Category Archives: Quality

Trashjam cleanup, Knights Ferry to Nankin, Withlacoochee River 2022-12-03

Clean up trash jams on the balmy blackwater Withlacoochee River. Looks like the weather will be almost 80 degrees. We will definitely get in a swim or two.

When: Gather 9 AM, Paddle 10 AM, End 3 PM, Saturday, December 3, 2022

Put In: Knights Ferry Boat Ramp, 6499 Knights Ferry Rd, Valdosta, GA 31601.

GPS: 30.71205, -83.45554

[Trash composite 2022-11-26]
Trash composite 2022-11-26

Continue reading

Clean rivers 2022-11-17

All test results good, no rain, no sewage spill reports: happy fishing, swimming, and boating this weekend!

[Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide]
Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide

I hate to be right, but when I warned last Friday that the rain the day before would probably wash contamination into the creeks and rivers, Valdosta’s testing that Friday caught the contamination. US 41, GA 133, and even US 84 showed far too much E. coli, with Fecal coliform at US 41 and GA 133 ten times the E. coli. Knights Ferry also showed E. coli higher than the one-time test limit.

By the time WWALS tested Sunday, most of that had already washed downstream or gotten diluted. We did still see high results at Franklinville and Langdale Park on the Withlacoochee River, and at several creek locations. Continue reading

Creeks bad, OK River Water Quality 2022-11-13

Apparently the rain Thursday did not have much effect, although there were E. coli hot spots when we tested again Sunday. The Withlacoochee River from GA 133 on down seems OK for swimming, fishing, and boating, although there’s not much water until you get farther down than that.

[Chart, Creeks and Rivers, Swim Guide, 2022-11-13]
Chart, Creeks and Rivers, Swim Guide, 2022-11-13

Looks like the Withlacoochee River is also OK from Skipper Bridge on down, except Langdale Park Boat Ramp tested very high. Also, upstream Franklinville Landing was too high. Continue reading

Good river water quality, but rain 2022-11-10

Update 2022-11-15: Creeks bad, mostly OK River Water Quality 2022-11-13.

For once my recommendation is not directly based on the most recent water quality test results, rather on the weather. Because of the recent rain, I wouldn’t paddle on the Withlacoochee or Little Rivers except downstream from the GA-FL line. The Alapaha and Suwannee will probably be OK.

[Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide]
Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide

All WWALS water quality results for Thursday are pretty clean, with several of them actually showing zero E. coli. No new sewage spills have been reported in the Suwannee River basin in Georgia or Florida (yet). Valdosta did get high numbers at US 41 and GA 133 on the Withlacoochee River last week, but their Monday results (the most recent we’ve seen from them) are normal. Continue reading

Florida Right to Clean Water: get petition signatures for court review 2022-11-10

Floridians, now’s the time to get the petition through the first hurdle: Florida Supreme Court review by March 1, 2023. 223,000 signatures is doable if enough people help.

If you’re a registered Florida voter, go here and sign the petition:
https://www.floridarighttocleanwater.org/

[Unite for Clean Water flyer]

And join the campaign:
https://www.floridarighttocleanwater.org/uniteforcleanwater

Individuals, groups, businesses, or non-profits: all can help get constitutional protection for our rivers, creeks, springs, sinks and swamps, not to mention drinking water.

More about Right to Clean Water in Florida and Georgia here:
https://wwals.net/issues/right-to-clean-water/

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!
https://wwals.net/donations/

Creek and river water quality problems 2022-11-03

Update 2022-11-11: Good river water quality, but rain 2022-11-10.

Downstream of the Little River Confluence should be fine for boating, swimming, or fishing in the Withlacoochee River this weekend, and apparently same for the Little and Alapaha Rivers.

On the Withlacoochee River, I got a high E. coli result at Langdale Park Boat Ramp, but there’s not enough water to paddle there anyway.

No new sewer spills have been reported in the Suwannee River Basin in Georgia or Florida.

