Central Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Conserving, Protecting and Restoring Coldwater Fisheries

 CWTU River Keepers 2014

Micheal A. Miller to speak at November 11 final River Keeper meal/meeting/program of 2014.

All CWTU River Keepers are encouraged to attend our 6:30 pm, November 11 program/meeting at the Fin 'N Feather in Winneconne.  River Keepers are also invited and encouraged to arrive at 5:15 to share a meal together.  This is a good time to discuss summer monitoring experiences.

  The program will feature author, biologist, and WDNR official Michael Miller presenting a program on stream ecology.  Miller is the co-author of the newly released Field Guide to Wisconsin Streams.  For more information call John Gremmer at 920-582-7802 or eMail at jgremmer@charter.net/.

Deb and Bob Jozwowski were awarded the River Keepers Of The Year award at the November 11 CWTU Banquet.  The Deb and Bob along with Lynn and Frank Druecke monitor three streams in central Wisconsin.  Bob also is a CWTU Board member.  Thanks Deb and Bob for all your good work!

The 2014 CWTU River Keepers' training session was held at Riverside Park in Waupaca on May 10.  People came from all over the state to be trained in the water monitoring process.  This is the ten year anniversary of our chapters first water monitoring efforts.  At this time the River Keepers have 33 teams monitoring around 40 sites in Wisconsin.

Central Wisconsin Trout Unlimited has been actively involved in water monitoring since 2004. We are working in partnership with the WDNR's Water Action Volunteers. Currently, we are monitoring 35 sites on rivers and streams in central Wisconsin.

CWTU River Keepers are looking for volunteers who would like to join their Central Wisconsin River Keepers group. Volunteers do not have to be Trout Unlimited members to participate. River Keepers are advocates for area streams, they monitor their streams once a month, they are watchdogs for invasive species and environmental problems, and they are organized into small teams that are responsible for specific streams. The program has been in existence for nine years and it has been conducted with the support of the University of Wisconsin Extension and the Wisconsin DNR.

While water monitoring, River Keepers record water temperature, stream turbidity, the amount of flow, habitat quality, bug life, and the amount of dissolved oxygen. This data is posted on the Water Action Volunteers website (http://watermonitoring.uwex.edu/wav), which is available for public use. The experince in fun and rewarding.

To listen to a KFIZ radio program on the CWTU Central Wisconsin River Keepers that Bob Haase and John Gremmer did on 3/18/2010--- CLICK HERE!

To sign up to become a River Keeper and to attend the training session contact John Gremmer (920-582-7802) or  Rick Fahrenkrug (920-725-0255).

Water Monitoring Recording sheets:  Need to run some off?  Go to:  http://watermonitoring.uwex.edu/wav/monitoring/sheets.html 

This summer our Waupaca River Team installed a temperature recording device in the river from May through September.  Here are the results in Centigrade.  We also installed one in the Waupaca River at the Rose Farm where the Waupaca River crosses Highway 10.  We had one temperature spike in July and you can see how the temperature starts dropping off in late August and into September.   John Gremmer

CWTU River Keepers' Rick Fahrenkrug Receives Monitor of the Year Award!

Rick Fahrenkrug with the Central Wisconsin Trout Unlimited River Keepers. Rick has volunteered his time as a co-leader of this program for the past five years. The River Keepers currently have 28 teams monitoring 35 sites in multiple counties in and around the Fox Valley. He has dedicated thousands of hours helping to energize this program. His efforts have included securing two grants, facilitating a middle school monitoring project, developing (and presenting on multiple occasions) a portable display to recruit volunteers and to share the River Keepers’ story, and working with an individual landowner to improve in-stream habitat after monitoring results sparked the landowners’ interest in doing so. Nominator John Gremmer noted one of Rick’s strengths is his personal relations with the volunteer monitors. The respect these people have for his efforts was evident in the letters of support received for his nomination. 

Above:  Rick Fahrenkrug receives award from Kris Stepenuck, Wisconsin Water Action Volunteer  Stream Monitoring Program Director, at the 2014 Annual Wisconsin Volunteer Stream Monitoring Symposium in Steven's Point.

Rick Fahrenkrug and I have been very busy this Winter promoting our CWTU River Keepers.  We have been presenting our story with the help of our new display board that we created.  We have been at the Fox Valley Trout Unlimited Cabin Fever Day, the Wisconsin Trout Unlimited State Council Banquet, and soon we will be at the State Water Monitoring Conference and CWTU's TroutFest '14.  We are looking forward to adding new teams to the 28 that already exist and finding new ways to involve people in our mission.

John Gremmer

These are the sites that the CWTU River Keepers monitored in central Wisconsin in 2013.

These are the streams that the CWTU River Keepers monitored in 2013.

