SWAG 10- Assessing Itasca County's Big/Little Fork Basin Lakes
This assessment will be performed using scientific volunteers, will build capacity at a technical training program at Itasca Community College (ICC), and will provide MPCA with answers providing a reasonable expectation for water quality in this under-studied region of Minnesota. The purpose of this project is to inventory the water quality of 6 of the high priority Big Fork watershed lakes targeted by MPCA and 39 additional lakes between 100 and 500 acres in the Big Fork River watershed, the Little Fork River watershed, the upper Mississippi basin, and a in a part of Itasca County that USGS and MDNR placed nominally in the Prairie-Willow drainage (Mississippi tributary) but really either flow north to the Big Fork or are endorheic. Each lake will be sampled on 8 occasions over two years. The samples will measure phosphorus, nitrogen, chlorophyll, color, alkalinity, pH, dissolved organic carbon as mixed zone (2m) integrated samples and field depth-profiles of temperature, oxygen, pH, turbidity, and conductivity.