[Chart, Creeks and Rivers, Swim Guide 2022-11-03]
Chart, Creeks and Rivers, Swim Guide 2022-11-03

WWALS tested 23 sites yesterday: the usual 1 on the Alapaha River, 2 on the Little River, and 9 on the Withlacoochee River and 11 on its upstream creeks Cat Creek, Beatty Branch, and Beaverdam Creek, plus Sugar Creek.

We are trying to find the source of the high E. coli Valdosta keeps finding at US 41 and GA 133 on the Withlacoochee River. Continue reading

Video: Summary of water quality testing at Lowndes County Commission 2022-10-11

Most of the Lowndes County Commissioners were not familiar with the water quality testing WWALS is doing, and now they are.

[Summary of WWALS water quality testing @ LCC 2022-10-11]
Summary of WWALS water quality testing @ LCC 2022-10-11

Here’s the video:


Video: Summary of water quality testing at Lowndes County Commission 2022-10-11
Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman at Lowndes County Commission, Tuesday, October 11, 2022.
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE)

For more detail about WWALS water quality testing, see:
https://wwals.net/issues/testing/

I was there to suggest that Lowndes County might want to participate in a grant application. The county later declined to participate, as did the City of Valdosta. So Valdosta State University (VSU) and WWALS applied anyway. We shall see.

FYI, the Graphical Information System (GIS) I refered to is https://www.knowyourriver.com/, which was started by Savannah Riverkeeper using the same GA-EPD Seed Grant funds we have applied for this year.

The Suwannee-Satilla Regional Water Planning Council (SSRWPC) is meeting tomorrow morning in Tifton, Wednesday, November 2, 2022. If you are an outfitter or have something to say about river water levels, you are invited to inform the Council on that subject.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!
https://wwals.net/donations/

Bad Beatty Branch and Cat Creek, good downstream Withlacoochee River 2022-10-27

Update 2022-11-04: Creek and river water quality problems 2022-11-03.

After a drizzle of rain Wednesday and several high readings by Valdosta at US 41 and GA 133, WWALS tested upstream creeks yesterday, in addition to the usual river locations. Some of the creek results are much higher than expected.

[Chart, Creeks, Rivers, Swim Guide]
Chart, Creeks, Rivers, Swim Guide

So far, it looks like downstream of the Little River Confluence on the Withlacoochee River is probably good for fishing, swimming, and boating.

There’s not enough water in the Withlacoochee higher up to paddle anyway. But I’ll have four more Withlacoochee River results tomorrow to fill in the upstream gaps. Continue reading

Franklinville, Skipper Bridge, Langdale Park, GA 133, Withlacoochee River WQ 2022-10-27

Yesterday I went to five water quality testing sites and sampled four of them. Results tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Elizabeth Brunner sampled nine sites on Cat Creek, Beatty Branch, and Beaverdam Creek. If nothing else we should have a good baseline to use in deciphering what is causing the E. coli and Fecal coliform that keeps showing up at US 41 and GA 133.

And inquiring minds want to know: what happened to all the trees at the entrance to Langdale Park?

[4.5 sites, Withlacoochee River, 2022-10-27]
4.5 sites, Withlacoochee River, 2022-10-27

Toms Branch

No water in Toms Branch, so no sample. Continue reading

Clean water quality, Withlacoochee, Little, Alapaha, Rivers 2022-10-20

Update 2022-10-28: Bad Beatty Branch and Cat Creek, good downstream Withlacoochee River 2022-10-27.

All the WWALS water quality results for this Thursday were pretty clean. We have nothing new on GA 133 since Valdosta’s Monday results there were bad. My guess is whatever that was has probably washed away by now, but we don’t know.

So I’d say probably OK for swimming, boating, and fishing this weekend.

Come on down to the State Line Boat Ramp for the WWALS Boomerang paddle race, from Georgia into Florida and back!
https://wwals.net/pictures/boomerang2022

[Chart, River, Swim Guide]
Chart, River, Swim Guide

No new sewage spills have been reported in the Suwannee River Basin in Georgia or Florida.

The only bad spot is that Monday GA 133 result in the Valdosta data. That upstream incident that started last week. It may have been caused by upstream rain on Thursday, October 12, 2022. What it washed into the Withlacoochee River is a mystery that we are working on resolving. Continue reading