Upper Fox River/Flint Creek Watershed 6-11 March 2010
2007 survey (LCHD 2007). Algal blooms have been noted after herbicide treatments following a decline in
plant density (LCHD 2007). Algaecide treatments are also used in Tower Lake to control blooms.
Tower Lake is also listed as impaired due to excessive bacteria concentrations. Fecal coliform was measured
in Tower Lake during 2001. Sixteen samples were collected from Tower Lake; two samples were collected
on three occasions in May, two in June and July and once in August. Values in Tower Lake ranged from 10
to 820 cfu/100 ml (Figure 5-4). Five samples (31%) contained concentrations above the 200 cfu/100 ml
WQS. Exceedences occurred in May and June.
E. coli, another pathogen indicator species, was also sampled within Tower Lake during May through August
in 2002 through 2007 (Appendix B). Although Illinois does not have a numerical standard for E. coli, the US
EPA document “Ambient Water Quality Criteria for Bacteria – 1986” states a freshwater bathing criteria of a
geometric mean from five samples within a 30 day period not exceed 126 cfu/100 ml (US EPA 1986). During
this period 98 samples were collected in Tower Lake. Samples were collected twice per day up to three times
per month. Seven percent of the individual Tower Lake samples exceeded the E. coli level of 126 cfu/100 ml .
These values, however, were individual exceedances and at no time was the geomean standard violated. E.
coli data for these impaired segments are presented in Figure 5-5.
Sources of phosphorus entering Tower Lake, according to the LMU, include stormwater runoff carrying
fertilizers and geese feces into the lake. Although not specifically mentioned in the LMU report, resuspension
of nutrient rich sediment are also a potential source of phosphorus as well as pet feces and septic tanks.
Sources of bacteria also include stormwater runoff and geese feces. There are no active NPDES discharges
in the Tower Lake watershed.
6.10 Lake Barrington
Lake Barrington is located just south of Tower Lake in the unincorporated Cuba Township (Figure 2-2). Lake
Barrington is a 91 acre man-made lake formed by damming a depressional area in 1925. Maximum and mean
depths are 13.0 and 7.8 feet respectively. The lake is owned by the Lake Barrington Shores Homeowners
Association and is used for viewing, non-motorized boating, fishing and golf course irrigation.
The Lake Barrington watershed is small (191 acres) relative to lake area (2:1) and as a result has a long
retention time (6.2 years) (LCHD 2007). Lake Barrington receives water from an inlet on Forest Preserve Land
and stormwater drainage outlets. The watershed is primarily residential (35%) and open space (20%). The
shoreline is primarily developed (74%) and consists mainly of rip rap (73%). Impervious cover is relatively high
(16%) above the level where water quality impairments are likely.
The LMU 2007 Summary Report of Lake Barrington (LCHD 2007) notes that Lake Barrington was slightly
stratified in August 2007, but is generally well mixed. DO concentrations dropped below 5.0 mg/L in August
(below 2’) and September (entire water column) 2007. Anoxia was observed in depths greater than 4’ in
Lake Barrington is listed as impaired due to excessive TP concentrations. Total phosphorus data for Lake
Barrington are available for 1989, 2001 and 2007 from Lake County. Surface water TP concentrations for this
time period ranged from 0.01 to 0.18 mg/L, with an average of 0.10 mg/L (Table 5-2, Figure 5-6, Appendix E).
Sixty seven percent of the averaged surface samples were above the 0.05 mg/L WQS. In 2007, the average
surface concentration was 0.07 mg/L and ranged from <0.01 - 0.11 mg/L.
Eutrophic lakes are typically algal or rooted plant dominated; rarely does co-dominance exist due to
competition for resources. Lake Barrington, however, experiences both partly due to artificial manipulation. In
the 1980’s, curly leaf pondweed covered the entire bottom surface of Lake Barrington. Herbicide applications
and mechanical harvesting began in an attempt to control this species and another invasive - Eurasian
watermilfoil. Planting of natives occurred in the 1990’s in an attempt to increase native plant density. In 2001,
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