Fish and Aquatic Life
Mud Creek is a ditched tributary to Koshkonong Creek. Historically, the creek wove through interconnected wetlands, some supporting northern pike spawning. Many of these wetlands have been drained for agriculture. Agricultural polluted runoff is the primary threat to existing water quality. Surveys in 1984 and 1988 show the stream receives an abundant silt load from agricultural fields, reducing aquatic and fish habitat. The stream also exhibits extreme flow fluctuations after major storms. The stream was classified as an intermediate surface water, supporting a limited forage fishery, but was reclassified as a warm water forage fishery in 1988, indicating water quality improvement.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Mud Creek (Village of Deerfleld) T7N, RI2E, Sec. 23, Surface acres = 2.2, Length = 9 miles, Stream order = II, Gradient = 6.0 ft/mile, Base discharge = 0.1 cfs.
Mud Creek is a ditched drainage stream in the eastern part of the county, tributary to Koshkonong Creek. The watershed once consisted of many interconnected wetlands, but in the early 1900's, farmers organized to straighten the stream and drain the wetlands. The watershed is now primarily agricultural (Johnson 1976). Ground water recruitment is low, causing fluctuations in flow and water levels. Water quality is average. The Village of Deerfield discharges treated wastewater and storm sewer effluent to Mud Creek through a small trlbutory. Agricultural runoff and siltation also contribute to pollution in the stream. Mud Creek is inhabited primarily by forage species. In the past, northern pike were observed moving up Mud Creek to spawn in the wetlands adjoining the stream (Poff and Threlnen 1962), but it is not known if this still occurs. The fishery could be improved through better soil conservation practices in the watershed and improvement in the quality of discharge from the Deerfield treatment plant. Access is avaIlable at eight road crossings and through Koshkonong Oreek.
FIsh species: northern pike, central mudminnow, common carp, brassy minnow, blackchin and blacknose shiner, northern redbelly dace, bluntnose and fathead minnow, creek chub, and fantail and Johnny darter.
From: Day, Elizabeth A.; Grzebieniak, Gayle P.; Osterby, Kurt M.; and Brynildson, Clifford L., 1985. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Dane County. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Mud Creek was evaluated in the 2022 cycle: phosphorus levels were above listing thresholds as outlined in 2022 WisCALM. This stream was added to the 2022 Impaired Waters List.
Author Ashley Beranek
Wisconsin has over 84,000 miles of streams, 15,000 lakes and milllions of acres of wetlands. Assessing the condition of this vast amount of water is challenging. The state's water monitoring program uses a media-based, cross-program approach to analyze water condition. An updated monitoring strategy (2015-2020) is now available. Compliance with Clean Water Act fishable, swimmable standards are located in the Executive Summary of Water Condition in 2018. See also the 'monitoring and projects' tab.
Wisconsin's Water Quality Standards provide qualitative and quantitative goals for waters that are protective of Fishable, Swimmable conditions [Learn more]. Waters that do not meet water quality standards are considered impaired and restoration actions are planned and carried out until the water is once again fishable and swimmable
Management goals can include creation or implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load analysis, a Nine Key Element Plan, or other restoration work, education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below online.
Monitoring the condition of a river, stream, or lake includes gathering physical, chemical, biological, and habitat data. Comprehensive studies often gather all these parameters in great detail, while lighter assessment events will involve sampling physical, chemical and biological data such as macroinvertebrates. Aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish communities integrate watershed or catchment condition, providing great insight into overall ecosystem health. Chemical and habitat parameters tell researchers more about human induced problems including contaminated runoff, point source dischargers, or habitat issues that foster or limit the potential of aquatic communities to thrive in a given area. Wisconsin's Water Monitoring Strategy was recenty updated.
Grants and Management Projects
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|5035959||Unnamed||10047425||Wetland [ID 13423694203]||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10047425||Wetland [ID 13423694203]||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10045031||Mud Creek at Evergreen Drive||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10046988||Mud Creek at STH 73||1/1/2015||10/24/2016||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10010963||Mud Creek - Mud Creek At Hilcrest Rd||10/28/2004||7/9/2022||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||133032||Mud Creek at confluence w/ un. trib Deerfield||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10010962||Mud Creek - Mud Creek At London Road||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||133029||Mud Creek - Above Deerfield Trib||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||133030||Mud Creek - Below Deerfield Trib||Map||Data|
|810300||Mud Creek||10031596||Mud Creek at STH 12||10/25/2010||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
Mud Creek is located in the Upper Koshkonong Creek watershed which is 104.25 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (58.60%), grassland (11.80%) and a mix of wetland (9.90%) and other uses (19.60%). This watershed has 176.17 stream miles, 157.76 lake acres and 6,145.17 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Medium for runoff impacts on lakes and High for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of High. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.However, all waters are affected by diffuse pollutant sources regardless of initial water quality. Applications for specific runoff projects under state or county grant programs may be pursued. For more information, go to surface water program grants.