E. coli bacteria is a fecal indicator bacteria that is used to detect pathogens in water. If ingested, pathogens in streams or rivers can cause human health illness. The primary source for most bacterial pollution in streams is from contact with animal and human waste, through agricultural activities or human wastewater systems. Over half of the HUC 12s monitored in the UWR Watershed average E. coli concentrations above 235CFU/100ml E. coli, this value represents Iowa’s single sample maximum water quality standard for primary contact recreational use. E. coli bacteria as an indicator species is a great concern for the UWR watershed. Many of its waters are unsafe for recreational use and human consumption.