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Water-quality assessment of the Merced River, California, in the 1977 water year

Water-Resources Investigations Report 80-75

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Abstract

Water-quality conditions in the Merced River in California were sampled four times during the 1977 water year at 12 stations on the river and its major impoundments. Samples taken at the record or near-record low flows of the 1976-77 drought, showed that calcium and bicarbonate were the predominant ions in the water. Inflow of irrigation return water to the river caused a threefold to sevenfold increase in specific conductance between river kilometer 42 and the farthest downstream station at kilometer 8. During the four sampling periods, the increase in total nitrogen concentrations was twofold to sixfold in that reach. Upstream of kilometer 42, the river was free of apparent water-quality degradation, with the exception of occasional increases in nitrogen and phosphorus. Measurements of primary productivity and phytoplankton in Lake McClure and at three river stations gave indications of trophic conditions in the river system. (USGS)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Water-quality assessment of the Merced River, California, in the 1977 water year
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
80-75
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1981
Language:
ENGLISH
Description:
v, 31 p. : ill., maps ; 28 cm.