood forest composed primarily of sugar maple, basswood, and beech. Hemlock and white pine were locally important, but hemlock was generally restricted to cool moist sites near Lake Michigan. Areas of poorly drained glacial lakeplain supported wet forests of tamarack, white cedar, black ash, red maple, and elm, while the Wolf and Embarrass Rivers flowed through extensive floodplain forests of silver maple, green ash, and swamp white oak. Emergent marshes and wet meadows were common in and adjacent to lower Green Bay, while Lake Michigan shoreline areas featured beaches, dunes, interdunal wetlands, marshes, and highly diverse ridge and swale vegetation. Small patches of prairie and oak savanna were present in the southwestern portion of this landscape.

Date  2010

Watershed Grants
Grant Details
River Planning Grant
Date
4/1/2000
Waters Involved
Branch River
Status
Complete

Manitowoc County: Friends Of Branch Organizational Development: Manitowoc County proposes to assist the Friends of the Branch River become a self-sustaining river organization. Project deliverables include professional facilitator to establish organization goals and objectives; develop bylaws, incorporation, tax exempt status; develop strategy and plan for sustaining membership; develop a training program; develop educational materials; develop funding mechanisms; create a networking system; and conduct stream monitoring to identify improvement needs and utilize public involvement. A final report of project results will be provided to the DNR both electronically and on paper.


Grant Details
River Planning Grant
Date
7/1/2003
Waters Involved
Branch River
Status
Complete

Friends Of The Branch River, Inc.: Branch River Strategic Plan Phase 1: The Friends of the Branch River proposes to develop a strategic plan for the Friends of the Branch River river enhancement project. The project will take place in two phases. This is phase 1 and will include conducting fish habitat assessments, shoreline erosion surveys, water quality monitoring, and fish/crayfish tissue analysis. Information and education materials will be presented to the public throughout the projects. The strategic plan and power point presentation will be submitted to the Department of Natural Resources after completion of phase 2 of the project.

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.


Grant Details
River Planning Grant
Date
7/1/2003
Waters Involved
Branch River
Status
Complete

Friends Of The Branch River, Inc.: Branch River Strategic Plan Phase 2: The Friends of the Branch River proposes to develop a strategic plan for the Friends of the Branch River river enhancement project. The project will take place in two phases. This is phase 2 and will include conducting water quality monitoring during baseflow and event conditions, holding facilitated strategic planning workshops, training volunteer river monitors, analyzing monitoring results from both phases, and presenting the conclusions to the public through informational meetings and newspaper articles. The strategic plan and power point presentation will be submitted to the Department of Natural Resources after completion of phase 2 of the project.

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.


Grant Details
River Planning Grant
Date
7/1/2011
Waters Involved
Branch River
Status
Complete

Lakeshore Natural Resources Partnership Inc.: Building Capacity For The Friends Of The Branch & Twin Rivers: The Lakeshore Natural Resources Partnership , Inc. proposes to supplement and build on previous work by partners to raise pubic awareness and participation in water stewardship. Specificaly, Lakeshore Natural Resources Partnership will focus on building the capacity and membership of the Friends of the Branch River and Friends of the East and West Twin River groups. Activities for each group include water seminar, an explore and restore river event, river walks, aquatic invasive species control efforts, a paint-out event with the Water's Edge Artists, and several newsletters and newspaper article releases. A strategic plan will be developed for each Friends group. The project elements and deliverables will be completed as described in the project proposal submitted to the Department and dated April 28, 2011.


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.

Grants and Management Projects
Branch River Watershed
Watershed Recommendations
Hire County Aquatic Invasives Coordinator
 
Date
Status
Hire Aquatic Invasives (AIS) County Coordinator - Brown
1/1/2011
Not Proposed
Projects
 
Monitor Fish Tissue
Confirm FCA: IW listed from pre-year 2000 FCA data
Date
Status
71300 name Branch River TMDL ID 614 Start Mile 20.15 End Mile 36.78
11/21/2011
Proposed
 
Monitor Water Quality or Sediment
Branch River TP
Date
Status
Category 5A. 2018 TP Results: May Meet. Station: 10017101. AU: 482183.
1/1/2018
Proposed
 
Branch River WatershedWatershed History Note