Fish and Aquatic Life
Thorn Lake, in the South Branch Little Wolf River Watershed, is a 12.03 acre lake that falls in Portage County. This lake is managed for fishing and swimming and is currently not considered impaired.
Author Aquatic Biologist
A soft water lake located three miles southeast of Amherst. Seepage and springs serve as the water source. The outlet, Sannes Creek, is small and there is no inlet. The muck bottom is covered with dense aquatic vegetation near shore. The fishery consists of largemouth bass, perch, and bluegills. The panfish are reported to be slow growing. Wildlife use of the area, especially deer, is heavy. Muskrats and migrating waterfowl also utilize the lake. One trailer house and one home are the only developments. The lake is private in that it does not have a public access. Source: 1972, Surface Water Resources of Portage County Thorn Lake, T23N, R10E, Section 36, Surface Acres-14.5, S.D.F.- 1.30, Maximum Depth-25 feet
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|
|277200||Thorn Lake||10005128||Thorn Lake||7/27/1999||10/3/2012||Map||Data|
Thorn Lake is located in the South Branch Little Wolf River watershed which is 160.29 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (42.40%), agricultural (23%) and a mix of wetland (18.40%) and other uses (16.10%). This watershed has 166.00 stream miles, 2,070.64 lake acres and 19,091.22 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Low 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.