The Pomme de Terre River begins cool and clear in Otter Tail County, bordered by wooded hills and grassy meadows. It flows south through several lakes; as the river nears its mouth, it is bordered by eroding banks, becoming increasingly muddy before discharging into the Minnesota River at Marsh Lake.
Land use within the Pomme de Terre watershed is primarily agricultural, accounting for approximately 81% of the available acres. There are impairments starting from Barrett Lake and continue to the outlet to the Minnesota River at Marsh Lake.
What's being done
Monitoring and assessment reports and data
- Assessment Report of Selected Lakes Within the Pomme de Terre River Watershed
- Pomme de Terre River Watershed Monitoring and Assessment Report (wq-ws3-07020002b)
- Pomme de Terre River Watershed Biotic Stressor Identification Study (wq-iw7-36)
- Pomme de Terre River Watershed: Water assessment and trends update (wq-ws3-07020002c)
Strategy for restoration and protection
The Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy report was completed in 2013. A work plan is being developed to finish out the major watershed work.
- Pomme de Terre River Fecal Coliform TMDL: Implementation plan (wq-iw7-08c)
- Pomme de Terre River Turbidity TMDL: Implementation plan (wq-iw7-18c)
Removing of an old dam and restoring a creek's curves are improving habitat and water quality in the Pomme de Terre River Watershed.
Simply put, the river is unhealthy. Sediment clouds the water, phosphorus causes algae, nitrogen poses risks to humans and fish, and bacteria make the water unsafe for swimming.