Mona Lake CMI Project - Project Information

Introduction l Project Information l Contacts

Little Black Creek

AWRI's study of Mona Lake and the surrounding watershed is funded by a nonpoint source pollution control grant from the MDEQ Clean Michigan Initiative (CMI) program.

The overarching project goal is to improve water quality in the Mona Lake watershed. To achieve that goal, we need a better understanding of the sources of pollutants in the watershed, and how they vary spatially and temporally. This information can then be used by resource managers for planning, restoration, and remediation activities.

The project objectives are twofold: 1) supplement and complement the preliminary assessment of the Mona Lake watershed, which focused on an extensive water quality assessment of major nutrients in the surface water and sediments of the watershed; and 2) provide data to stakeholders in a usable and interpretable format for resource management decisions.

The first objective will be accomplished by sampling the major tributaries draining into Mona Lake and the lake itself. We will capture the water quality and flow from various land uses and on a seasonal basis, including both base flow and storm events. We already have 16 months of data from all known inflows to Mona Lake, and we will use this information to sample those inflows that contribute most significantly to Mona Lake. This intensive collection effort will provide sufficient information to determine the relative significance of external loads from the watershed vs. internal loads from the lake sediments. This information will be critical to resource managers and planners in developing and implementing plans involving preservation, development, remediation, or restoration.

The second objective will be accomplished by working with the Mona Lake Watershed Council, which includes representatives from the public and private sectors, to implement the recommendations that emerge from the data collected.

We will sample a subset of the tributaries entering into Mona Lake, including Black Creek, Little Black Creek, Cress Creek, and Ellis Drain (which collectively account for ~95% of the flow and external nutrient load to Mona Lake). Tributary investigations will involve flow measurement and water sample collection and analysis. Sediment cores from the lake also will be collected, incubated, and sampled in order to determine internal loading of phosphorus.