2016 Water Monitoring Report

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The 2016 monioring report is complete. The regular water quality monitoring program includes nutrient sampling on 6 Lambert Creek sites, and nutrient sampling on 12 of the Vadnais Lake Area Watershed lakes. Nutrients and pollutants sampled for data include: total phosphorus, chlorophyll-A, soluble-reactive phosphorus, iron, total nitrogen, nitrate, total suspended solids, and chloride. VLAWMO's specialty monitoring programs, such as E coli and winter chloride sampling, will continue.

It was officially the wettest year on record in Minnesota. Part VLAWMO's water monitoring includes keeping rainfall measurements during the monitoring season. 

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Lakes are summarized with a grading system called the Trophic State Index (TSI). This system was developed in the 1970's to calculate average phosphorus, chlorophyll-A, and Secchi disk readings, and generate a summarizing number. Certain numbers fall under various classifications. But what do these scientific words mean?

  • Eutrophic: A water body that is high in nutrients and low oxygen content. A eutrophic lake is usually shallow, green, with limited oxygen in the bottom layer of water. 
  • Hypereutrophic: A very nutrient-rich lake with murky water, frequent algal blooms and fish kills, foul odor, and rough (non-game) fish. 
  • Mesotrophic: The classification between eutrophic and oligotrophic lakes. These lakes have moderately clear water, late-summer algal blooms, moderate macrophyte (aquatic insect) populations, and occasional fish kills. 

The number from the classification is turned into a letter grade as another way to track changes year to year.  

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Results are used to guide local water policies and management, as well as future water quality projects such as raingardens and shoreline restorations. Action according to these results is a community effort, and you're invited to be a part of it! 

Read the latest on our local lakes here. Stay tuned to our website for summaries highlighting key lakes.

2016 Monitoring Report

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