PurposeWestern District proposes to monitor select streams to evaluate if they are meeting their full potential as water resources. This project is primarily follow-up to past years of monitoring at streams that have documented issues. The monitoring activities will be completed Western District water resource staff. In addition, water resources staff will be partnering with Eau Claire Fisheries staff to complete this project.
For the last couple years Eau Claire Fisheries and Water Quality staff have been evaluating streams in Eau Claire County to assess the potential of these streams to support salmonid communities. These streams have been stocked annually with feral Young of Year trout and evaluated each year to determine if brook trout carryover and reproduction is occurring. Trout that carry over into a second year indicate that water quality conditions (temperature, dissolved oxygen) and habitat are adequate for some trout carryover but the lack of reproduction in subsequent years may indicate the lack of spawning habitat. Also, low density of carryover trout would suggest habitat conditions are less than optimal. Water Resources staff recommended three of the streams be added to the 2014 impaired waters list for TP and degraded habitat. Another stream is being evaluated for potential 303d listing in 2016. Fisheries has identified other streams in Eau Claire County to assess their potential to support trout. Both programs will collect data in a consistent manner and share results. Streams and sites monitored for this project include: Travis Creek - 2 sites Hay Creek - 2 sites Thompson Valley Creek - 3 sites Fall Creek - 2 sites Diamond Valley Creek - 3 sites. Evaluations at each site will include fish and qualitative habitat surveys, streamflow data collection and continuous temperature monitoring.
ObjectiveThis project supports the impaired waters project category. Monitoring on these streams will provide information that will validate and document impairments. Data collection in these waterbodies will help define the current stream condition, the extent of documented impairments and outline any other water quality parameters.
The Eau Claire County stream assessment portion of the project will continue the evaluation of feral brook trout stocking to determine if carryover and reproduction occurs. The absence of one of both of these life stages would indicate degraded conditions and supports the degraded habitat impairment. Water Resources staff intend to use this data to evaluate the potential of these streams to support trout and demonstrate the need to improve habitat conditions so these streams reach their full potential. Department staff feel these streams have been degraded well before monitoring records have been kept and this monitoring along with Regional Reference sites demonstrate the potential of these streams to support trout. Department staff will continue to demonstrate the potential of these streams and work with Eau Claire County LCD and local partners to implement practices to improve habitat and landuse conditions. Data will also be used to address potential impacts from the growing Frac Sand mining industry in the area. Streams and sites monitored for this project include: Travis Creek - 2 sites Hay Creek - 2 sites Thompson Valley Creek - 3 sites Fall Creek - 2 sites Diamond Valley Creek - 3 sites. Evaluations at each site will include fish and qualitative habitat surveys, streamflow data collection and continuous temperature monitoring.
OutcomeThis project will provide a variety of biological, chemical and/or physical water quality parameters collected to help diagnose potential issues. All of the fieldwork for this project will be completed May through November of 2015. Updates to SWIMS and FH database will be completed during the winter months of FY 2016. Database updates and reports will be generated the following year when all of the data becomes available.
Related ReportsRun Project Summary ReportView Umbrella-ProjectsView Related-Projects
Impaired Water Assessment
WCR_01_CMP15 status 10142016
Hay Creek Assessment
WBIC # 2131900
Anna Mares & Mark Hazuga - WI Department of N