Fish and Aquatic Life
Also known as the “North Branch”, this stream flows southeast and merges with South Branch Hefty Creek to form the Little Sugar River West Branch. The three branches of Hefty Creek run through rolling hills with small ridges. The ridges are mostly wooded with agriculture in the gently sloping valleys (Amrhein, pers. obs). The north branch is a Class III trout fishery with a potential to be a Class II. It is also classified as an ERW for most of its length and the redside dace has been found in these waters. The upper portions are mostly gravel, rubble, and hardpan while near the mouth the bottom is more muck and the stream more turbid (Surface Waters of Green Co., Amrhein pers. obs). The state recently purchased easements in the headwaters area of the stream. Fish and habitat evaluations were conducted in 2002.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Bush, D.M., R. Cornelius, D. Engle, and C.L. Brynildson. 1980. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Green County, 2nd EdThis small. trout stream flows southeast and merges with Hefty Creek South Branch forming the Little Sugar
River West Branch. In its headwaters, Hefty Creek is joined by two unnamed streams; and just above its mouth by Hefty Creek Center Branch. The watershed is composed of cropland and pasture and a few small stretches have been ditched. In the upper portions of the stream the water is clear and the bottom is composed of gra~e], rubble and hardpan, while near its mouth, the stream is generally turbid and has a muck bottom.
ition. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, Wisconsin.The entire stream is considered to be Class III trout water, although the upper reaches have little flow.
Pools are scarce and instream cover is minimal. Forage fish are abundant and the rare redside dace is present. Current management consists of annual stocking of brown trout although rainbow trout have been stocked in the past. A significant population of muskrats and a few migratory waterfowl make use of the area. Public access is available at eight public road crossings.
Fish Species: Rainbow trout, brown trout, stoneroller unspecified, redside dace, carp, common shiner, redbelly dace unspecified, bluntnose minnow, creek chub, white sucker, brook stickleback, fantail darter, Johnny darter, mottled sculpin.
Surface Acres = 7.1, Length = 8.5 Miles, Gradient = 25 ft./mi., Base Discharge = 15.5 cu. ft./sec
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Hefty Creek (miles 0.52-10.74) was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new biological (fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scores) sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water was meeting this designated use and was not considered impaired.
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.
Monitor Water Quality or Sediment
Category 3 water with a single 'Poor' fIBI. Further monitoring recommended. AU: 18528; Station ID: 10010915
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|
|881900||Hefty Creek||10010915||N. Br. Hefty Cr.-Cth N ||8/23/2012||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
Hefty Creek is located in the Little Sugar River watershed which is 133.02 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (46.80%), grassland (32.10%) and a mix of forest (13.90%) and other uses (7.00%). This watershed has 351.74 stream miles, 50.40 lake acres and 3,252.10 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Not Ranked 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.