Davidson Creek, Middle Yegua Creek and Deer Creek are currently impaired for not meeting the recreational use standard for E. coli of 126 CFU/100 ml. A Recreational Use Attainability Analysis was conducted on each creek and showed that primary contact recreation occurs on all water bodies indicating that standards will not change.
Through this project, existing data such as water quality data, flow, wildlife and livestock estimates, number of septic systems, etc. is being collected and evaluated to assist in identifying causes and sources of parameters impairing water quality. This characterization is being conducted using Geographic Information Systems analysis, National Agricultural Statistics Service, Council of Governments data as well as a variety of other sources.
To supplement existing data and attempt to fill data gaps and improve analysis, additional water quality and flow data is being collected at eight sites monthly (two sites in the Deer Creek watershed and three sites in each of the Middle Yegua Creek and Davidson Creek watersheds). Such data is crucial in estimating load reductions. Load reductions needed to accomplish water quality standards and goals will be calculated using Load Duration Curves.
Stakeholders are learning through a variety of programs that focus on impairment parameters, local water quality and what can be done to improve water quality. In addition to these education programs, stakeholders are being engaged, when appropriate, to participate in characterizing the watershed and estimating pollutant loading reductions.
As a research assistant for TWRI, Stephanie deVilleneuve works on various watershed protection, management and research projects with university faculty, state, local and federal governments and stakeholders to address statewide water-related issues.
Funding provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board State Nonpoint Source Grant Program.