PurposeBlack Earth Creek monitoring and analysis to determine the impact of agricultural runoff; contract with Capital Area Regional Planning Commission.
ObjectiveThis project is a key component of a water quality monitoring and planning project designed to determine the impact that agricultural runoff is having on Black Earth Creek. The project includes a cooperative monitoring project that involves Dane County LCD, USGS, WDNR Fisheries, CARPC, WDNR Watershed Management, and support from Partner Organizations such as the Black Earth Creek Watershed Association.
The principal needs that the monitoring will address include identification of water chemistry conditions that may be limiting trout populations. A determination will be made regarding the feasibility of establishing an alert system that would use real-time water chemistry parameters to indicate when stream conditions may potentially induce a fish kill. This alert system would notify the WDNR and other organizations to activate management plans to reduce the impact on the fisheries resource.
This project funds collection and analysis of water quality data sondes at two locations along BEC to help identify areas of water chemistry changes. These sites would use regressions to estimate the discharge (non-published) between the site locations and the active stream gages located on BEC. Manual EWI samples will be collected during base flow and periods of storm runoff. These samples will be used in the development of the regression analyses to predict real-time constituent concentrations from the water quality sonde data and water quality samples.
The funds are intended to be used for equipment, gage stations, and analysis by USGS. The results of this work will be used in a subsequent Phase two effort, to be conducted four to six years in the future, to conduct comprehensive watershed planning, including all land uses in the watershed with the goal of preserving and restoring a healthy aquatic ecosystem for Black Earth Creek. This is a key component of areawide water resources management planning for the area. The information from the current project will be tied in with other ground and surface water modeling work conducted in the watershed by the USGS, and used to estimate pollutant loading from specific land uses in the watershed, set goals, identify load reductions and establish habitat protection measures and strategies as part of an overall comprehensive watershed management plan supported and implemented by all the various stakeholders and groups in the watershed.
OutcomeProject Deliverables: Project report with recommended alternatives including monitoring data and analysis results
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