Idaho Water Science Center

Water Quality

Filter Total Items: 17
Date published: April 8, 2020
Status: Active

Continuous Water-Quality Monitoring of Middle Snake River Springs in Support of Threatened and Endangered Snail Species

Two species of aquatic snails, the Banbury Springs limpet (Idaholanx fresti) and the Bliss Rapids snail (Taylorconcha serpenticola) live in springs along the middle Snake River in...

Date published: March 20, 2020
Status: Active

Groundwater Quality and Quantity Trends in the Middle Snake River Region, South-Central Idaho

Groundwater-quality and groundwater-level data have been collected by the USGS and various state agencies in the mid-Snake area since at least the early 1990s. However, no trend analyses have been conducted on the data since 2012. Assessing groundwater-quality trends will help resource managers determine if they should continue or modify current nutrient management practices. Groundwater-level...

Date published: April 10, 2019
Status: Completed

Groundwater Quality and Nutrient Trends near Marsing, Southwestern Idaho

In cooperation with the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, we sampled groundwater from 15 wells during spring 2018 near the city of Marsing in rural northwestern Owyhee County, southwestern Idaho. Samples were analyzed for field parameters, nutrients, trace elements, major inorganics, and dissolved gas, including methane. To examine trends in individual wells and in the region, ammonia...

Date published: September 23, 2017
Status: Active

Groundwater Flow Modeling - Idaho National Laboratory

Numerical models are being used to better understand the flow of groundwater and the transport of radiochemical and chemical constituents in the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer system.

The models, developed at the INL, afford scientists a framework to organize their knowledge and concepts of groundwater systems and to provide insights for water-resource managers for future water...

Contacts: Jason C Fisher
Date published: August 18, 2017
Status: Completed

Monitoring Mercury in Fish Tissue, Boise and Snake Rivers and Brownlee Reservoir

To meet National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting requirements, the City of Boise will be responsible for collecting fish tissue samples for mercury analysis upstream of and downstream of their wastewater treatment facilities discharging to the lower Boise and Snake Rivers.

Mercury is a naturally occurring element that ultimately makes its way into aquatic...

Date published: August 8, 2017
Status: Completed

Wood River Valley Aquatic Biology and Habitat Assessment

Blaine County’s population nearly quadrupled from about 5,700 to 22,000 people between 1970 and 2010. Residents and resource managers of the Wood River Valley of south-central Idaho are concerned about the potential effects that population growth and the expected increased demand for water might have on the quantity and quality of the valley’s ground and surface waters. Increased water use has...

Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Selenium in the Blackfoot River Watershed

The upper Blackfoot River receives runoff from 12 large phosphate mines. Shale waste rock that is a byproduct of mining is highly enriched in naturally occurring selenium. At optimal concentrations, selenium can be a positive nutrient and antioxidant in mammals and fish. At elevated concentrations, however, it can damage fish and animal immune systems. As early as 1996, livestock deaths...

Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Mercury Cycling in the Hells Canyon Complex

The Hells Canyon Complex (HCC) is the largest privately owned hydroelectric power complex in the United States. Upstream are millions of acres of irrigated agricultural lands and Idaho’s largest metropolitan area clustered around the state capital Boise. Downstream lie confluences with the Salmon and Clearwater Rivers, critical habitat for threatened bull trout and fall chinook salmon.

...

Date published: May 26, 2017
Status: Active

Coeur d'Alene Basin Water-Quality Monitoring

We partner with the EPA to conduct long-term water-quality and streamflow monitoring in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin, which has been widely impacted by historic mining activities.

Date published: January 1, 2017
Status: Completed

Effects of Nutrient Enrichment on Stream Ecosystems (Upper Snake River Basin NAWQA)

Nutrient enrichment can affect the ecological health of a stream. For example, excessive aquatic plant growth caused by increased nutrients can reduce dissolved oxygen necessary for other aquatic life. Topics of particular interest in this study area include:

seasonal patterns among nutrients, flows, algae and plants in streams

rooted aquatic plant vs. algae growth

stream...

Date published: January 1, 2017
Status: Completed

Surrogate Technologies for Estimating Suspended Sediment in the Snake and Clearwater Rivers

Because fluvial sediment poses both economic and ecological problems, resource managers need a safe, cost-effective way to measure sediment in streams, particularly in remote areas.

Contacts: Ryan L Fosness
Date published: January 1, 2017
Status: Completed

Lower Granite Reservoir Bathymetric and Underwater Video Surveys

Sedimentation of Lower Granite Reservoir, operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, affects commercial navigation and reservoir storage capacity. Some groups are concerned that dredging the reservoir to remove excess sediment may negatively affect endangered species such as steelhead and salmon.

Contacts: Ryan L Fosness