Matoon Creek Watershed (New York)

Watershed Characteristics

The Matoon Creek Watershed is located near Canton, New York in St. Lawrence County. It stretches from Hailesboro in the north down near Antwerp in the south. The watershed includes parts of Hawkins and Shingle Creek.

Matoon Creek

The watershed is covered primarily in deciduous forest, accounting for 48 percent of the land use. 20 percent of the land is dedicated to pasture/hay. Large remaining portions of the land are covered in evergreen forest and wetlands.

Minimal wooded riparian zones were noted at several sites along the main channel and tributaries, but the stream channels were not identified as a source of sediment supply.

Modeling Approach

The Matoon Creek Sediment Transport Analysis and Regional Training (START) Assessment was used to demonstrate the use of web-based tools for determining potential areas of erosion and sediment supply and transport within the watershed.

The START Assessment used the High Impact Targeting (HIT) tool, the Long-Term Hydrologic Impact Assessment Low Impact Development (L-THIA LID) tool, and the web-based Water Erosion Prediction Project (WEPP) model. Each tool was used independently of the others and provided results used to assist in prioritizing areas of erosion potential.

Field observations overlaid on WEPP results.

HIT is a decision support tool for multi-scale prioritization of agricultural areas that combines an erosion model and a sediment delivery model to calculate annual erosion and sediment loading in watersheds.

L-THIA LID is a decision support tool that evaluates the benefits of low-impact development practices by producing existing runoff depth and volume along with nonpoint source pollution loading.

The WEPP Watershed Online GIS Interface is a small-watershed scale model developed to quantify the impact of land management practices in watersheds and identifying problematic areas.

Additionally, field reconnaissance was used to better understand watershed characteristics and allowed researchers to cover areas not included in the online tools. Results from the online tools and field reconnaissance were overlaid on a watershed map.

Use and Application

The purpose of this START Assessment was to demonstrate the use of the available online tools and provide a basis for further studies of watersheds. The assessment was prepared for the St. Lawrence County Soil and Water Conservation District in Canton, New York.

Matoon Creek Field Reconnaissance Site locations and highway system

Areas of concern regarding potential of erosion and sediment supply locations were identified from the results of the assessment. The online tools and procedures described in this assessment can be used to define areas of potential erosion and to compare results of certain BMPs within the watershed.

The tools used in this assessment are available to local stakeholders to evaluate management options for the watershed with the overall goal of reducing the loading of sediments and pollutants to tributaries in order to enhance Great Lakes water quality, delist Areas of Concern, and reduce the need for navigation dredging.


Click here to view the full assessment. 

Project Partners

Contact Information

Mike Voorhees
USACE, Buffalo District
1776 Niagara Street
Buffalo, NY 14207
Phone: (716) 879-4488