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Are you a frequent visitor to LakeSuperiorStreams?

Here's where we highlight pages that are new or that have undergone major revisions in the past few months, and relay the latest news involving LakeSuperiorStreams.org and Regional Stormwater Protection Team activities.


May 9, 2017

MN Water Technology Roundtable: Challenges & Solutions in Stormwater

Forum focused on stormwater treatment technologies and management

Learn about new and emerging management practices and technolgoies for managing and treating runoff for the protection of natural resources

Learn more and register here.

April 20, 2017

Superior WI logo

Phragmites Control in the St. Louis River Estuary

Open House and Panel Discussion

Learn how to identify this non-native, aquatic invasive species and what to do to assist in monitoring and management. Get your questions answered by the experts.

Thursday, April 20 from 6 - 8 p.m.

Pier B Resort; 800 W Railroad St.; Duluth, MN 55802

Contact Alyssa Hoppe, Program Manager, at alyssa@stlouisriver.org, for more information.

March 2017

MN DNR Announces Sign-Up for 2017 Frog and Toad Calling Survey

Volunteers are needed to help track population changes in the state's 14 frog and toad species as part of an annual survey, which is now in its 21st year.

Frogs and toads are indicators of habitat quality and provide valuable information on the condition of Minnesota's wetlands.

Volunters drive to 10 designated stops on a route and conduct nighttime "listening surveys" on three evenings between March and July to capture seasonal variations in frog and toad species.

Learn more here.

March 19-25, 2017

Water Week 2017

This year's theme is WASTEWATER

International Water Day is Wednesday, March 22

Water week 2017 will communicate the value of water to environmental protection, to economic development and to job creation - and inspire action.

Learn more here.

Spring 2017

UMDConcreteDNR Volunteer Opportunities

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has volunteer opprtunities to band woodcocks, enter data from fur trappers, count loons, be a campground host, and monitor state trails..

More information can be found here.

March 2017

Ice Fishing Shelter Removal Dates Approaching for Northern Minnesota Lakes

Because of rapidly deteriorating ice conditions, anglers may need to remove their shelters early and not wait for the deadline!

Inland Lakes = Remove by midnight on Monday, March 20

Minnesota-Canada border waters = Remove by Friday, March 31

March 2017

Maintaining Roadside Ditches

Rural roadside ditches carry water away from roads and protect our infrastructure, but they also carry runoff to nearby lakes and streams. Problems in ditches can lead to impacts to water quality downstream.

Check out the Minnesota Sea Grant’s website for more information.

March 23, 2017

Superior WI logo

St. Louis River Alliance Membership Meeting

Learn what the Saint Louis River Alliance is about!

Hear about the current state of the organization, what projects the Alliance is working on, volunteer activities, and a progress report on the Clean Water Campaign.

You do not have to be a member to attend this meeting.

Thursday, March 23, 6:30 p.m.

Mont du Lac Resort

3125 Mont du Lac Drive; Superior, WI

Contact Kris Eilers, Executive Director at 218-733-9520 with more questions.

March 2017

WatershedGamethe Watershed Game

The watershed Game is an interactive, education tool that helps individuals understand the connection between land use and water quality.

Participants learn how a variety of land uses impact water and natural resources, increase their knowledge of best management practices (BMPs), and learn how their choices can prevent adverse impacts.  Participants apply the tools of plans, practices, and policies that help them achieve clean water goals for protection and restoration while providing for community growth. 

Learn more about the game here.

February 2017

New Publication Helps Communities Evaluate Local Codes to Facilitate Green Infrastructure

Tackling Barrier to Green Infrastructure: An audit of local codes and ordinances

This workbook will help communities review, revise and prioritize local codes and ordinances to promote and advance green infrastructure implementation.

Learn more here.

Winter 2016

Winter 2017 Water Action Volunteers Stream Monitoring Newsletter

Issue covers phosphorus monitoring information, details on Level 1 Monitoring training and equipment, and nominations for the 2017 Stream Monitoring Award

Check out the latest edition here!

Check out the entire collection of newsletters here.

