Fish and Aquatic Life
Sand Lake Coulee Creek drains the area east of the town of Midway and Onalaska, then normally infiltrates the ground near HWY 53/35. Further downstream, the flow resumes primarily due to groundwater inputs. Sand Lake Coulee Creek frequently floods roads and dwellings. Rapid urbanization of this sub-watershed contributes to the flooding problem by increasing stormwater runoff volumes (Masterson).
A warm water forage fishery is assumed to exist in Sand Lake Coulee Creek. Sedimentation and increased runoff volumes have caused this stream to flood frequently. The sediment load from this sub-watershed (8 square miles) is estimated at approximately 4,470 tons per year, or 560 tons/sq. mile/year. The town of Midway is bordered by Halfway Creek and Sand Lake Coulee Creek and subsequently experiences frequent flooding events (Vierbicher).
From: Koperksi, Cindy. 1999. Black River Water Quality Management Plan (draft). Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
Author Cynthia Koperski
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
|Project Name (Click for Details)||Year Started|
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
Unnamed is located in the Lower Black River watershed which is 189.82 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (42%), agricultural (20.30%) and a mix of wetland (13.80%) and other uses (23.70%). This watershed has 383.70 stream miles, 1,042.10 lake acres and 17,676.19 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Not Available for runoff impacts on streams, Not Available 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.