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Lower Gallatin TPA Ecoli

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Escherichia coli is a non-pathogenic indicator bacteria that is used to evaluate the presence of fecal contamination in surface waters.  While the presence of e.coli does not prove or disprove the presence of harmful pathogenic bacteria, e.cloi presence correlates highly with the presence of fecal contamination and may be an indictor that other harmful bacteria are present.


In order to evaluate water quality conditions for e.coli, water quality sampling was conducted in 2008 and 2009 on streams listed as impaired for either fecal coliform or e.coli (see map below).  E.coli total maxiumum daily loads were developed for those streams not attaining water quality standards for e.coli.  The "Lower Gallatin Planning Area TMDLs  & Framework Water Quality Improvement Plan" written in 2013 contains those TMDLs and can be found on DEQ's Final TMDL Documents under the Upper Missouri tab.


Map 3.1 E.coli-Impaired Streams (in RED) in the Lower Gallatin TMDL Planning Area




E.coli data and reports consist of:

  1. Nutrient Sampling and Analysis Plans (SAPs)
  2. Electronic data files (Microsoft Excel format)
  3. Quality Assurance (QA) Reports
  4. Water Quality and Nutrient Source Summary reports


Reports are in .pdf format and require free Adobe Acrobat software.  Water quality data is in Microsoft Excel format, and can also be downloaded through the EPA's STORET Data Warehouse.  Table 3.1 below provides an annotated list of downloadable documents, data, and reports. (Note: data and reports are the same as the documents available in the Nutrient Pages, as nutrients and e.coli were colletced as part of the same effort.)




Table 3.1  E.coli Technical Assessments, Data and Reports


Document Description


2008 Nutrient & E.coli Sampling and Analysis Plan

SAP for water quality data collection in 2008.  Data collection included flow, field measurements, e.coli, and nutrient forms (TN, TP, NO3+NO2, NH3) and algal assessments at over 50 sites in the LGTPA.  Sampling maps and tables included.

August 2008 

2008 Water Quality Data

Excel file of water quality data and field measurements collected in 2008 (STORET format)

January 2009

2008 Water Quality Sampling:  Quality Assurance Review and Report

Quality Assurance report for 2008 sampling activity. 

March 2009

2008 Water Quality Summary Report

Water quality summary report describing methods and data results for 2008 sampling activity.

March 2009 

2009 Nutrient & E.coli Sampling and Analysis Plan

(addendum to 2008)

SAP for water quality data collection in 2009.  Data collection in 2009 included 2008 sites as well as additional sites sampled in 2009.

September 2009 

2009 Nutrient & E.coli Data

Excel file of water quality data and field mesurements collected in 2009 (EQuIS format)

December 2009

2009 Nutrient & E.coli QA Report

Quality Assurance report for 2009 sampling activity. 

December 2009 

2009 Water Quality Summary Report

Water quality summary report describing methods and data results for 2009 sampling activity.

April 2010 






Project Coordinator

Nutrient & E.coli Project Manager

Christian Schmidt, DEQ



Sediment Project Manager

Lisa Kusnierz, EPA



Greater Gallatin Watershed Council (GGWC) Coordinator

Sierra Harris, GGWC



DEQ Nonpoint Source Program

Contact for information & assistance on implementing water quality improvement projects

Robert Ray, DEQ




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