March 23-24, 2016

NASECA-WI Construction Site Erosion Control and Stormwater Permit Compliance Training

Focusing on Engineers, Site Managers, Site Superintendents, Contractor Superintendents and Foremen, BMP Installers and Inspectors

Thursday & Friday, March 23 & 24, 2017
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
UW-Superior, Yellowjacket Union (Great Room) - Belknap and Catlin Ave, Superior, WI 54880
Breakfast and registration at 8 am

More information and registration can be found here.

April 12

March 14

Feb 8

Free, informal speaker series about the St. Louis River Estuary:

The River Talks

Grab a mug of coffee or maybe a glass of beer and learn about the St. Louis River Estuary at the same time. The Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve and the Minnesota and Wisconsin Sea Grant programs are in the fourth year of science cafe-type evening talks about the estuary.

Check the River Talk website for details about upcoming talks. If you miss a talk, visit Wisconsin Sea Grant’s “Great Lakes Takes” blog for a summary.

January 25, 2017

Wild Rice Sulfate Standard Open Houses

Learn more about MPCA's proposed approach for revisions to its wild rice sulfate water quality standard.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017
6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Griggs Center 2nd Floor
Kirby Student Center
University of Minnesota-Duluth
1120 Kirby Drive
Duluth, MN 55812

More information can be found here.

Winter 2016 - 2017

UMDConcreteDNR Volunteer Opportunities

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has volunteer opprtunities to maintain animal databases, to proof and organize geological documentation, and to help with candelight snowshoe hiking events.

More information can be found here.

Winter 2016

DNR Reminder: Avoid Early Ice


The DNR offers the following guidelines for new clear ice:

  • 4 inches for ice fishing or other activities on foot
  • 5 inches for snowmobile or ATV
  • 8-12 inches for car or small pickup
  • 12-15 inches for medium truck

The most important piece of equipment to have on the ice is a life jacket!

Learn more here.

December 29, 2016

Clean Water Open House

Join the St. Louis River Alliance to celebrate the successes of the first year of the Clean Water Campaign!

Thursday, December 29
5 - 6:30 p.m.
Valentini's Vicino Lago - 1400 London Road, Duluth, MN 55805
Free appetizers & cash bar

More information can be found here.

November 2016

SLRE data mapping app


Try our new mapping and plotting utility to explore the water quality data collected in the St Louis River estuary over the last 60 years.

Fall 2016

Fall 2016 Wisconsin Great Lakes AOC Newsletter

Check out the latest edition here!

November 2016

UMDConcreteGiant snowballs in Serbia

Thousands of giant snowballs appeared on a beach in the Gulf of Ob. The combination of ice, temperature and wind conditions along the coastline resulted in the formation of these gigantic snowballs.

Read the full article here.

October 5-6, 2016

Minnesota Coastal Conference 2016

Join the Minnesota Lake Superior Coastal Program to celebrate your Superior efforts to protect and enhance our coast!

Visit the Coastal Program's Conference website to register and see conference details.

October 2016

UMDConcreteEmerald Ash Borer in Duluth

Emerald Ash Borer has been found near Hartley Park, and now in Canal Park, putting Southeast St. Louis County in a quarantine. It is now illegal to move hardwood firewood in efforts to control the spread.

Read more information on Emerald Ash Borer and regulations here.

June 28, 2016

Give input on local stormwater programs

[Duluth, MN] - Citizens from the Duluth area are invited to the annual public stormwater meeting on

June 28th at 6:30 pm at the MNDOT building at 1123 Mesaba Ave.

Stormwater is rain water and snow melt that collects on the ground as a result of rain and snowfall. When this water flows across the surface of the land it picks up pollutants and carries them to the nearest stream, river, or lake.  Representatives from the City of Duluth, City of Hermantown, MNDOT, St Louis County, and Lake Superior College will present information about their stormwater programs and will be seeking public input on opportunities to improve.

Community participation and input is crucial to make sure that we maintain the highest quality water we all enjoy in this region.

