Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve Upcoming Events

There are a number of upcoming events hosted by the Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, including:

  • 1/22/2020, 6:30-8 pm – Ecology Book Club at Cedar Creek
  • 2/11/2020, 11:30 am-1 pm – Lunch with a Scientist: Nutrient Alteration
  • 2/18/2020, 12-1 pm – Monthly Forestry Webinar
  • 2/22/2020, 11 am-12 pm – Animals in Winter at the Johnsville Library
  • 2/26/2020, 6:30-8 pm – Ecology Book Club at Cedar Creek
  • 3/10/2020, 11:30 am-1 pm – Lunch with a Scientist: Climate Change
  • 3/17/2020, 12-1 pm – Monthly Forestry Webinar
  • 3/19/2020, 11 am-12:30 pm – Spring Equinox Hike
  • 3/25/2020, 6:30-8 pm – Ecology Book Club at Cedar Creek
  • 3/28/2020, 7:30-10 pm – Spring Star Party

More information can be found in the Winter 2020 issue of the Field Notes newsletter. Newsletters can be found here.

Chloride Salt Learning Tool

“What happens when salt gets in our water sources?”

Check out this new learning tool developed by graduate students! The tool illustrates how chloride salts from water softeners and winter application can affect infrastructure and vehicles, health, the environment, and pets and how you can reduce the salt in our water.

Save Your Bait, Save Our Lakes

As the weather gets colder, ice anglers are gearing up for the winter fishing action. While you are packing up all the equipment you will need for the fishing trip, don’t forget your bait. While there are many types of bait on the market now, many anglers still prefer live bait over many others. The question is, what do you do with your bait after your fishing trip is over? Do you dump it in the trash, dump it in the lake, or let it freeze on the ice? There are many ways to dispose of live bait after the fishing trip is over. Some humane, some help others, and some are illegal. Did you know it is illegal to release live bait into Minnesota waters? There is a hefty fine attached, so instead of releasing live bait into the fishing hole, consider some other options: take bait home to reuse for a future trip, give it to another angler to use, or throw them away in the trash. By releasing live bait into Minnesota waters, you could be spreading aquatic invasive species into the environment. Invasive carp can often be used for common fishing bait and can be spread by anglers when they release their minnows into the water. Crayfish is another fishing bait that can also be invasive and cause problems with our lakes. There are a couple species of Crayfish that are invasive and causing fish habitat problems here in Minnesota. Join many others by helping save our lakes from invasive species by not releasing your live bait into our valued Minnesota waters.


— This article was submitted by Jessica Abarca, Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator, Anoka County Parks

North & East Metro Groundwater Management Area Update

The DNR has designated an area in the north and east portions of the metro region as the North & East Metro Groundwater Management Area (GWMA), which includes Washington and Ramsey counties, along with portions of Anoka and Hennepin counties. The Anoka County communities in this GWMA are Blaine, Centerville, Circle Pines, Columbia Heights, Columbus, Fridley, Hilltop, Lexington, Lino Lakes, and Spring Lake Park. The designation as a GWMA “allows a more comprehensive and focused approach to ensuring that groundwater supplies remain adequate to meet human needs, while protecting lakes, streams and wetlands”.

The DNR and an Advisory Team created a 5-year management plan in 2015 and continue to meet semi-annually to update each other on the various projects going on within the GWMA. The group last met on December 13, 2019 and discussed a variety of information, including:

  • A recently launched study that will assess the feasibility of enhancing groundwater recharge
  • An update on the White Bear Lake court case
  • An update on the transient groundwater flow model developed for the White Bear Lake area
  • An update on the 3M settlement project.

Click here to read the full update from the DNR. Previous updates from the DNR can be found here.

For more information on the GWMA, click here to view it’s website. The group will meet next in the Spring of 2020. Meetings are open to the public and an announcement will be posted on both the GWMA’s site and Know the Flow when the date, time, and location have been determined.

UMN Extension Hiring Watershed Extension Educator

The University of Minnesota Extension is hiring a Watershed Extension Educator! Please see the message below:

“We are hiring an Extension educator with faculty rank to focus on helping communities and watershed address their water management challenges. The educator will collaborate with diverse organizations to identify, develop, implement, and evaluate educational programs that will have a measurable impact on water resources by engaging with water professionals, policy-makers, farmers, land managers, and others across the state.


Required qualifications include:

  • A master’s degree in natural or water resources sciences, hydrology, lakes management, limnology, watershed science and management, or closely related field.
  • Experience and education in watershed management, lakes and aquatic ecosystems systems, hydrology, limnology, natural resources management, or related disciplines.
  • A proven ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships and collaborations with colleagues, partners, and stakeholders, including those that may have diverse missions, goals, cultures, and backgrounds (e.g., regional water managers, community officials, legislators, program participants, and industry groups).
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • A demonstrated ability using technology to enhance learning.
  • A valid driver’s license and own means of transportation, and applicable vehicle insurance.
  • Use of personal cell phone.

The position will be based in one of the UMN Extension regional offices outside of the metro area, based on candidate preference and available space.


More information and instructions for applying can be found at the job posting or by visiting https://humanresources.umn.edu/content/find-job and searching for Job ID 334924.


The initial application deadline is February 3, 2020.

