• Segment Analysis of Johnson Creek: The Location of Sources of Pollution

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Lewis, Theodore W.; The College at Brockport (2001-06-01)
      Johnson Creek is located in the southern portion of the Lake Ontario watershed, Orleans and Niagara Counties, New York. The relatively large watershed encompasses 98.6 square miles and flows into Lake Ontario near Kuckville, New York. Two years of continuous water quality monitoring indicated that the Johnson Creek watershed was a source of phosphorus, nitrate, organic nitrogen, sodium and soils to Lake Ontario. That is, Johnson Creek and the watershed it drained are a source of nutrients and soil pollution to Lake Ontario relative to other watersheds of similar size in western New York. Where are the sources of nutrients, soils and salts within the Johnson Creek watershed? To answer this question the Soil and Water Conservation Districts of Niagara and Orleans Counties, along with the Center of Applied Aquatic Science and Aquaculture at SUNY Brockport, undertook the process of identifying the point and non-point sources of nutrients and soils by stressed stream analysis or segment analysis. With this report, we provide evidence suggesting the location and the intensity of pollution sources in the Johnson Creek watershed. We have identified three areas/sources in the Johnson Creek watershed that have consistently had high levels of nutrients, soils or sodium. What follows is a synopsis of what pollutants are being lost and where the sources are located. Maps are included in the narrative to locate these sites.
    • Segment Analysis of the Bergholz Creek Watershed of Niagara County, New York

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Lewis, Theodore W.; The College at Brockport (2012-04-01)
      Water resources play a vital role in the economic viability of the Niagara County region, especially in terms of recreation, tourism, and industry. A large percentage of land use is in agriculture, including fruit trees, row crops, and vineyards. The close proximity to Lakes Erie and Ontario has an impact on climate patterns (including rainfall and lake effect snow), moderating the temperature extremes of the region which allows for the production of a diverse variety of crops. Freshwater resources have historically played an instrumental role in community development and economic sustainability. The Bergholz Creek watershed in Niagara County plays an important role in the economy, has aesthetic value, and provides diverse opportunities for those who enjoy the resource directly. A major thrust of the county's tourism industry is predicated on the availability of high quality water resources and angling opportunities in the Niagara River, nearshore Lake Ontario and its other tributaries. Needless to say, agriculture also has a major economic impact in Niagara County; loss of important resources, such as soil and nutrients, from a watershed is of concern to the landowner and the Soil and Water Conservation District. Remediation and protection of these resources depend largely on the identification of both the cause and effect of elements likely to reduce their economic and social value (Makarewicz and Lewis 2000). This led to the creation of monitoring program to collect data needed to accurately characterize the water quality in the creek and to quantify the concentration and loading of nutrients and suspended sediments transported from Eighteenmile Creek to Lake Ontario. A conclusion was that Eighteenmile Creek value was delivering high amounts of phosphorus to Lake Ontario. Eighteenmile Creek lost an annual average of 33 metric tons of TP during the two-year monitoring period. In a similar fashion, Twelvemile Creek was evaluated in 2000 (Makarewicz and Lewis 2000a). One of the priority recommendations from the Makarewicz et al. (2008) report was that the following group of watersheds be targeted for the identification of point and/or nonpoint sources of pollution using a process such as Stressed Stream Analysis/Segment Analysis: Eighteenmile, Jeddo, Bergholz, Tonawanda, and Keg Creeks. A stressed stream or segment analysis of the Eighteenmile Creek watershed was completed by The College at Brockport and the NCSWCD in 2010 (Makarewicz and Lewis 2010). This study follows the 2008 list of recommendations by targeting the Bergholz Creek watershed to identify point and nonpoint sources of pollution using segment analysis.
    • Twelvemile Creek Niagara County, New York

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Nowak, Matthew J.; The College at Brockport (2010-01-01)
      The east branch of Twelvemile Creek (69 mi2) flows through northern Niagara County to its mouth at Lake Ontario 12 miles east of the Niagara River, near the village of Wilson, New York. From fall through spring, good runs of steelhead and brown trout with the occasional Chinook and Coho salmon occur into the creek. Agriculture, especially row crop farming, is predominant within the watershed, though natural protected land is also plentiful. The Wilson-Tuscarora State Park provides a buffer between the creek and agriculture immediately around the mouth of the creek, while upstream farms directly line the creek. Nuisance algae, bacterial abundance, and algal mat development along the southern shoreline of Lake Ontario are major causes of beach closings, fouling the nearshore waters and limiting water recreation. This short report provides a synopsis of data collected monthly from May through September (2003 to 2009) on the water quality of Twelvemile Creek and the lakeside (swimmable depth) of Lake Ontario near the mouth of the creek.