Please direct questions or comments to Chris Kleist,
City of Duluth at (218) 730-4063


UMDConcreteUMD Students Test Green Concrete

UMD students are comparing concrete containing fly ash and silica fume to traditional concrete containing Portland cement. Traditional concrete production has a high carbon footprint, and these new mixes aim to reduce carbon emissions.

Read the full article here (PDF).


Stop the Spiny!

Edgy video demonstrates how the invasive spiny water flea alters aquatic food webs and contributes to greening in inland lakes!

UW-Madison, UW-Extension, Wisconsin Sea Grant and Wildlife Forever teamed up to make this memorable short film on the invasive spiny water flea. Spiny water fleas feast on small aquatic organisms, meaning there is less food for small fish, and ultimately game fish. The organisms spiny water fleas eat are grazers of algae, so when they eat these organisms, there is an increase in algae abundance for inland lakes, causing the water to appear green and reducing water clarity.

June 25-30, 2016

St. Louis River Watershed 2016 Meeting Series

Click Here to RSVP

South St. Louis Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) will host community meetings to discuss what is causing different types of pollution within the St. Louis River Watershed, how to protect healthy streams, and how to restore unhealthy ones.


Pollinate MNPollinate Minnesota

Duluth recently pledged to protect pollinators and became a Pollinator Friendly Community!

Visit Pollinate Minnesota's website to learn more on pollinator advocacy, educational opportunities, and upcoming events and activities.


Enger Park Golf Course Seeks to End Reliance

on Water from Creeks

Duluth News Tribune Article (PDF)

Barr Engineering, the City of Duluth, MN Department of Natural Resources, and Enger Park Golf Course are working together to reduce the Golf Course's reliance on Buckingham Creek for irrigation, while also supporting a thriving brook trout population.


Cold Water Safety

At what water temperature is it safe to swim? Learn more about cold water safety!

Visit the National Center for Cold Water Safety's website to learn more information about your body's responses to cold water, and recommended swimming temperatures

Throughout Summer

MPCA LogoMPCA Citizen Stream & Lake Monitoring

Are you interested in monitoring water clarity in your local stream or lake??

More than 1,300 Minnesotans participate in the Citizen Monitoring Programs, but in order to reach all water bodies across Minnesota, more volunteers are needed.

“69,000 miles of rivers and over 12,000 lakes is a lot of water to cover,” says Laurie Sovell, coordinator of the MPCA’s Citizen Stream Monitoring Program. “We are looking for people curious about local water bodies and passionate about protecting our state’s water resources.”

As part of the program, volunteers are asked to perform a short and simple water clarity test at their favorite lake or stream, once per week throughout the summer. Equipment and training are provided by the MPCA and no prior experience is necessary.

For some lakes and streams, volunteer-collected data is the only data available, making citizen involvement critical to ensuring the lasting health of Minnesota’s waters.

Find out if your favorite lake or stream needs monitoring by using the MPCA’s interactive map at http://www.pca.state.mn.us/d4awwwd

To become a volunteer or learn more about the program, visit the program’s website at www.pca.state.mn.us/cmp, or call 651-296-6300 (Twin Cities) or 800-657-3864 (Greater Minnesota).

Classroom &

Field Sessions






Aquatic Invasives Species Sentry Program

The Saint Louis River Alliance is excited to announce they are beginning registration for their new Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Sentry Program.  Participants will have the opportunity to undergo extensive training on how to protect their favorite bodies of water from new invasive threats through monitoring protocols which can be incorporated into their favorite recreational activities.  
By becoming a volunteer Aquatic Invasive Species Sentry, participants will help protect the waters of St. Louis County by learning:
    St. Louis River Alliancehow to identify AIS along with native species
    impacts of AIS
    how they spread
    early detection, survey and reporting methods
Training will consist of two modules, a three hour classroom session and a three hour field session, led by Minnesota Sea Grant and St. Louis River Alliance instructors.  The total cost for the training series is $30, which includes take home materials and lunch from the Northern Waters Smokhaus during the classroom session.  