For questions about this position, contact Jodi DeJong-Hughes, Extension Educator – Water Resources, dejon003@umn.edu

For questions about applying online, contact Tiffany McMillan, Extension Human Resources, tiffmcm@umn.edu

NO Well Water Samples Accepted Week of 12/23


Due to laboratory closure, Anoka County Environmental Services will NOT be accepting well water samples 12/23 or 12/24. Starting 12/30, samples will again be accepted as usual (Mondays 8 am to 4:15 pm and Tuesdays 8 to 11:45 am). You will still be able to pick up test kits (empty bottles and collection instructions).

Please call 763-324-4260 will any questions or concerns regarding Anoka County’s Well Water Testing Program.

EPA Considers Regulating Perchlorate

Minnesota systems are unlikely to be affected.

The following article was posted in the Winter 2019-2020 edition of Waterline, a quarterly newsletter related to public water systems in Minnesota published by the Minnesota Department of Health’s Drinking Water Protection Program.

“The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing a maximum contaminant level (MCL) and MCL goal (MCLG) for perchlorate of 0.056 parts per million (ppm). Perchlorate is a chemical compound from commercially produced sales. The EPA has been studying perchlorate because of potential contamination to water, which can reduce hormone production in the thyroid gland.

The EPA is proposing requirements for water systems to conduct monitoring and reporting for perchlorate and to provide information about perchlorate to their consumers through public notification and consumer confidence reports. It includes a list of treatment technologies that would enable water systems to comply with the MCL, including affordable compliance technologies for small systems serving 10,000 persons or fewer.

The EPA is also considering and has sought public comments on instead setting the MCL and MCLG at 0.018 ppm or at 0.090 ppm.

Another alternative is to not regulate perchlorate in drinking water based on new information that perchlorate does not occur in public water systems with a frequency and at levels of public-health concern.

The Minnesota Department of Health tested some community water systems in the state under the first Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule in the early 2000s; it found no detections over 0.018 ppm. As a result, the department does not anticipate many, if any, MCL violations among public water systems in the state, even if a standard is adopted.”

You can view the whole newsletter and/or subscribe to The Waterline here.

New Impaired Waters List

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is required to publish a list of impaired waters in the state every two years. The draft 2020 list is available here and public comments will be accepted until January 20th, 2020. Public meetings have been scheduled, with one in St. Paul (520 Lafayette Road N, St. Paul, MN 55155) on December 19th, 2019 at 1 pm. The impaired waters can also be viewed with the impaired waters viewer (IWAV) interactive map. This year’s list includes 581 new impairments.

Anoka County water bodies listed in the 2020 impaired waters inventory include:

  • Coon Lake
  • Linwood Lake
  • Martin Lake
  • Sunrise River, West Branch
  • Typo Lake
  • Bald Eagle Lake
  • Baldwin Lake
  • Cedar Creek
  • Centerville Lake
  • Clearwater Creek
  • Coon Creek
  • County Ditch 17
  • Crooked Lake
  • Crooked Brook
  • East Moore Lake
  • East Twin Lake
  • Lake George
  • George Watch Lake
  • Golden Lake
  • Ham Lake
  • Mahoney Brook
  • Marshan Lake
  • Mississippi River
  • Otter Lake
  • Peltier Lake
  • Reshanau Lake
  • Rice Lake
  • Rice Creek
  • Rum River
  • Sand Creek
  • Sandy Lake
  • Seelye Brook
  • Silver Lake
  • Trott Brook

For more information on defining impaired waters, click here.

WDE Landfill Update – Drum Layer Removal Complete

The WDE Landfill is a closed hazardous waste pit in Andover that is managed by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA).

For background information and the history of the WDE landfill, click here.

Site clean-up began this past summer of 2019. Below is the most recent update on the project from the MPCA:

“On October 10, 2019 the WDE Landfill reached a significant milestone when crews completed removal of the drum layer in the hazardous waste pit. The drum layer excavation is the most complex portion of the project and presented the highest risk. We are pleased this task was completed safely and without incident. The following was removed:

  • 1,425 empty or non-intact drums
  • 397 drums with recoverable contents
  • 225 cubic yards of empty drums
  • 4,270 tons of non-hazardous soil
  • 1,080 tons of hazardous waste soil

This project is on track to excavate the pit and fill with clean soil as well as remove the temporary enclosure by Thanksgiving. Final transport of the removed soils will likely continue through the end of the calendar year.”

For more information, click here to reach the project website.

Reminder: AIS Prevention Aid Program Stakeholder Meeting This Week

The Anoka County Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) team will be leading a stakeholder meeting to discuss the AIS Prevention Aid Program. They will summarize this year’s activities and discuss what the program may look like moving forward. Please join them to share your constructive insights and comments.

The meeting will be held this Thursday, November 21st from 2-3:30 pm at the Bunker Hills Activities Center (Maple Room).

Agenda Items:

  1. Welcome and Summary of County AIS Program for 2019
  2. Review Draft for 2020 AIS Prevention Aid Guidelines
  3. Identify Gaps in the Guidelines and Explore Additional Needs and Ideas to Improve the AIS Prevention Aid Program
  4. Wrap-Up and Adjourn

Let Jessica Abarca (Anoka County Parks Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator) know if you have any questions about the meeting or the program. She can be reached at Jessica.Abarca@co.anoka.mn.us or 763-324-3333.

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