Fish and Aquatic Life
The upper six miles of the stream are classified as Class II and 111 trout stream. Fish kills were
documented in 1977 and 1986. The fish kills occurred after heavy rainfalls and may have been the
result of water containing low levels of dissolved oxygen being flushed from wetlands adjacent the
stream. The Muddy Creek State Wildlife Area encompasses roughly a third of the stream miles and
contains many wetlands.
The Elk Mound wastewater treatment plant discharges to a natural wetland that drains into
Muddy Creek. Due to problems meeting ammonia standards in the receiving water, the plant was
upgraded in 1993 to meet more restrictive limits. Sludge illegally discharged from the old plant into
adjacent wetlands was removed in 1993. The innovative and cooperative approach used to remove
the sludge was an economic and environmental success (LaLiberte).
Author Aquatic Biologist
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|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||10009292||Muddy Creek along CTH E and 810th St||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||10009291||Muddy Creek 6 - 830th St.||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||10011373||Muddy Creek Remap 161-Xb||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||173201||Muddy Creek - Tn Road Sec 8 T28n R11w||1/20/1981||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||173248||Muddy Creek - Muddy Creek||6/9/2003||6/9/2003||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||10009289||Muddy Creek 5 - 640th Ave.||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||173249||Muddy Creek - (Bridge)||6/9/2003||10/9/2003||Map||Data|
|2118300||Muddy Creek||10009290||Muddy Creek 7 - Hwy E||Map||Data|
Muddy Creek is located in the Muddy and Elk Creeks watershed which is 237.94 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (48.60%), forest (21.80%) and a mix of grassland (16.80%) and other uses (12.80%). This watershed has 313.30 stream miles, 590.92 lake acres and 11,999.60 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, High 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.