Fish and Aquatic Life
The Clark County Health Care Center (CCHCC) discharges treated wastewater to the North Fork Popple River. The CCHCC completed a facility upgrade in spring, 1996 to reduce the number of suspended solids violations. The rehabilitation of one wastewater treatment cell in the fall of 1996 has allowed the treatment system to operate optimally. This facility discharges to the North Fork Popple River in spring and fall (Pietz). Macroinvertebrate samples collected in 1990, below the CCHCC discharge, resulted in HBI values indicating some organic loading (WDNR, 1990).
Dorchester discharges to an intermittent tributary to the North Fork Popple River, and is classified in NR104 as a limited forage fishery stream. The Dorchester WWTP upgraded its facility in 1993 and has met permit limits since then, except for one period in June, 1996 (Pietz). Since the plant upgrade occurred in 1993, a water quality standards review should be conducted on the intermittent stream that receives the Dorchester discharge to document any water quality changes.
The upper reaches of the North Fork Popple River may experience large yearly variations in stream flows. It is thought that the river can only support a sport fishery during wet years. Anecdotal evidence indicates that a sport fishery has not existed in the upper reaches since the early 1980's. A fish kill in June 1996 confirmed the existence of a forage fishery in the upper five miles of this river. Runoff from manure spread too close to drainage ditches was determined as the cause of the fish kill. The breakdown of this organic waste robbed the water of all its oxygen. This river has low flow, a low gradient and little in-stream habitat for fish. Cattle commonly graze the streambanks (Talley).
The expansion of HWY 29 resulted in the sale of county land around the Clark County Health Care Center to the Department of Transportation. Wetland mitigation of approximately 100 acres took place on this property. Much of this land was previously in agricultural production. About one mile of streambank is now protected (Strand).
From: Koperksi, Cindy. 1999. Black River Water Quality Management Plan (draft). Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
Author Cynthia Koperski
North Fork of Poplar River T28N, R1W, S8, Surface Acres = 54.4, Miles = 20.4.
The North Fork of Poplar River is a clear, medium hard water stream that flows southward to join the south fork and form the main river. It appears to have a high gradient. Smallmouth bass and panfish constitute the fishery. About 70 percent of the watershed area is cleared for agricultural purposes. Waterfowl and furbearers are present. There are 2.4 miles of public frontage including a small park area. There is an unimproved boat landing at the park. Light boat traffic is possible, but portages are necessary except during high water conditions. Access is available at thirteen road crossings.
From: Klick, Thomas A. and C.W. Threinen, 1965. Surface Water Resources of Clark County: Lake and Stream Classification Project. Wisconsin Conservation Department, Madison, WI.
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.
Wastewater Monitoring or Management
The City of Owen and the Village of Withee should work together to eliminate the inflow and infiltration to their sewer collection system in order to eliminate the need for bypassing raw sewage during rainfall events.
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|
|1754800||North Fork Popple River||103141||Popple River North Fork - Badger Rd||5/15/2012||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
North Fork Popple River is located in the Popple River watershed which is 216.76 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (54.90%), forest (17.50%) and a mix of wetland (14.70%) and other uses (12.80%). This watershed has 386.23 stream miles, 250.90 lake acres and 20,350.85 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Not Ranked for runoff impacts on streams, Not Available for runoff impacts on lakes and Medium for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of Medium. 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.