2020-05-01: Yes, water quality was much worse that weekend, but then, Withlacoochee River good despite dirty creek 2020-05-01.
Five inches of rain Thursday in Brooks and Lowndes Counties means the next water quality results will probably be worse than these charts.
Valdosta’s upstream Withlacoochee River results were pretty good for Wednesday, April 22, 2020, and Madison Health’s downstream results were quite good for Monday, April 20. However, Valdosta’s results were significantly higher at the state line than Madison Health’s, and not very good at Nankin and worse at Knights Ferry. Monday Valdosta got a bad reading on Okapilco Creek and not very good on Wednesday. There is some question as to where Valdosta is sampling Okapilco Creek, but that’s another story.
WWALS will be sampling today so as to have some results tomorrow. You can help by donating for water quality collection supplies.
The rain that came through mid-afternoon yesterday, Thursday, April 23, 2020, included several tornados, one of which hit Adel, Georgia, which is very unfortunate. But what’s going to affect water quality is rainwater washing E. coli into the creeks and the Withlacoochee River.
Thursday and Friday a week ago, April 16 and 17, results were not good, and that was after less than an inch of rain Wednesday last week. We got better results last Saturday, April 18, but they didn’t last after a bit more rain.
With five inches of rain this time, don’t be surprised if the next results are much worse.
And don’t be surprised if there are some spikes in E. coli downstream of FL 6 and Madison Blue Spring, on the Withlacoochee and the Suwannee Rivers, since that has happened before, apparently due to something washing into those rivers in Florida.
But we won’t know, will we? Because Florida is no longer testing downstream of FL 6.
Maybe you’d like to ask FDEP and your elected officials to get regular river testing going all the way to the Gulf.
After all, if Valdosta can test three times a week all the way to the state line, the great state of Florida can test from there on down.
Meanwhile, WWALS will continue testing, and remember you can help.
You can also pick up some trash, if you’re at one of our creeks or rivers in the Suwannee River Basin, and post pictures or video with hashtag #SuwanneeCleanup. See Video: Waterkeepers Florida toast Earth Day 2020-04-22.
Picking up trash won’t help reduce E. coli in our waterways, but it will make them less trashy.
-jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®
You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!