Little Twin Lake, Big Green Lake Watershed (UF07)
Little Twin Lake, Big Green Lake Watershed (UF07)
Little Twin Lake (146400)
25.21 Acres
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.
Shallow Headwater
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.
This lake is impaired
Excess Algal Growth, Eutrophication
Total Phosphorus
Green Lake
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.
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.
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.

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.
Shallow Headwater
Shallow headwater lake describes the depth and location of the lake in a watershed. These variables affect the lakes response to watershed variables.
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.
Aquatic Life
Waters that support fish and aquatic life communities (healthy biological communities).
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.


Little Twin Lake, in the Big Green Lake Watershed, is a 25.20 acre lake that falls in Green Lake County. This lake is managed for fishing and swimming and is currently considered impaired.

Date  2022

Author  Ashley Beranek

Historical Description

Source: 1971, Surface Water Resources of Green Lake County Little Twin Lake, T-15-N, R-13-E, Section 5 Surface Acres = 33.2; S.D.F. = 2.50 Maximum Depth = 11 feet.

Little Twin Lake is located a short distance east of Big Twin and connected to it by a dug channel. An outlet, Hill Creek, drains both lakes during peak runoff periods, but dries up in late summer. A small dam and fish barrier is constructed on the outlet to prevent carp from returning from Big Green Lake. During 1963, Little Twin was chemically treated to remove a large carp population. Bottom materials consist mostly of muck with some sand also present. The major importance of this lake is the spawning habitat provided for the fish from Big Twin. In mid to late summer the lake becomes very weedy prohibiting most recreational endeavors. The fishery is the same as in Big Twin; ducks, geese, and muskrats use the lake heavily. The only means of public access is by the navigable channel from Big Twin.

Date  1971

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Little Twin Lake, Big Green Lake Watershed (UF07) Fish and Aquatic LifeLittle Twin Lake, Big Green Lake Watershed (UF07) RecreationLittle Twin Lake, Big Green Lake Watershed (UF07) Fish Consumption

Impaired Waters

Little Twin Lake was evaluated in the 2022 cycle: phosphorus levels were above listing thresholds as outlined in 2022 WisCALM. This lake was added to the 2022 Impaired Waters List.

Date  2022

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.



Shoreland Monitoring, Assessment, Inventory
Green Lake County will conduct a land use and environmental resource inventory of the watershed surrounding Green Lake, Little Green Lake, and Lake Puckaway. The information from the study will be used to update the existing zoning and shoreland protection ordinances and to assess the need for a storm water management ordinance in the County, the stormwater management ordinance, if its need is determined, will be written

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 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

Little Twin Lake is located in the Big Green Lake watershed which is 107.31 miĀ². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (54.10%), open (12%) and a mix of grassland (10.10%) and other uses (23.70%). This watershed has 141.08 stream miles, 655.29 lake acres and 5,102.67 wetland acres.

Nonpoint Source Characteristics

This watershed is ranked Not Available 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.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

Little Twin Lake is considered a Shallow Headwater 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.

Shallow headwater lake describes the depth and location of the lake in a watershed. These variables affect the lakes response to watershed variables.