Upper Turtle Lake, Hay River Watershed (LC05)
Upper Turtle Lake, Hay River Watershed (LC05)
Upper Turtle Lake (2079800)
427.02 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 Lowland
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.
2020
Poor
 
This lake is impaired
Eutrophication
Unknown Pollutant, Total Phosphorus
 
Barron
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.
Yes

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 Lowland
Shallow lowland 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.
FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
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

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.

Date  1996

Author   Aquatic Biologist

Historical Description

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

Date  1964

Author   Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin

Upper Turtle Lake, Hay River Watershed (LC05) Fish and Aquatic LifeUpper Turtle Lake, Hay River Watershed (LC05) RecreationUpper Turtle Lake, Hay River Watershed (LC05) Fish Consumption

Impaired Waters

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 �A Water Quality Strategy for the Land and Waters of the Red Cedar River Basin.�

Date  2019

Author  Ashley Beranek

Impaired Waters

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.

Date  2017

Author  Ashley Beranek

Impaired Waters

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.

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

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

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.

Natural Community

Upper Turtle Lake is considered a Shallow Lowland 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 lowland lake describes the depth and location of the lake in a watershed. These variables affect the lakes response to watershed variables.

Fish Stocking