Extensive modification and excavation of stream channels in the 6-square mile Chicod Creek basin began in mid-1979 to reduce flooding and improve stream runoff conditions. The effects of channel improvements on this Coastal Pain basin 's hydrology will be determined from data collected prior to, during, and for several years following channel alternations. This report summarizes the findings of data collected prior to these improvements. During the 3-year study period, flow data collected from four stream gaging stations in the basin show that streams are dry approximately 10 percent of the time. Chemical analyses of water samples from the streams and from eight shallow groundwater observation wells indicate that water discharge from the surficial aquifer is the primary source of streamflow during rainless periods. Concentrations of Kjeldahl nitrogen, total nitrogen, and total phosphorus were often 5 to 10 times greater at Chicod Creek sites than those at nearby baseline sites. It is probable that runoff from farming and livestock operations contributes significantly to these elevated concentrations in Chicod Creek. The only pesticides detected in stream water were low levels of DDT and dieldrin, which occurred during storm runoff. A much wider range of pesticides, however, are found associated with streambed materials. The ratio of fecal coliform counts to those of fecal streptococcus indicate that the streams receive fecal wastes from livestock and poultry operations.
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USGS Numbered Series
Hydrology of the Chicod Creek basin, North Carolina, prior to channel improvements