Clean Water

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3.6 Water Quality

By |2019-07-30T22:29:58-05:00June 11th, 2019|

The high percentage of agricultural land use in the Upper Wapsipinicon River Watershed intensifies ground and surface water quality issues in the watershed. The interactions between surface and groundwater and the vulnerability of groundwater is demonstrated in a survey of state well test results associated with thousands of private wells in Iowa. Data is provided by [...]

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Upper Wapsi in the News!

By |2018-04-02T08:20:09-05:00April 2nd, 2018|Categories: Clean Water, Flood Mitigation, Watershed Management|

Work on Wapsipinicon will reduce flooding, aid wildlife Orlan Love, Gazette correspondent Construction is expected to begin later this year on a project intended to reduce flood impacts and improve water quality in the Wapsipinicon River. “The main focus is flood control, which will help everybody downstream. But the projects also will improve water quality and [...]

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Upper Wapsi Watershed Open Houses

By |2017-10-31T10:43:23-05:00October 31st, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Flood Mitigation, Uncategorized, Watershed Management|

Residents and landowners in the Upper Wapsi Watershed are invited to a series of Public Meeting Open Houses. Who might want to come? Anyone who is interested in... Keeping communities and landowners in the Upper Wapsi protected from flooding. Sustaining clean water. Learning about urban conservation practices that can beautify communities and help better manage stormwater [...]

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Rain Gardens: Beautiful and Beneficial

By |2019-08-01T15:29:38-05:00October 2nd, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Community Stormwater Management, Flood Mitigation, Uncategorized|

Rain gardens utilize good soil and deep-rooted plants to infiltrate runoff from a smaller area, such as a roof, driveway, or a section of street or parking lot. Often rain gardens are beautifully landscaped with brightly colored flowers that attract butterflies and other pollinators. Properly constructed rain gardens are in the natural path of runoff and [...]

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Bioswales: Not your grandmother’s storm sewer

By |2017-09-25T10:35:05-05:00September 25th, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Community Stormwater Management, Flood Mitigation, Watershed Management|

A bioswale can be used in place of a traditional storm sewer. Planted with deep-rooted native grasses, flowers, and shrubs, bioswales beautify while helping water filter and infiltrate. Bioswales work best when they are placed in existing drainage areas. By design, bioswales infiltrate frequent smaller rain events and convey heavy rains in a non-erosive manner. They [...]

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Water Sampling in the Upper Wapsi

By |2017-06-12T08:09:51-05:00June 12th, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Uncategorized|

Elaine Hughes prepares to draw samples from Buffalo Creek near Quasqueton. A couple of times a month, volunteers collect water samples from streams, creeks and the Wapsipinicon River. Samples are sent to Coe College, where they are tested for nitrates, phosphorous, chlorine, sulfate and total suspended solids. Monitoring is a critical component of improving [...]

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Building a Stormwater Quality Management Program in Readlyn

By |2019-08-03T15:40:53-05:00March 14th, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Flood Mitigation|

The City of Readlyn recently received $70,000 from the Iowa Water Quality Initiative Urban Conservation Project to be used to support a local partnership brought together with the common goal of building a stormwater quality management program within the City of Readlyn. This project will partner with the SRF Sponsored Projects Program to install a series of [...]

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Master River Stewards Program to be Offered Summer 2017 in Wapsipinicon River Watershed

By |2017-03-13T11:24:13-05:00March 13th, 2017|Categories: Clean Water, Flood Mitigation, Watershed Management|

Iowa Rivers Revival’s Master River Stewards Program is a comprehensive river course that will focus on riverine systems, including skills to paddle and navigate rivers, restore aquatic habitat, improve water quality, and understand policies related to floodplains, river protection and restoration. The Master River Steward program will build on a network of river experts in various partner [...]

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The Wapsipinicon River

The Wapsipinicon River stretches over 290 miles from the Iowa/Minnesota border all the way to the Mississippi River near Clinton, Iowa. Although it only extends two miles into Minnesota, the Wapsipinicon River is the fifth largest Iowa tributary of the Mississippi, being surpassed in length only by the Des Moines, Cedar, Iowa, and Skunk rivers. It is a long narrow watershed that for 180 miles averages barely more than 15 miles wide and thus it has no major tributary.

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Even though it is narrow, this watershed covers 4.5% of Iowa. The Wapsipinicon River boasts the longest, continuous stretch of natural and scenic river corridor in the Iowan Surface Region of Iowa. Much of that river corridor is in public ownership and dominated by wooded wetlands and riparian forests that provide habitat for birds, reptiles and other animal species, as well as birders, boaters, paddlers and anglers.

The Upper Wapsi

The Upper Wapsipinicon River, or Upper Wapsi, is a section that includes the 270 miles of river above Anamosa, Iowa. The Upper Wapsi Watershed drains over 1 million acres and encompasses all or portions of 11 counties, 27 communities, 17 unincorporated villages, 120 lakes and 8 major rivers and streams totaling over 2,000 river miles.