Currently, classroom sessions are planned for April 23rd (AM and PM), May 22nd(PM), June 25th (AM), and July 23rd (AM).  Field sessions are planned for May 21st(AM), June 11th (AM), June 25th (PM), July 23rd (PM), and July 30th (AM).  

MN DNR LogoRegistration required: http://stlouisriver.org/workshop-series/

Learn more on the website

For more information contact:  Katie Brey at 218-733-9520 or katie@stlouisriver.org


Superior WI logo

Superior Erosion Control Trainings

Trainings for Consultants (Mar 31) and Contractors (Apr 26) at UWS YellowJacket Union

The City of Superior is offering two Erosion Control Trainings this spring, one specifically for Consultants who write Erosion Control plans, and another for the Contractors who impliment Erosion Control BMPs.

More information, including registration, found on the City of Superior website.

Contact Kristy DeVera or Andrea Crouse with any questions. 715-394-0392


MPCA logo

MS4 Permit Workshop in Brainerd

March 24 in Brainerd, MN

The Minnesota Erosion Control Association (MECA) has partnered with the MPCA to bring you this MS4 training opportunity. The training will focus on the inspection aspects of meeting your MS4 permit requirements. Highlights include prioritizing construction sites, pre-inspection activities, completing inspections, post-construction activities, non-compliance, MS4 system inspections, and incorporating IDDE inspections into everyday activities. 

You will receive a certificate of completion for this workshop. MECA, in partnership with the MPCA is offering this MS4 outreach/educational workshop in two locations.

Instructors: Rick Baird-City of Mankato, April Ryan-SEH, John Paulson-City of Hutchinson and MPCA Staff.

For more information and to register for the conference, go to MECA's web site: http://mnerosion.org/

Or contact the MECA office at 320-685-5444 or email at meca@mnerosion.org


Upper Great Lakes Law and Policy Sypmosium: Managing Water Across Boundaries

Greysolon Ballroom, 231 E Superior St. Duluth, MN

The Upper Great Lakes Law and Policy Symposium is being crafted to zero in on how relatively recent activities (i.e. the Great Lakes Compact and the Great Lakes Ballast Water Collaborative) might serve as models for tackling other Great Lakes trans-boundary issues like climate, mining, crude oil/energy movement, and water levels. The Symposium's goals are to:

  • Create a forum for a reasoned exploration of Lake Superior and Upper Great Lakes issues in a positive, informed way so that policies and laws will work toward sustainable solutions across jurisdictions.
  • Clarify mechanisms for integrating science into policy and regulations.
  • Generate at least six high-quality, high-impact articles about Upper Great Lakes challenges and solutions for the Sea Grant Law and Policy Journal
  • Highlight the critical importance of rational environmental laws and policies, and the University of Minnesota Law School and Sea Grant's efforts to encourage opportunities to that end.

Registration required:

Learn more on the website


Citizen Stream Monitoring

Are you interested in conducting Total Phosphorus Monitoring at your WAV monitoring site??

The Water Action Volunteers (WAV) Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program has allocated funding for 2015 to encourage active WAV citizen monitors and/or WAV monitoring groups to obtain total phosphorus monitoring data at their stream monitoring site(s). To allow all interested individuals and groups the chance to use the available funds, a short application process has been developed.

Please go to the WAV Total Phosphorus website and follow the links to learn more!

To apply, please use the electronic application made available on the website. The application can be filled in electronically and then emailed to Lindsey Albright (lindsey.albright@wisconsin.gov) to apply. The deadline to submit applications is Sunday, Feb 14, 2016.


The Value of Nature's Benefits in the St. Louis River Watershed

Weds. Feb 24th at 7:00 PM

Barker's Waterfront Grille, Barker's Island Inn, 300 Marina Dr., Superior, WI

Nancy Schudlt, water projects coordinator with the Fond du Lac Band will present, “The Value of Nature’s Benefits in the St. Louis River Watershed.”

Join us at Barker's Island on the last Weds of each month for these informal and informative conversations!

Wisconsin Sea Grant and the Lake Superior NERR have teamed up to offer this series of science café-type evening talks about the St. Louis River Estuary. These informal “River Talks” are held monthly through May.

