Fish and Aquatic Life
This stream flows easterly into the Sugar River. Managed for forage fish. This stream is used principally for drainage of large expanses of wetland partially converted to farmland. Accessible through a public hunting grounds. Eleven acres of marsh still exist on the stream. Surface Acres= 3.1, Miles= 4.2, Gradient= 20.2' per mile
From: Poff, Ronald J., and C.W. Threinen, Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Green County, Wisconsin Conservation Department, Madison I, 1961.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Most of this sluggish stream has been ditched to drain a large wetland area west of the Sugar River. An unnamed tributary (also ditched) enters the stream in Section 10. Several springs in a small area of upland form the headwaters of OK Creek. The bottom in this portion consists of sand and muck with a few small gravel runs. The lower end of the stream flows through a wet, silt loam river bench which has been converted to cropland. The water is turbid and the bottom is composed of silt and muck. Grass, sedges and a few trees provide adequate bank cover.
Surface Acres = 3.0, Length = 4.2 Miles, Gradient = 15 ft./mi., Base Discharge = 2.7 cu. ft./sec.
Bush, D.M., R. Cornelius, D. Engle, and C.L. Brynildson. 1980. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Green County, 2nd Edition. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, Wisconsin.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Much of this stream has been ditched to drain a large wetland area west of the Sugar River. The water is turbid even in times of low flow (Amrhein, personal obs). It has not been monitored recently.
Author Aquatic Biologist
The 2018 assessments of Ok Creek showed continued impairment by phosphorus; new total phosphorus sample data exceeded the 2018 WisCALM listing criteria for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. However, there was no new available biological data to observe further biological impairment (i.e. this water was listed in previous water evaluation cycles, but no new macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scores were available). Based on the most updated information, no change in the existing impaired waters listing was needed.
Author Ashley Beranek
Ok Creek (877200) was assessed during the 2016 listing cycle; total phosphorus sample data exceed 2016 WisCALM listing criteria for the Fish and Aquatic Life use and biological impairment was observed (i.e. at least one macroinvertebrate or fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scored in the poor condition category). The regional biologist recommends this water for listing for degraded habitat and Sediment/Total Suspended Solids.
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.
Monitor or Propose 303(d) Listing
The entire length of OK Creek should be added to the state?s 303(d) list of impaired waters due to habitat degradation caused by excessive sediment deposition and channel straightening. OK Creek should also be added to the impaired waters list for total phosphorus as concentrations exceed the WisCALM (WDNR, 2018) guidance.The department should review land use and nutrient management efforts in this sub-watershed to determine if any improvements can be made to reduce phosphorus delivery to the stream.
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|
|877200||Ok Creek||10009520||Ok Creek Upstream Of Cty G||11/15/2002||8/30/2020||Map||Data|
|877200||Ok Creek||10042232||OK Creek at Preston Rd||6/5/2014||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|877200||Ok Creek||10052393||OK Creek at Mill Road||5/26/2019||8/30/2020||Map||Data|
|877200||Ok Creek||10039915||OK Creek at Mt Hope Rd||5/21/2013||8/30/2020||Map||Data|
Ok Creek is located in the Lower Sugar River watershed which is 217.85 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (65.80%), grassland (16.90%) and a mix of forest (7.60%) and other uses (9.70%). This watershed has 467.98 stream miles, 202.10 lake acres and 6,999.03 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Low 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.