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The Sabine River Authority 1998 Summary Report of water quality in the Sabine River Basin reported some water quality concerns identified by the Sabine River Authority (SRA) systematic subwatershed-screening program. Concerns for ammonia, and non-support of stream standards for dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids, and chloride were identified. The design of this study was tailored to examine these specific concerns identified by historic sampling. The Hawkins Creek subwatershed is mostly rural, but has significant numbers of suburban housing developments and widespread oil and gas leases. Hawkins Creek has been subject to periodic oil and saltwater spills. Concerns for chlorides and total dissolved solids may indicate impact from oilfield runoff and periodic spills, while low dissolved oxygen and elevated levels of ammonia would be more likely associated with population developments or products of natural decay of organic material. For this study, one set of samples was taken during normal flow conditions to help establish ambient conditions. A rainfall event sample was planned, but delayed due to logistics of long-term deployment of auto-samplers and the volume of water required for the different analyses desired. Manual sample collection was planned as an alternative to auto-samplers. Reduced funding forced a termination of this study before the rainfall event sampling could be completed.

Sampling for benthic macroinvertebrates and fish was completed. Sampling collections were made twice, once during early summer and again during the late summer index period. Routine field and laboratory parameters, total and dissolved metals in water, and biomonitoring and rapid bio-assessment (RBA) were collected at all sites. 

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Prepared in Cooperation with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Under the Authorization of the Texas Clean Rivers Act.

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