This chart shows the amazing growth of the CWTU River Keepers.  Over the last four years we have increased the number of times we monitor by about 25% per year.

CWTU River Keeper Coordinator Honored

On May 5 CWTU River Keepers were honored when I received the 2013 Stream Monitoring Award In The Category Of Outstanding Volunteer from the UW-Extension and The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.  I accepted this award knowing that this is a shared award.  It is shared by all our volunteers who are doing such a good job of protecting and preserving our central Wisconsin waters by monitoring, watchdogging, and teaching others.

I thanked the wonderful Kris Stepenuck and her staff for making the Water Action Volunteers such a great program.  I also thanked CWTU for bankrolling our activities.  And finally, I thanked all our volunteers for their outstanding contributions.

I love being a River Keeper.  It is great fun to go to a stream once a month and gather information that will be used in the present and future to protect it.  For our Waupaca River Team, it is a nice social event too.

River Keepers is one of the great things our chapter does.  If you would like to be a River Keeper---call or email me.   920-582-7802  or  jgremmer@charter.net

John Gremmer

The Peterson/Siegel CWTU River Keeper team.  This team monitors Hartman and Emmons Creeks.  Phil Peterson is on the left and Butch Siegel is on the right.

The Lower Pine River/Saxeville on the Pine River CWTU River Keeper Team(from left, top, Erick KroppLoren Swanson, Ron Neuman, Grace Pable, David Pable, and kneeling Mike Sandretto.  This team has been monitoring for a number of years and the lower Pine River site is located on Ron Neuman's property.  We have three sites being monitored on the Pine River at this time.

FVTU's River Keeper Team monitors the South Branch of the Little Wolf and Peterson Creek.  From the left:  Dick Stielow, Tony Garvey, Keith Bassage, and Norm Christnacht

The Jarvenpaa/Peirce Team:  This team is new in 2013 and they monitor on the White River downstream of the dam on County YY.  Both James Peirce(left) and Frank Jaarvenpaa are active members of CWTU.  They are shown here at their site on the White River.

Sawyer Creek, Oshkosh River Keeper Team:  Sawyer Creek runs through agricultural areas southwest of Oshkosh, then through Oshkosh and the golf course, and eventually, it slowly dumps into the Fox River near the Hwy. 21 Bridge.  The team consists of(from the left) Boyd Gibbs, Kim Biederman, Doug Jarmusz, and Rick Levin.  Ryan Boynton, another team member, and the team data poster, was absent when the photo was made.

West Branch of the White River Team:  This new team starting this year consists of (left to right) Mike Schaefers, team leader, Abby SchaefersIra Giese, and Brian Schaefers.  On their first monitoring session they discovered a rich diversity of macroorganisms and crystal clear, cold water.

Fordham Creek Team:  Steve Deery, Coloma, second from left, established his CWTU River Keeper water monitoring site on Fordham Creek on June 4.  Steve is happy to be involved in the efforts to protect ground and surface water in his area.  Helping him get started on his first monitoring are(left to right) Andrew Aslesen, Sun Prairie, Mary Jo Vance, Pleasant Lake, Bill Vance, Pleasant Lake, and Rick Fahrenkrug, Neenah, and John Gremmer, not pictured. 

The Zaretzke-Mathys Riveer Keeper team is monitoring the Waupaca River above Waupaca.  This is their first year and they are very interested in learning about, and protecting the health of their river.  Both families live near, or on the Waupaca River.  From the left:  Gina Zaretzke, Dean Zaretzke, Rick Fahrenkrug(River Keeper Co-Coordinator and trainer), Linda Mathys, and Marty Mathys.

The Waupaca River Team(from left:  John Gremmer, Jan Brantingham, Nancy Rose, Bob Gayeske, and David Brantingham) monitors two sites on the Waupaca River---one at the Rose Farm, where the Waupaca River crosses Highway 10 and at Riverside Park on the east side of Waupaca.  (Missing from the image is Vance Linden, Tom Poullette, and Tom Young.)  Click HERE to see the data collected by this team at the Rose Farm on the Waupaca River.  To see the data collected on the Waupaca River at Riverside Park on the east side of Waupaca, click HERE!

The Jim and Pat Haun team:  This was our first year surveying the Middle Branch of the Embarrass River.  We found it interesting.  I found it fun.  We have lived on this river for ten years and have enjoyed its being there but we wanted to know more about its inner nature.  Doing the monthly surveys has allowed us to get to know the river and its inhabitants more personally.  We hope that our survey data will serve as a barometer of the rivers health.

Dakin Creek August 2012, suffering from greatly reduced flow due to drought. Eric Godfrey, the one-team Dakin Creek monitoring "team," is standing in it with Kris Stepnuck, WAV Coordinator. Kris was visiting as part of a study using several dozen streams to compare two different methods of measuring stream flow:  our measuring stick & tennis ball method (Eric's holding the net) versus a sophisticated electronic method (Kris is loaded up with the gear). Results can be surprisingly close if care is taken in measurement.

