Fish and Aquatic Life
Brewer Creek, a tributary to the Lemonweir above Decorah Lake, is a Class I trout stream for 6.7 of its nine miles. The Class I trout waters are also considered Exceptional Resource Waters (ERW). Cattle access to the stream, which leads to bank erosion, and runoff from a barnyard are causing water quality and in-stream habitat problems. Brewer Creek has been ranked high as a small-scale nonpoint source priority watershed reduction project.
Author Cynthia Koperski
Brewer Creek, a tributary to the Lemoniweir above Decorah Lake, is a Class I trout
stream for 6-7 of its nine miles (WDNR, 1980). The Class I trout waters are also
considered exceptional resource waters under the state antidegradation rules. Cattle
access to the stream, which leads to bank erosion, and runoff from a barnyard are
causing water qelality and in-stream habitat problems (Ironside. 1991). An illegal
dredging of an unnamed tributary in 1988 (WDNR, 1991) also increased sedimentation
to the stream.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
This headwaters portion of Brewer Creek was evaluated for phosphorus in 2014 and values were found to be too high. This water is part of the Wisconsin River TMDL.
Author Ashley Beranek
The 2018 assessments of Brewer Creek (miles 0-6.7) showed continued biological impairment; new fish sample data exceeded the 2018 WisCALM listing criteria for the Fish and Aquatic Life use (i.e. at least one fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) average scored in the poor condition category). Based on the most updated information, no change in the existing impaired waters listing was needed.
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|
|1305000||Brewer Creek||10049410||Brewer Creek at Hoffman Road||5/6/2017||5/6/2017||Map||Data|
Brewer Creek is located in the Lower Lemonweir River watershed which is 209.62 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (36.20%), agricultural (31%) and a mix of wetland (22.30%) and other uses (10.60%). This watershed has 384.35 stream miles, 558.61 lake acres and 17,722.41 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, Low 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.This water is ranked High Stream for individual Rivers based on runoff problems and the likelihood of success from project implementation.