North Branch Duck Creek, Duck Creek and Rocky Run Watershed (LW20)
North Branch Duck Creek, Duck Creek and Rocky Run Watershed (LW20)
North Br Duck Creek (1267500)
4.06 Miles
20.56 - 24.62
Natural Community
Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model results that use predicted flow and temperature based on landscape features and related assumptions. Ranges of flow and temperature associated with specific aquatic life communities (fish, macroinvertebrates) help biologists identify appropriate resource management goals. Wisconsin Natural Communities.
Coldwater, Macroinvertebrate
Year Last Monitored
This is the most recent date of monitoring data stored in SWIMS. Additional surveys for fish and habitat may be available subsequent to this date.
2015
Fair
 
Columbia
Trout Water 
Trout Waters are represented by Class I, Class II or Class III waters. These classes have specific ecological characteristics and management actions associated with them. For more information regarding Trout Classifications, see the Fisheries Trout Class Webpages.
No
Outstanding or Exceptional 
Wisconsin has designated many of the state's highest quality waters as Outstanding Resource Waters (ORWs) or Exceptional Resource Waters (ERWs). Waters designated as ORW or ERW are surface waters which provide outstanding recreational opportunities, support valuable fisheries and wildlife habitat, have good water quality, and are not significantly impacted by human activities. ORW and ERW status identifies waters that the State of Wisconsin has determined warrant additional protection from the effects of pollution. These designations are intended to meet federal Clean Water Act obligations requiring Wisconsin to adopt an 'antidegradation' policy that is designed to prevent any lowering of water quality - especially in those waters having significant ecological or cultural value.
No
Impaired Water 
A water is polluted or 'impaired' if it does not support full use by humans, wildlife, fish and other aquatic life and it is shown that one or more of the pollutant criteria are not met.
No

Fish and Aquatic Life

Current Use
The use the water currently supports. This is not a designation or classification; it is based on the current condition of the water. Information in this column is not designed for, and should not be used for, regulatory purposes.
FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
Attainable Use
The use that the investigator believes the water could achieve through managing "controllable" sources. Beaver dams, hydroelectric dams, low gradient streams, and naturally occurring low flows are generally not considered controllable. The attainable use may be the same as the current use or it may be higher.
WWFF
Streams capable of supporting a warm waterdependent forage fishery. Representative aquatic life communities associated with these waters generally require cool or warm temperatures and concentrations of dissolved oxygen that do not drop below 5 mg/L.
Designated Use
This is the water classification legally recognized by NR102 and NR104, Wis. Adm. Code. The classification determines water quality criteria and effluent limits. Waters obtain designated uses through classification procedures.
Default FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - Default Waters do not have a specific use designation subcategory but are considered fishable, swimmable waters.

Overview

The North Branch of Duck Creek rises in northeastern Columbia County. Tributaries to the
stream have been extensively modified. The stream does not support a balanced sport fishery
and bank and adjacent farm field erosion are thought to be problems. Manure storage and
management are also an issue of concern. The North Branch Duck Creek receives point
source discharges from Del Monte Foods and the Cambria wastewater treatment plant. A
small impoundment has been constructed on the stream in Cambria to create Lake Tarrant.

Date  2002

Author  Cynthia Koperski

Historical Description

The North Branch of Duck Creek rises in northeastern Columbia County. The stream is
considered full fish and aquatic life waters, but it doesn't support a balanced sport
fishery (WDNR, 1991). Bank and adjacent farm field erosion are thought to be the
problem. Manure storage and management are also a problem in the stream's drainage
(WDNR, 1991). Managment of process wastewater from a local canning facility
may be causing problems (WDNR, 1991, Heixn, 1992)

Date  1994

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Historical Description

Duck Creek, North Branch T12N, R10E, Section 15, Surface Acres = 68.1, Miles = 23.4, Gradient = 7.1 feet per mile.
A meandering stream which originates above Tarrant Lake at Cambria
and receives numerous ditched tributaries along its course to the Wyocena Millpond.
Pollution is a continuing problem for this stream. It has reduced the fishery to one
of bullheads, carp, suckers and forage species which nearly every year experiences
pollution-caused mortalities. Access is possible from several town roads. About
2,427 acres of wetland adjoin the stream.

From: Poff, Ronald J. and C.W. Threinen, 1965. Surface Water Resources of Columbia County:
Lake and Stream Classification Project. Wisconsin Conservation Department, Madison, WI.

Date  1965

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

North Branch Duck Creek, Duck Creek and Rocky Run Watershed (LW20) Fish and Aquatic LifeNorth Branch Duck Creek, Duck Creek and Rocky Run Watershed (LW20) RecreationNorth Branch Duck Creek, Duck Creek and Rocky Run Watershed (LW20) Fish Consumption

Impaired Waters

The 2018 assessments of the North Branch Duck Creek (miles 0-20.6) showed continued impairment by phosphorus; new total phosphorus sample data overwhelmingly exceeded the 2018 WisCALM listing criteria for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. However, available biological data did not indicate impairment (i.e. no macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scored in the "poor" condition category). Based on the most updated information, no change in the existing impaired waters listing was needed.

Date  2017

Author  Ashley Beranek

Impaired Waters

The North Branch of Duck Creek (1267500), from the mouth to Cambria, was placed on the impaired waters list in 2014 for total phosphorus. The 2016 assessments showed continued impairment by phosphorus; total phosphorus sample data overwhelmingly exceeded 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use, however, available biological data do not indicate impairment (i.e. no macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scored in the "poor" condition category). Based on the most updated information, no change in existing impaired waters listing is needed.

Date  2015

Author  Aaron Larson

Condition

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.

Reports

Recommendations

Restore Wetlands
Restore Wetlands

Management Goals

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

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

Monitoring Projects

Watershed Characteristics

North Branch Duck Creek is located in the Duck Creek and Rocky Run watershed which is 140.89 miĀ². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (43.10%), wetland (19.90%) and a mix of forest (18.40%) and other uses (18.60%). This watershed has 232.25 stream miles, 1,895.92 lake acres and 16,023.66 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.

Natural Community

North Br Duck Creek is considered a Coldwater, Macroinvertebrate 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.