Here is the(from left to right) Pollock, Humphrey, Talin, and Haase CWTU River Keeper Team.  The team leader is Bob Haase, Jim Humphrey posts the data, Dick Pollock is a former River Keeper coordinator, and Jack Talin has been involved since the beginning of the program.  They monitor the Mecan River and Wedde Creek.

Meet the new 2012 Bill Vance CWTU River Keeper Team.  They are monitoring the upper Chaffee Creek near Pleasant Lake.   From the left, Bob Gayeske(trainer), Mary Jo Vance, Bill Vance, Cindy Halverson, and Steve Halverson.  We look forward to meeting them in person at the November meeting.

Bill Vance, Team Leader for Chaffee Creek, Marquette County

Bill is a retired teacher, farmer and lifetime fisherman who, half- jokingly, declares that he learned more in Boy Scouts than he did in Graduate School. Bill and his wife of forty years, Mary Jo, are part-time residents on Pleasant Lake, as are team members, Steve and Cindy. Bill currently sits on the board of Friends of the Central Sands, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting good stewardship of natural resources within the Central Sands Region. He is grateful for this opportunity to continue his education and to be part of such a great organization as River Keepers.

John Tucker's Pine River Team.  This team monitors at Aniwa Road and has added several new members this year.  This picture includes WAV Coordinator Kris Stepenuck who was assisting this team on this particular day.  We currently have three teams monitoring on the Pine River.  John's team is doing the upstream section.  From the left:  Kris Stepenuck, Dick Stielow, Rodger Surprise, and John Tucker.  Missing are Bill Shuster, Barry Osicka, and Jim Van Lankvelt.

Meet one of the five new CWTU River Keeper teams that have joined in 2012.  This is Tom Kleczka's team that is monitoring one mile below the Weyauwega Dam on the Waupaca River.  This team is disturbed by the draining of the Weyauwego Lake that has left tons of muck and debris along their one-time pristine river front.  The river is wide(110 feet) where they monitor and in July they recorded around 200 cfs flow.  We welcome this team and look forward to visiting with them at the November meeting.   Standing, from the left, Tom Kleczka, Rick Fahrenkrug(trainer), Kathy Lodes, Mary Fischer, and Andrew Lodes.   Kneeling is trainer Bob Gayeske.

Chris Northway's CWTU River Keeper Team:   From the left:  Chris Pinkall, Dave Edwards, Dave Johnson, and Chris Northway.  This team has been monitoring on Willow Creek. 

Allan Sanders started monitoring on Sucker Creek near his home this year.  He gets friends and relatives to help him do the monitoring.  Even though he recently broke his hand in two places, the accident did not stop him from monitoring.  Allan has been improving the stream as it runs through his property.  He recently caught a few trout in the stream.

Here is Bob Jozwowski's CWTU River Keeper Team out monitoring Willow Creek.  This team actually monitors three sites---the West Branch of the White River, Bird Creek, and the Willow Creek.  All members of the this team are veteran water monitors.  Recently they worked with Heather Smith and Kris Stepenuck of the DNR on the West Branch of the White River collecting data with a meter to compare with WAV flow calculation using tennis ball and stop watch.  Pictured from the left are Frank Druecke, Lynn Druecke, Deb Jozwowski, and Bob Jozwowski.  Jan Muldenhauer another team member was unable to make this session.

John Hartl(above) and Judy Hartl are a new River Keeper team this year.  They are monitoring the Killsnake River on the east side of Lake Winnebago.  We are very happy to have added them to our group.  They have expanded our area greatly.  We look forward to visiting with them at the November 13 Buffet/Celebration/Program.

Jeff Wegand's Pine River Team.  This veteran team monitors at Jack Zimmerman's property to continue to gain  historical data.  This from right to left is Dale Bargmann, Gene Retert and Jeff Wegand.  Dale brought is ORV which gave us a working table and made it easy to be organized at the stream.  Missing was Ron Neuman who also played very active roll when Dale and Gene were not able to attend.

From Jim Murphy's Peterson Creek Team:  “Hats off to Joe Price,” our project Superintendent,  who served our WAV team for many years before taking a new job out of the area.

David Seligman's West Branch of the White River Team:  From the left:  Bob Burke, Erik Kopp, Linn Beck, Dave Seligman, and Chris Northway.

Jim Murphy's Team that monitors Peterson Creek.  From the left Brad, Joe Price, Robert Jorgens(the land owner), and Greg Morlock.  Rick Fahrenkrug took the picture(so is absent from the image) and Jim Murphy was absent.  Joe Price has moved out of the area.  They end each session with a round of malt beverages.

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