Determining the environmental health of the Yellow River entering Effigy Mounds National Monument

Primary Investigators

USGS Investigators: Shannon Meppelink

NPS Investigators: Susan Snow

Project Details

Start Year: 2024

Category: Synoptic

2024 2025
$75,000 $75,000
Project Location

NPS Park: Effigy Mounds NM

USGS Center: Central Midwest Water Science Center

States: IA

The environmental health of the Yellow River at EFMO is largely unknown. Water-quality monitoring is done at an upstream site, with sporadic measurements of organic contaminants, but these are not monitored frequently enough to obtain a true understanding of contaminant transport through the system.

This project assesses the environmental quality of the Yellow River as it enters EFMO. The project will collect stream water, bed sediment, and aquatic plant/fish tissue/invertebrate samples at the Yellow River as it enters the Monument. Samples will be collected in the spring, summer, and fall to capture variations by season, flow condition, and plant growth stage.

The sampling approach is designed to assess potential human exposure through the uptake of a variety of contaminants. This information is critical in determining the suitability of the Yellow River for harvesting culturally important plant species and informing future management decisions at the park.