Fish and Aquatic Life
Rock River Water Quality Management Plan, Lower Rock River Appendix. WT-668-2002. South Central Region, WDNR.
Gibbs Creek, a small seepage fed stream approximately 4 miles long, flows north from its headwaters in Little Gibbs Lake, through Gibbs Lake, to the Yahara River. The creek has a surface area of approximately 2 acres and a gradient of 21.4 feet/mile. Adjoining the creek is a fresh meadow wetland of 155 acres where sandhill crane and other waterfowl have been observed. Primary threats to water quality are high soil erosion rates from agricultural runoff, streambank erosion and barnyard runoff from the 26 barnyards in the Gibbs Creek sub-watershed. The average soil erosion rate for this area is about 6 tons/acre/year, with 44 percent of the cropland eroding above the Soil Conservation Service acceptable rate (tolerable) for soil loss. Streambank erosion is prevalent and could be addressed by improved management practices. The drainage of nearby wetlands also poses a threat. Many unnamed springs in the watershed have been ponded, which, when natural, help maintain the creek's flow.
The fishery is dominated by forage species, which often migrate between Gibbs and Little Gibbs Lakes. Commonly found fish species in the creek include central mudminnow, common carp, fathead minnow, creek chub, white sucker, black bullhead, brook stickleback, and bluegill.
Author Aquatic Biologist
From: Ball, Joseph R., and Ronald J. Poff, Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Rock County, Department of Natural Resources, 1970.
Surface Acres = 2.12, Miles = 3.5 Gradient = 21.4 feet per mile.
A small seepage fed stream flowing northward from Gibbs Lake to the Yahara River. The fishery is dominated by forage species although northern pike have been observed in periods of above normal flow. Adjoining fresh meadow wetland totals 155 acres and waterfowl are commonly observed. Navigable water access is possible from the Yahara River and two town roads which cross the stream.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
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|
|798800||Gibbs Creek||10010432||Gibbs Creek - Gibbs Creek 50m Upstream Cty M||11/7/2003||11/7/2003||Map||Data|
|798800||Gibbs Creek||10010932||Gibbs Creek - Gibbs Creek At Cty M||Map||Data|
|798800||Gibbs Creek||10045236||Phragmites Occurrence - Gibbs Lake||Map||Data|
|799200||Gibbs Lake||10045237||Phragmites Occurrence - Gibbs Lake||Map||Data|
|799200||Gibbs Lake||10045236||Phragmites Occurrence - Gibbs Lake||Map||Data|
|798800||Gibbs Creek||10045237||Phragmites Occurrence - Gibbs Lake||Map||Data|
Gibbs Creek is located in the Yahara River and Lake Kegonsa watershed which is 126.33 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (54.90%), grassland (10.70%) and a mix of wetland (10.30%) and other uses (24.20%). This watershed has 145.73 stream miles, 3,600.04 lake acres and 6,832.19 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.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.