Water levels in observation wells in Nebraska during 1956
Open-File Report 57-61
Prepared in cooperation with the Conservation and Survey Division of the University of Nebraska, and as part of the program of the Department of the Interior for development of the Missouri River Basin
- C.F. Keech
The Objective of the observation-well program in Nebraska is to provide an evaluation of the status of the ground-water supplies. Many uses tor water-level data are known but not all potential uses can be foreseen. Among the important uses are the following:
(1) To indicate the status of ground water in storage or in transit and the availability or supplies.
(2) To show the trend of ground-water supplies and the outlook tor the future.
(3) To estimate or forecast the base flow of streams.
(4) To indicate areas in which the water level is approaching too close to the land surface (water-logging) or is receding toward economic limits of lift or toward impairment by water of poor quality.
(5) To provide long-term evidence for evaluating the effectiveness of land-management and water-conservation programs in relation to water conservation actually effected, and for use in basin or "watershed" studies.
(6) To provide long-term continuous records to serve as a framework to which short-term records collected during intensive investigation may be related.
The water level in an observation well functions as a gage to indicate the position or the water table. The water table is defined as the upper surface of the zone of saturation except where that surface is formed by overlying impermeable materials. The water table is also the boundary between the zone of saturation and the zone of aeration. It is not a level surface but is a sloping surface that has many irregularities, and it often conforms in a general way to the land surface. The irregularities are caused by several factors. In places where the recharge to the ground-water reservoir is exceptionally large, the water table may rise to form a mound from which the water slowly spreads. Depressions or troughs in the water table indicate places where the ground water is discharging, u along streams that are below the normal level it the water table, or indicate places where water is being withdrawn by wells or vegetation.
The several factors that influence the water table vary in fact and amount from time to time because of changes in weather and the water requirements or vegetation and man; thus, the water table is nearly always rising or falling.
The fluctuations or the water table are shown by the changes in water levels in wells. Thus, the rate and amount of the fluctuation of the water table can be ascertained by observing the water levels in wells, and the magnitude or the several factors effecting the position of the water table can be interpreted by analyzing the water-level data.
Water-level measurements are given, in this report, in feet below the land surface at the well site. Water levels that are above land surface are preceded by a plus (+) sign in the tables, whereas those below land surface have no sign but are understood to be minus (-). The words "land-surface datum" are abbreviated "lsd'' in some places in tables of this report.
The altitude above mean sea level (msl) of the land surface at many of the well sites has been determined and is included in the tables or this report.
Twenty-eight observation wells in Nebraska are equipped with recording gages. Each recording gage produces a continuous graph of water-level fluctuations in the well. Only the lowest water level on the last day of record in each month, as recorded by the gage, is given in this report; the complete record is on file in the office of the U.S. Geological Survey in Lincoln, Nebr.
Additional publication details
- Publication type:
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- USGS Numbered Series
- Water levels in observation wells in Nebraska during 1956
- Series title:
- Open-File Report
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- Year Published:
- U.S. Geological Survey
- ix, 123 p.
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- United States