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EGLE director joins staff in Cass River watershed to assess water quality by conducting fish and macroinvertebrate surveys
August 26, 2021
EGLE Director Liesl Clark, and Aaron Keatley, chief deputy director of the department, donned chest waders recently as they joined staffers in the Cass River and Goodings Creek in Vassar, Michigan, to assess the warm water fishery and macroinvertebrate community there.
The Cass River is a "trend site" sampled for macroinvertebrates every five years. A fish survey had not been conducted on this stretch of river before, which provided an opportunity to assess the warm water fishery.
Goodings Creek was a status site randomly selected in the Cass River watershed to assess water quality by examining the macroinvertebrate diversity and abundance.
Electrofishing surveys occur throughout the state on a yearly basis at different locations by biologists. Status and trend sites are sampled on a five-year rotating watershed basis.
The work conducted allows EGLE staff to identify stream segments that are meeting water quality standards through the fish and macroinvertebrate surveys. Water bodies not meeting water quality standards are listed as impaired within our biannual Integrated Report to EPA. Impaired waters are areas that watershed groups, conservation districts, and the government (local, state and federal) can focus on to restore.
The information collected for each watershed is entered into the EGLE database, watershed reports are prepared to provide information to the public, fact sheets are created to summarize watershed water quality, and the data is submitted to the EPA through EGLE's biannual Integrated Report.
Photo caption: EGLE Director Clark (right), Dep. Director Keatley (center) and EGLE staff on water quality assessment outing in Vassar.