Fish and Aquatic Life
Dunlap Creek is a small tributary to the Wisconsin River. Approximately 3.5 miles of it are classified as Class II trout waters. The creek has been extensively ditched from the end of the trout water to the Wisconsin River. Despite this, the creek still serves as a nursery stream for several warm water fish from the Wisconsin River including northern pike. A rare aquatic species has been found in the creek in past surveys.
The creek flows through several publicly owned and leased lands including the Mazomanie and Blackhawk Units of the Lower Wisconsin Riverway. In addition, there is a large, high quality wetland complex adjacent to the stream. This wetland, however, has been significantly degraded by the presence of purple loosestrife. This exotic, invasive species has dominated the area and continues to spread.
Sedimentation from cultivated fields and grazing are affecting in-stream habitat and impairing the stream's full use. This sub-watershed was selected as a small-scale nonpoint source priority watershed project in 1991. An appraisal monitoring report and a project plan detailing what needs to be done to improve water quality was completed in 1992 or early 1993. The main focus of this project is to reduce soil erosion from upland areas in the Dunlap Creek watershed. Many of the cost-share practices are focused on controlling the formation of gullies or the worsening of existing gullies.
Author Cynthia Koperski
The Roxbury Creek watershed lies mostly in northwest Dane County. A small portion of
it extends into Columbia County. Agricultural predominates, though residential
development has increased due to proximity to Madison. A part of the Mazomanie Unit
of the Lower Wisconsin State Wildlife Area is in the watershed. The only municipal
point source discharger is the Roxbury Sanitary District. The Dunlap Creek subwatershed
above Wisconsin Highway 78 has recently been selected as a small-scale
priority watershed project.
The Dane County portion of this watershed is included in the Dane County Regional
Planning Commission (DCRPC) Dane County Water Quality Plan. That plan should be
consulted for more detailed water resources information and for additional
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Dunlap Creek (Dunlap Hollow Creek) -T9N, R6E, Sec. 31, Surface acres = 7, Length = 9.5 miles, Stream order = I, Gradient = 15.0 ft/mile, Base discharge = 5.8 cfs.
This spring-fed tributary to the Wisconsin River originates in a terminal moraine and has a relatively steep gradient in the upper half and a low gradient in the lower half of the stream. The lower section of the creek was diverted from a northerly course and now flows through a drainage ditch in a southwesterly direction. This drainage ditch runs for more than 4 miles through the Mazomanle Wildlife Area which encompasses extensive wetlands. Fair populations of northern pike and largemouth bass inhabit the lower stretch. The upper half of the stream has good in-stream cover and is classified as
a Class II and III trout fishery. Water quality is good. Some habitat improvement has been made, but improvement and protection of the major springs could benefit the trout population. The substrate in the lower end consists mainly of silt, clay, and hardpan. In the upper reaches the bottom is mainly sand and gravel. A bog is located upstream from Highway 78. Access is available from the Mazomanle Wildlife Area, seven road crossings, and the Wisconsin River.
Fish species: brown trout, central mudmlnnow, northern pike, common carp, blacknose dace, creek chub, white sucker, black bullhead, brook stickleback, mottled sculpln. and largemouth bass.
From: Day Elizabeth A.; Grzebieniak, Gayle P.; Osterby, Kurt M.; and Brynildson, Clifford L., 1985. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Dane County, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
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.
Nine Key Element Plan
Dunlap Creek PWS Plan - Nine Key Element Plan - The Dunlap Creek Priority Watershed Project plan assesses the nonpoint sources of pollution in the Dunlap Creek Watershed and guides the implementation of nonpoint source control measures. These control measures are needed to meet specific water resource objectives for Dunlap Creek and its tributaries.
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
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|1253300||Dunlap Creek||10053254||Dunlap Hollow||4/15/2019||8/22/2021||Map||Data|
|5573283||Unnamed||10046884||Un. Slough (WBIC 5573283 by Dunlap Cr.)||6/9/2010||6/9/2010||Map||Data|
|2153300||South Fork Paint Creek||10016905||Dunlap Creek - Wilkinson Rd||5/30/1991||2/27/2013||Map||Data|
Dunlap Creek is located in the Roxbury Creek watershed which is 71.11 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (40.40%), forest (28.50%) and a mix of wetland (12.80%) and other uses (18.30%). This watershed has 111.73 stream miles, 988.84 lake acres and 4,432.98 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Not Available for runoff impacts on streams, Not Available 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 High Stream for individual Rivers based on runoff problems and the likelihood of success from project implementation.