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Water Quality of Lakes, Ponds, and Wetlands

Monitoring Water QualitySecchi disk.jpg

The City monitors the water quality of lakes, ponds, and wetlands in several ways. Reports for several lakes can be found on the menu on the left.

Photo at right: Volunteer measures water clarity with a Secchi (sek'-ee) disk. The depth at which the disk is no longer visible gives the water's clarity reading.

Citizen Scientists

Volunteers are vital to Burnsville's water quality data collection efforts on lakes and wetlands. Two programs provide valuable data to the City so it can make appropriate water management decisions.

Dakota County's Wetland Health Evaluation Program (WHEP) program utilizes volunteer citizen scientists to gather data about wetlands. Visit the WHEP website to see wetland monitoring reports and to learn how you can become part of the Burnsville WHEP team!

Volunteers in the Metropolitan Council's Citizen-Assisted Monitoring Program (CAMP) monitor eight Burnsville lakes, including, Crystal, Keller, Lac Lavon, Alimagnet, Sunset Pond, South Twin, Earley, and Wood Pond. They collect water samples and data such as water clarity and temperature. To see the CAMP lake water quality reports, please visit the CAMP website.

Below is a table the summarizes the CAMP water clarity data collected in the past several years, as well as averages and goals for each lake. Water clarity indicates how far sunlight penetrates into the water column and can be a good indicator of lake health.

Summary of Lake Clarity Measurements (depth measured in meters)

LAKE 2014 2015 2016 3-Year Avg. GOAL
Alimagnet 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.8 1.3
Crystal 2.3 2.2 2.2 2.2 2.1
Earley 1.4 1.8 1.7 1.6 1.7
Keller 0.8 0.7 1.0 0.8 1.8
Lac Lavon 4.0 4.2 4.4 4.2 3.6
Sunset Pond 2.2 1.4 1.8 1.8 1.7
Twin South 2.1 1.8 1.9 1.9 1.4
Wood Pond 1.3 2.5 1.8 1.9 1.7

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