Fish and Aquatic Life
This lake is a 438-acre drainage lake about two miles east of the community of Turtle Lake and
immediately upstream of Lower Turtle Lake. A volunteer recently started collecting water clarity
data on Upper Turtle Lake but current water quality data is lacking.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Source: 1964, Surface Water Resources of Barron County Upper Turtle Lake T34N, R14W, Sections 16, 21, 22
A hard water drainage lake on the headwaters of Turtle Creek. The fish populations include northern pike, walleyes, largemouth bass, perch, bluegills, black crappies, rock bass, pumpkinseeds, bullheads, white suckers, carp and several species of minnows. The lakeshore is mostly open farmland with some upland hardwood and white pine. One hundred and ten acres of wetlands provide habitat for muskrats, nesting puddle ducks, mergansers, coot and loon. Canada geese also use the lake occasionally during migratory seasons. The lake has one resort, one boat livery and 53 cottages and homes. The total amount of public frontage is 0.03 miles.
Surface Acres = 423.5, S.D.F. = 2.34, Maximum Depth = 25 feet
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Upper Turtle Lake was recently evaluated during the ten-year period of 2009 through 2018 for results that were reported to the USEPA for the 2020 Clean Water Act condition report. The waterbody is considered impaired, or in poor condition for designated uses which include the quality of fish and aquatic life, recreational use, and public health and welfare (fish consumption and related). Pollutants or problems encountered during sampling (impairments) are determined based on water quality standards outlined in Wisconsin 2020 Consolidated Assessment and Listing Methodology (WisCALM). Assessment results show water conditions that are potentially harmful for Aquatic Life use due to values for total phosphorus and chlorophyll that fall into the range expected for an aquatic community in poor health, therefore this water is listed as impaired.
Assessment results during the 2020 listing cycle show continued impairment. Total phosphorus and chlorophyll levels were too high for both Recreation use and Aquatic Life use according to 2020 WisCALM standards. Based on the most updated information, eutrophication replaced the previous unknown impairment. The lake was changed to a category 5W water because it is covered by the DNR approved watershed restoration plan ï¿½A Water Quality Strategy for the Land and Waters of the Red Cedar River Basin.ï¿½
Author Ashley Beranek
Upper Turtle Lake (WBIC 2079800) was placed on the impaired waters list for excess algal growth in 2014. This water was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new total phosphorus sample data nearly exceeded 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use and Fish and Aquatic Life use; chlorophyll-a sample data clearly exceeded the REC use thresholds, and only nearly exceeded the FAL use thresholds. The 'Unknown Pollutant' was proposed for deletion and a Total Phosphorus listing is proposed.
Author Ashley Beranek
Upper Turtle Lake (2079800) was placed on the impaired waters list for excess algal growth in 2014. The 2016 assessments showed continued excess algal growth; chlorophyll sample data exceed 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use, however, total phosphorus did not exceed REC thresholds. Total phosphorus and chlorophyll data were clearly below Fish and Aquatic Life listing thresholds. Based on the most updated information, no change in existing impaired waters listing is needed.
Author Aaron Larson
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
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||10018111||Upper Turtle Lake -- Access off Hwy 8||6/18/2005||7/7/2019||Map||Data|
|5006185||Unnamed||10030732||Upper Turtle Lake - West Trib Upper ||5/9/2010||9/10/2014||Map||Data|
|2078300||Turtle Creek||10030731||Upper Turtle Lake - North Trib Upper||5/8/2010||6/26/2014||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||10031795||Upper Turtle Lake - South Basin||5/8/2010||6/26/2014||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||10019657||Upper Turtle Lake -- Access off 3 1/2 St and Teal Rd||6/21/2007||9/2/2020||Map||Data|
|2078300||Turtle Creek||10019657||Upper Turtle Lake -- Access off 3 1/2 St and Teal Rd||6/21/2007||9/2/2020||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||033061||Turtle Lake - Ampi Turtle Lake||4/24/1979||6/26/2014||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||033175||Upper Turtle Lake - Deep Hole||6/22/1994||9/26/2020||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||10000751||Upper Turtle Lake||9/5/2000||6/14/2018||Map||Data|
|2079800||Upper Turtle Lake||10030730||Upper Turtle Lake - North Basin Upper||5/8/2010||8/8/2016||Map||Data|
Upper Turtle Lake is located in the Hay River watershed which is 289.60 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (38%), agricultural (30.20%) and a mix of grassland (20.60%) and other uses (11.20%). This watershed has 516.98 stream miles, 2,647.38 lake acres and 15,179.56 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.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.