Buffalo River

The watershed is largely agricultural (row crops and pasture), accounting for more than 70% of the overall watershed acres. Development pressure is moderate to considerable in some areas. Intensive monitoring shows that E. coli and turbidity are the most prevalent factors for rivers and streams. Shallow lakes in the watershed have issues with water clarity, chlorophyll, and nutrients leading to eutrophication.

    What's being done

    The Buffalo River Watershed was one of the first in the state to implement the Watershed Approach beginning in 2008. A WRAPS Report and TMDL Report for the watershed were published in 2016. Since then the watershed has undertaken many water quality projects to correct impairments and protect areas at risk of becoming impaired.
    The watershed began Cycle 2 intensive watershed monitoring in 2019. Monitoring will resume in 2020.
    In summer 2020 the Becker County SWCD was completing work on the final piece of a large, multifaceted sediment reduction effort -- a 2,000-foot pipe project that addresses one of the top five sources of sediment in the watershed identified in a 2015 report. 

    Monitoring and assessment

    Strategy development for restoration and protection