Changes in the Wisconsin River and its Floodplain

Monica G. Turner, Emily H. Stanley, Matthias Bürgi and David J. Mladenoff

in The Vanishing Present: Wisconsin's Changing Lands, Waters, and Wildlife

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print September 2008 | ISBN: 9780226871714
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226871745 | DOI:
Changes in the Wisconsin River and its Floodplain

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This chapter traces the ecological history of the Wisconsin River. Land uses along this river's long watershed have changed dramatically over the past 200 years. This “hardest working river in America” has also experienced radical changes in response to all the dams and levees that have been constructed in and along it to control water flows and limit flooding. Together, these changes have altered sediment flows, nutrient loads, and water quality with effects extending all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. Changes in flooding and nutrients have also greatly altered floodplain vegetation with reciprocal effects on water quality.

Keywords: land uses; sediment flows; nutrient loads; water quality; flooding; floodplain vegetation

Chapter.  6656 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biodiversity and Conservation Biology

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