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Coldwater, Cool-Cold Headwater, Cool-Cold Mainstem
Fish and Aquatic Life
Sand Creek, located in northern Crawford County, flows in a westerly direction for five miles before reaching the Kickapoo River in Bell Center. This stream has a gradient of 44 feet per mile and drains forested hillsides, recreational land, and some agricultural land. Sand Creek is not a classified trout stream.
The most recent survey, conducted in 1978, documented many forage fish species, one brook trout and two brown trout. Flooding and eroding streambanks were contributing to problems with in-stream habitat for trout. A fish and habitat survey should be conducted to determine the existing condition of Sand Creek. This stream would benefit from the purchase of streambank easements from willing sellers and the restoration of in-stream habitat. WDNR records indicate that Sand Creek was last stocked in 1970 with brook trout. Access to Sand Creek is from one road crossing.
Author Cynthia Koperski
Sand Creek (WBIC 1184800) was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new biological (fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scores) and temperature 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.
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|
|1184900||Unnamed||121074||Sand Creek. Unnamed Trib To - Unnamed Trib To Sand Creek||6/20/2003||10/7/2009||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10013739||Sand Creek Stations 1 And 2-1970-Sw 1/4 Se 1/4 Sec. 34-Starts At Sand Creek Rd. Bridge Crossing.||8/8/2012||10/20/2016||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10009081||Sand Creek #2- Farm Crossing On Orrick'S Property||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10032079||Sand Creek - Li-70||5/14/2010||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10039682||Sand Creek at Sand Creek Rd and Windsor Rd||5/15/2012||7/12/2012||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||116079||Sand Creek - Sand Creek||6/20/2003||9/16/2004||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10010775||Sand Creek - Li-70||12/4/2003||9/16/2004||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10013743||Sand Creek Station 4-1978-Sw 1/4 Se 1/4 Sec. 25||Map||Data|
|1184900||Unnamed||10010768||Unnamed Tributary To Sand Creek - Li-8||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10013742||Sand Creek Station 2-1978-Nw 1/4 Sw 1/4 Sec. 35||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10032080||Sand Creek Unnamed Tributary - 20 ft upstream of confluence with Sand Creek||5/14/2010||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10009082||Sand Creek #3- 300 Meters Downstream Of Bill Drive Bridge On Dave Rasen Property||5/14/1997||10/18/2001||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10009084||Sand Creek #4- 1000 Feet Below Sand Creek Rd. Bridge||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10013741||Sand Creek Stations 3 And 4-1970-Ne 1/4 Ne 1/4 Sec. 35||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10031487||Sand Creek at Sand Creek Rd.||10/4/2010||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1184800||Sand Creek||10009080||Sand Creek #1- 300 Meters Downstream Of Hwy 131 Bridge||Map||Data|
Sand Creek is located in the Lower Kickapoo River watershed which is 150.21 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (52.80%), grassland (21.20%) and a mix of agricultural (19.60%) and other uses (6.30%). This watershed has 383.20 stream miles, 387.48 lake acres and 3,662.70 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.This water is ranked Medium Stream for individual Rivers based on runoff problems and the likelihood of success from project implementation.
Sand Creek is considered a Coldwater, Cool-Cold Headwater, Cool-Cold Mainstem 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) Mainstem streams are moderate-to-large but still wadeable perennial streams with cold to cool summer temperatures. Coldwater fishes are common to uncommon, transitional fishes are abundant to common, and warm water fishes are uncommon to absent. Headwater species are common to absent,
mainstem species are abundant to common, and river species are common to absent.
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.