Trout Creek. Oneida Nation High School & Pulaski High School. Oneida Nation High School. Pulaski High School. Monitoring in Collaboration. Current Project.
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Oneida Nation High School & Pulaski High School
Monitoring in Collaboration
Oneida Nation High School and Pulaski High School are teaming up to join the Lower Fox River Watershed Monitoring Program. We will work together to monitor two sites on Trout Creek. This monitoring effort will add to data on the creek already being collected by the Oneida Tribe to get a better picture of how restoration efforts are impacting water quality and to further assess areas needing additional care.
The pond at signature, 17th, hole at the Brown County Golf Course remains a concern as it impedes water flow in the creek. The control structure for the pond acts as a barrier to fish passage during normal flow. Further, the pond acts to retain water and warm the stream and lower dissolved oxygen levels.
A new stream channel will
be constructed to bypass the
pond and restore flow within
the main channel of Trout Creek.
A berm will be built to restrict
flow between the new channel
and pond. The channel will be
stabilized with erosion mat,
staking, and seeding prior to
water being released into it.
The control structure will be
replaced to maintain the pond
separately from the stream
channel. Design is complete
and earth moving will occur in
The Pulaski Team
The Pulaski High School team consists of students from the AP Environmental class, Ecology Service Project Independent Study, and the Environmental Club. This year the students from the Pulaski team will complete their first round of water quality monitoring in the spring. To lead up to the water quality monitoring, the students have been researching and completing projects related to water issues. For a large portion of second semester, the students have been learning about several world and local water quality issues. To help spread the word about local water quality issues, the students have worked together on creating a video about the entire Lower Fox River watershed and three of the key issues in this area. The issues in the watershed that the students have included in the video are: TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) for sediment and phosphorus runoff, loss of Northern Pike spawning habitat, and invasive species such as phragmites.
Trout Creek Restoration Efforts
The Oneida Tribe’s Environmental, Health and Safety Division has focused much of its restoration efforts over the past ten years within the Trout Creek Watershed. Projects within the watershed have targeted land protection, stream habitat work, and improved agricultural practices.
Degraded conditions caused by agricultural pollution, channelization, and other human impacts resulted in the loss of brook trout in Trout Creek. The stream has responded favorably to restoration initiatives and is once again a healthy cold water trout stream. On May 12, 2009 brook trout were reintroduced to Trout Creek.
The Oneida Nation Team
The Oneida Nation team includes students in Environmental Science and the ONHS Sustainability Club. Students have historically monitored Duck Creek at our high school location. We work extensively with the Oneida Tribe’s Environmental Health and Safety Department on a wide variety of environmental projects. The tribe has completed several major projects since 2002 that focus on restoring fisheries damaged due to PCB contamination of the Fox River watershed. In fall 2011, we assisted with sowing wild rice in a restored wetland. We participated in the original reintroduction of brook trout into Trout Creek in 2009.
ONHS is a culture based school. It is our belief that the source of our continued survival emerges from our Oneida cultural beliefs. We have always placed a high value on living in harmony with all living things the Creator has placed upon and around Mother Earth.
Brook Trout Reintroduction
In May 2009 approximately 4800 Brook Trout fingerlings were reintroduced at five Trout Creek locations. Another 2800 fingerlings were added in May 2010, and 2350 more were added in May 2011. Stocking will not occur in 2012 in order to check if natural reproduction is occurring.
Current Population Status
Fisheries surveys in 2011 found all three year classes within the stream, indicating good survival. However, because the population is still currently recovering anglers are asked to practice catch and release at this time. This will help the population become self-sustaining and ensure the establishment of a harvestable population in the near future.
Trout found in Trout Creek during a 2011 Fishery Survey
Oneida Tribe, Brown County Golf Course, Brown County Land Conservation Department,
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
Oneida Tribe Health and Safety Division: Fact Sheets