Check the River Talk website for details about upcoming talks. If you miss a talk, visit Wisconsin Sea Grant’s “Great Lakes Takes” blog for a summary.


New Lake Superior Webcams on LakeSuperiorStreams.org

Check it out!

Wonder what the conditions on Lake Superior look like right now? Check out LakeSuperiorStreams.org's new Webcam page. We looked for all the live views of the Lake Superior we could find and put links in one convenient location.

If you find more, let us know!



Climate Change Stats

Seeley, Mark W. "Minnesota Weather Almanac." 2nd ed.
St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2015. Print

Since 1866, 12 rainfall events have occurred in Minnesota which included "a 6-inch one-day rainfall that encompassed more than a thousand square miles and a peak rainfall measurement of 8 inches somewhere within that area...five of these twelve mega-rainfall events happened since the year 2001. Further, the NOAA National Climatic Data Center reports that these types of storms are increasing in frequency across midwestern states." (p309-311)

2-inch thunderstorm rainfall events have doubled in frequency since 1991. (p308) paraphrased.

In 2012 "...portions of Minnesota were declared federal drought disaster areas, while other areas even within the same counties were declared federal flood disasters, the first time in state history that such a climatic situation emerged." (p308)

"Most of the state's climate stations show an increase in average annual precipitation that ranges from 1 to 4 inches over the past 60 years" The increase in Grand Rapids (Itasca County) was 4.58 inches. (p306)

"...many Minnesota watersheds have shown more consistent measures of high-volume flows on stream gauges in the spring, often at or above flood stage." (p306)

"...a larger fraction of annual precipitation is coming from intense thunderstorms...Evidence for an increased frequency of intense thunderstorms can be found at many climate stations." (p308)



Medications, cosmetic ingredients, and endocrine disruptors found in Minnesota lakes and streams

A new study released by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency confirms that lakes and streams across Minnesota are contaminated by a variety of pharmaceuticals, ingredients from personal care products, and endocrine-disrupting compounds.  This is the latest in a series of studies investigating the presence of these chemicals in Minnesota’s surface water.

Because some pharmaceutical contamination of surface water is due to wastewater, the MPCA advises that people avoid flushing unwanted medicines down the toilet. Better alternatives include taking the drugs to a medication collection site, or mixing them with vinegar or cat litter to discourage ingestion and throwing them in the trash in a sealed container. Special recommendations apply to liquid chemotherapy drugs.

The full report is available on the MPCA’s website


flood_radar1973 Flood Booklet

Learn more about the 1970s Storms and Floods in the recently re-discoved booklet.

Then visit LakeSuperiorStreams.org's Flood page to read more about the 2012 Solstice Flood.

1973 Flood Booklet [8MB]


Which fish species spawn in North Shore streams during the fall?

The Minnesota waters of Lake Superior provide fall spawning runs of pink salmon, coaster brook trout, coho salmon, chinook salmon and the occasional brown trout. These runs are generally smaller and less consistent than other areas in Lake Superior. That’s because North Shore streams have limited spawning habitat available for migratory fish due to steep waterfalls that act as natural barriers to fish passage.

Pink salmon are the most abundant species observed in the fall spawning run. In October, native coaster brook trout will migrate to spawn in tributaries and shoal areas of Lake Superior.

The timing and frequency of fall runs on the North Shore depends on individual river conditions, including water temperature and fall rains.


Upstream Posted Boundaries for North Shore Streams

The Minnesota DNR released an updated listing of all streams with upstream posted boundaries. Posted upstream boundaries on Lake Superior Tributaries generally correspond to the areas accessible to andromous trout and salmo (andromous = born in streams, spends most of its life in Lake Superior and returns to streams to spawn). The upstream boundaries, as well as fish sancturay areas, are marked with signs.

Find a link to the document here and in the LakeSuperiorStreams Understanding - Fish section.

Other "What's New" pages: Latest | 2014-15 | 2012-13 | 2010-11 | 2008-09 | 2006-07 | 2004-05 | 2002-03


This page was last updated: March 28, 2017 1:38 PM