Water Resources III - Field Problems Reports


View of Hermit's Peak from the Pritzlaff Ranch headquarters


WR 573 Summer 2011 Field Course

Water Resources Assessment of the Rito Peñas Negras

Abstract:During the summer of 2011 students and faculty from the UNM Water Resources Program conducted an investigation of the Rito Peñas Negras in the Cuba District of the Santa Fe National Forest. The objective was to conduct an assessment of the stream and determine its characteristics, quality, and ability to meet its designated use of supporting high quality coldwater aquatic life. The Rito Peñas Negras is a small first order stream with a total length of 7.9 miles. It has one tributary, the Rito Café, which adds another 4 miles to its length. The watershed consists of 10,850 acres and ranges in elevation from approximately 8,500 ft to 9,000 ft. The lower reaches of the stream are the subject of a watershed restoration project by the WildEarth Guardians that consists of constructing animal exclosures and re-establishing riparian vegetation. The results of this study may serve as a baseline for future evaluation of the success of this restoration effort.



WR 573 Summer 2010 Field Course

Water Resources Assessment of the Cimarron River and Evaluation of Water Quality Characteristics at the Maxwell National Wildlife Refuge - June 2010

Abstract: During the second week of June 2010, the UNM Masters of Water Resources students, staff, and collaborators studied the Cimarron River watershed from its head waters above Eagle Nest Lake to its confluence with the Canadian River near Taylor Springs, NM, and the Maxwell National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) near Maxwell, NM. The investigation included measuring flows and water quality characteristics at 34 surface water sites in the two study areas. The main objectives of the study were to conduct a river assessment of the Cimarron River and evaluate water quality characteristics and playa lake sediment chemistry at the Maxwell NWR. It is expected that this report will serve as a basis for future research on the hydrology, water quality, and to a lesser extent, the socioeconomic characteristics of the river and its watershed and the Maxwell NWR. The report is divided into two sections, the first second describes the work done on the Cimarron River watershed and the second section describes work done at the Maxwell NWR. FULL TEXT



WR 573 Summer 2009 Field Course

Water Resources Assessment of the Mora River - June 2009

Abstract: During the second week of June 2009, the UNM Masters of Water Resources students, staff, and collaborators studied the Mora River watershed by measuring flows and water quality characteristics at over 20 surface water sites in the watershed. The main objective of the study was to conduct a river assessment of the Mora River and its corresponding acequia systems. It is expected that this report will serve as a baseline for future research on the hydrology, water quality, and to a lesser extent, the socioeconomic characteristics of the river and its watershed. FULL TEXT



WR 573 Summer 2008 Field Course

Water Resources Assessment of the Sapello River - June 2008

Abstract: The Sappello river drains a watershed of approximately 294 miles located principally in San Miguel county of northern New Mexico. The river flows east out of the Sangre de Christo mountains, and joins the Mora River, a tributary to the Canadian River, near Watrous, NM. The watershed was the subject of an intensive three week field study by students at the University of New Mexico who were enrolled in the WR 573, Field Methods class. The study involved collecting information on the hydrology, water quality, and economic conditions in the watershed. Emphasis was placed on determination of the aquatic health of the river including assessment of the stream’s hydrology, geomorphology, riparian vegetation, benthic macroinvertebrate population, and water chemistry. FULL TEXT



WR 573 Summer 2007 Field Course

Water Resources Assessment in the Greater Rio Casas Grandes Watershed

Abstract: The Rio Casas Grandes watershed is located in northern Chihuahua, Mexico, just east of the Sierra Madres. Like all arid desert regions, this watershed faces problems related to a lack of fresh water. Increasing populations, agriculture, and industry create a challenge to water managers and users in the watershed. Water shortages from drought combined with increased use have caused decreases in water tables as well as increases in the number of fallow fields in the lower reaches of the watershed. Poor land management practices combined with water shortages have the potential to threaten the livelihood of communities within this watershed. FULL TEXT