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Coldwater, Cool-Cold Headwater
Fish and Aquatic Life
Baker Creek, located in northeast Crawford County, flows in a northwesterly direction for 2.4
miles before reaching the Kickapoo River in Soldiers Grove. This stream has a gradient of 44
feet per mile and drains forested hillsides and agricultural valleys as well as a small portion of
Soldiers Grove. Baker Creek is a Class II trout stream for its entire length.
The most recent survey, conducted in 1978, documented brown trout and numerous forage
fish species as well as a few northern pike. At the time, the stream bottom consisted of
gravel, cobble and boulders with lesser amounts of sand and silt. In-stream cover consisted of
undercut banks, boulders and woody debris. A fish and habitat survey should be conducted to
determine the existing condition of Baker Creek. WDNR records indicate Baker Creek has
not been stocked. Access to Baker Creek is from a park in Soldiers Grove and four road
From: Ripp, Coreen, Koperski, Cindy and Folstad, Jason. 2002. The State of the Lower Wisconsin River Basin. PUBL WT-559-2002. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
Author Cynthia Koperski
Baker Creek was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new biological (fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scores) sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water was meeting this designated use and was not considered impaired.
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.
Citizen-Based Stream Monitoring
Collect chemical, physical, and/or biological water quality data to assess the current overall stream health. The data can inform management decisions and may be used to identify impaired waters for biennial lists.
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|
|1186900||Baker Creek||123019||Baker Creek - Sth 61 Nw Sec 32 T11r3w||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10013602||Baker Creek Station 1-200 Ft. Upstream From Confluence With Kickapoo River||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10012463||Baker Creek Under East Side Of Pedestrian Bridge West Of Highway 61 Bridge||5/14/1997||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10030825||Baker Creek (Station 2) 200ft DS of Hwy 61||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10015501||Baker Creek Station 1 - Bridge On Us Hwy 61||5/14/1979||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10013603||Baker Creek Station 2-Se1/4 Sw1/4 Of Sec. 32||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10032696||Baker Creek at mouth Soldiers Grove||Map||Data|
|1186900||Baker Creek||10013604||Baker Creek Station 3-300 Ft. Down Stream From Old Town Road Crossing(Ush 61)||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
Baker Creek is located in the Reads and Tainter Creeks watershed which is 135.69 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (47.20%), agricultural (24%) and a mix of grassland (23.30%) and other uses (5.50%). This watershed has 339.00 stream miles, 221.66 lake acres and 1,867.13 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Not Ranked 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.
Baker Creek is considered a Coldwater, Cool-Cold Headwater under the state's Natural Community Determinations.
Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model resultsand DNR staff valiation processes that confirm or update predicted conditions based on flow and temperature modeling from historic and current landscape features and related variables. Predicated flow and temperatures for waters are associated predicated fish assemblages (communities). Biologists evaluate the model results against current survey data to determine if the modeled results are corect and whether biological indicators show water quaity degradation. This analysis is a core component of the state's resource management framework. Wisconsin's Riverine Natural Communities.
Cool (Cold-Transition) Headwaters are small, usually perennial streams with cold to cool summer temperatures. Coldwater fishes are common to uncommon (<10 per 100 m), transitional fishes are abundant to common, and warm water fishes are uncommon to absent. Headwater species are abundant to common, mainstem species are common to absent, and river species are absent.