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Water Resources Investigations Report 03-4285

Background and Comparison of Water-Quality Streambed-Sediment, and Biological Characteristics of Streams in the Viburnum Trend and the Exploration of Study Areas, in Southern Missouri, 1995 and 2001

By: Suzanne R. Femmer, U.S. Geological Survey


Missouri has a long history of lead mining in the Park Hills and Viburnum Trend areas. Lead ore production has been a significant economic presence since the settlement of Missouri in the 1700's. As lead sources are depleted in active mining areas, new areas are being explored for economical ore bodies. The exploration area south of Winona, a possible extension of the Viburnum Trend lead-producing area, lies in an area of intense interest because of its scenic beauty and sensitive environment.

Water-quality, streambed-sediment, fish tissue, instream and riparian habitat, and invertebrate-community samples were collected from three sites in the Viburnum Trend for the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) program Black River synoptic study in 1995 and from four sites in the exploration study area in 2001. The samples, which were collected using NAWQA protocols, were analyzed and compared to establish background conditions and similarities between sites.

Bacteria, lead, and zinc concentrations were substantially different between the study areas. Habitat characteristics, such as streambed substrate size and embeddedness were similar. The Eleven Point River at Turner's Mill is substantially larger in size than the other six surveyed sites. Trace element concentrations in fish tissue samples collected in the two study areas are similar. Samples from both areas had elevated mercury levels. Invertebrate community data indicated similarity among the Viburnum Trend study area sites, but these sites had little in common with the exploration study area sites. The invertebrate community structure in the exploration study area were not similar.




Purpose and Scope

Description of Study Area

Methods of Study

Site Selection

Sampling Methods

Statistical Methods

Background Characteristics and Statistical Comparisons

Water Quality

Streambed Sediment

Biological Characteristics

Fish Tissue

Habitat Characteristics

Invertebrate Community




  1. Maps showing study areas, stream-water quality, streambed-sediment, and biological sampling sites for investigation of background characteristics
  2. Photograph showing aquatic invertebrates, such as the Hellgrammite, were surveyed as part of the biological investigation
  3. Photographs showing Big Spring and Greer Spring, two large springs with recharge areas in the exploration area
  4. Photograph showing the Eleven Point River at Turner’s Mill sampling site, looking downstream, 2001
  5. Photograph showing Hurricane Creek at the Ozark Trail sampling site, looking downstream, 2001
  6. Graph showing bacteria density at the sampled sites, 1995 and 2001
  7. Hierarchal clustering using Euclidean distances and single linkages for invertebrate community data collected in the Viburnum Trend and exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001


  1. Water-quality data from sites sampled in the Viburnum Trend and the exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001
  2. Streambed-sediment data from sites sampled in the Viburnum Trend and the exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001
  3. Trace element concentrations in fish tissue samples from the Virburnum Trend and the exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001
  4. Habitat characteristics of sites sampled in the Viburnum Trend and the exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001
  5. Abundance and diversity data for invertebrate samples in the Viburnum Trend and the exploration study areas, 1995 and 2001
  6. Pearson correlation matrix for invertebrate samples collected from each sampling site


Vertical coordinate information is referenced to the National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 (NGVD 29). Elevation, as used in this report, refers to distance above or below NGVD 29. NGVD 29 can be converted to the North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88) by using the National Geodetic Survey conversion utility available at URL

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For more information about USGS activities in Missouri contact:


U.S. Geological Survey

Missouri Water Science Center

1400 Independence Road

Rolla, Missouri 65401

Telephone: (573) 308-3667

Fax: (573) 308-3645

or access the USGS Missouri Water Science Center home page at:

U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
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Last modified: Wednesday, December 07 2016, 01:27:54 PM
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