Physical, chemical, and biological data were collected at 46 sites in the Fox and Des Plaines River Basins as part of the upper Illinois River Basin study of the U.S. Geological Survey?s National Water-Quality Assessment Program. The data, collected from 1999 to 2001, will be used to determine the effects of urbanization on streams in the Chicago, Illinois, metropolitan area. To examine the possible effects of urbanization on stream-water quality, the sampling sites were selected to represent a gradient of land use changing from agriculture into urban. Urban land use for the selected sites ranged from less than 1 percent urban to 92 percent urban.
Data-collection methods are presented in the text portion of this report. Physical characteristics of the stream that were collected include descriptive and qualitative habitat and geomorphic measures. Water samples were analyzed for nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus), 11 major ions, 46 wastewater indicators, pH, and specific conductance. Aquatic communities were sampled to identify and quantify populations of selected algae, benthic macroinvertebrates, and fish. There were 72 unique fish species collected at all of the sites. The number of benthic macroinvertebrate taxa collected at all the sites ranged from 15 to 48. The data and the associated data documentation are presented on a CD-ROM included with this report.