Impaired Water - Badfish Creek (Badfish Creek)
Dane County, Wisconsin
12.31 - 13.18
Water is impaired due to one or more pollutants and associated quality impacts.
Badfish Creek is formed by the confluence of its Oregon and Rutland Branches. Nearly 100 percent of the creek's entire length in Dane County has been ditched, straightened and widened. In contrast, in Rock County, the stream's natural morphology has been preserved. In the 1970s water quality was poor due to the large volume of effluent from MMSD and Oregon's treatment plant. MMSD has improved its treatment capabilities and quality of its effluent; consequently, the quality of water in Badfish Creek has improved. Since 1977 biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), ammonia nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen and suspended solids have decreased while dissolved oxygen levels have increased in Badfish Creek and Oregon Branch over the period of study. Levels of total suspended solids (TSS) tend to increase at the downstream monitoring stations. It is estimated that MMSD and Oregon contribute less than 50 percent of the TSS just below Cooksville. BOD concentrations also increase downstream, indicating polluted runoff from surrounding farmland affects water quality in Badfish Creek. MMSD points to four major improvements which seem to have enhanced water quality since 1983: riprapping three sections of the stream; addition of nitrification processes in the plant, which decreases ammonia discharges to the stream; changing disinfection from chlorine to ultraviolet, which eliminated chlorine and toxic by-products entering the stream; and reduction in levels of suspended solids and BOD in the treatment plant due to increased plant capacity and longer retention times for the effluent. Rock River Water Quality Management Plan, Lower Rock River Appendix. WT-668-2002. South Central Region, WDNR.
Listing Details
Listed For
Fish and Aquatic Life
PCB Contaminated Sediments, PCBs Contaminated Fish Tissue
Current Use
LFF - Limited Forage Fishery
Listing Status
303d Listed
Attainable Use
LFF - Limited Forage Fishery
Designated Use
LFF - Limited Forage Fishery
303(d) ID
Listing Date
Impaired Water Notes
Priority changed from high to low