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Watersheds of Illinois - 1996

5. Kishwaukee River Watershed

Locator MapThe Kishwaukee River Watershed covers a total of 779,747 acres in McHenry, Boone, Winnebago, Ogle, DeKalb, Lee, and Kane counties. The largest cities in the watershed are DeKalb (34,925) and Belvidere (15,958). Major streams which comprise the Kishwaukee River Watershed include the Kishwaukee River, South Branch Kishwaukee River, North Branch Kishwaukee River, Mokeler Creek, Beaver Creek, Kilbuck Creek, Owens Creek, Piscasaw Creek, Rush Creek, and Coon Creek. A total of 469 stream miles were assessed on the Kishwaukee River and its tributaries. Overall resource quality is "good" on 411 stream miles (88%), and "fair" conditions exist on 58 stream miles (12%). The primary causes of water quality problems are nutrients and organic enrichment (low dissolved oxygen) attributed to agriculture and municipal point source pollution. A total of three lakes covering 216 acres were also assessed in the watershed. Overall resource quality is "good" on eight acres (4%) and "fair" on 208 acres (96%). The primary causes of water quality problems are nutrients, siltation, suspended solids, and noxious aquatic plants attributed to agriculture and municipal point sources.

Kishwaukee River

A total of 87 stream miles of the Kishwaukee River (PQ) were assessed in the Kishwaukee River Basin. The overall resource quality of all of these stream miles was "good." No causes or sources of pollution have been identified as currently impacting the Kishwaukee River.

South Branch Kishwaukee River

The South Branch Kishwaukee River (PQC) flows through DeKalb County. The river was assessed for overall resource quality on 62 stream miles. Of these stream miles, 32 stream miles had "good" conditions and 30 stream miles had "fair" conditions. Causes of impact on the river were nutrients and organic enrichment (low dissolved oxygen) from agriculture and municipal point source pollution.

Mokeler Creek

Mokeler Creek (PQEA) is a tributary of the Kishwaukee River that is 10 stream miles in length. The creek was assessed for overall resource quality was found to have "fair" conditions, mainly due to nutrients from agriculture and construction.

Candlewick Lake

Candlewick Lake (RPV), located in Boone County, is a privately-owned lake managed by the Candlewick Lake Association. The lake was built in 1975 by damming an unnamed tributary of Beaver Creek. Candlewick Lake is 200 acres in size and has a watershed area of 2,100 acres. The overall resource quality of the lake is considered "fair." Causes of pollution to the lake include nutrients, siltation, suspended solids, and noxious aquatic plants. Sources of pollution include agriculture and municipal point sources.

Emerald Lake

Emerald Lake (RPB), located in McHenry County, is a private lake managed by Colleen's Cote Civic Association. The lake was constructed in 1957 by damming a lowland area. The lake is eight acres and has a watershed of 49 acres. The overall resource quality of Emerald Lake is considered "fair." Primary causes of pollution to the lake include nutrients, siltation, organic enrichment (low dissolved oxygen), suspended solids, and noxious aquatic plants. Sources of pollution include agricultural runoff, and land disposal (septic systems).

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