River Quality Data

Thanks to a cooperative project between DMWW, Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Agriculture’s Clean Water Alliance (ACWA), you can get up-to-the-minute nitrate readings for the Raccoon and Des Moines Rivers.

Current River Data

Raccoon River
A remote monitoring device has been installed near the Van Meter Bridge, just downstream from the confluence of the north, middle and south branches of the Raccoon. This location has scientific importance because nitrate readings can be evaluated along with USGS flow data, for which there is nearly a 100-year record.

You can obtain the nitrate reading by going to the USGS website, check the nitrate box, then hit go.

Des Moines River
A remote monitoring device has been installed on the Des Moines River near the 2nd Avenue Bridge, downstream from Saylorville Reservoir. This location has scientific importance because it helps us to understand the movement of water and to evaluate the chemical factors affecting water quality. The location is unique in that it is below a large impoundment of water (Saylorville Reservoir). The site provides the opportunity to study the effects a large reservoir can have on the downstream transport of chemicals. You can obtain the flow and real time Nitrate monitoring data by going to the USGS website, check the nitrate box, then hit go.

At times, the USGS website (where the data below is sourced from) does not provide the data.  If you see a message that the USGS website refused to connect, please try again later.


Raccoon River Nitrate Concentration (mg/l), 30 days



Des Moines River Nitrate Concentration (mg/l), 30 days


Raccoon River Discharge, cubic feet/second, 30 days


Des Moines River Discharge, cubic feet/second, 30 days



Raccoon River Gage Height, feet, 30 days


Des Moines River Gage Height, feet, 30 days


Raccoon River Water Temperature, 30 days

Des Moines River Water Temperature, 30 days



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