Research & Data > Monitoring & Assessment > Water quality improvement effectiveness monitoring > Henderson Inlet

Henderson Inlet effectiveness monitoring

Our monitoring work in the Henderson Inlet watershed highlights how local government projects successfully reduced fecal coliform levels in water. 

A preview of the story map with an aerial view of Henderson Inlet and tabs for project and monitoring results.

Monitoring results

Explore study results from the Henderson Inlet watershed in our latest story map.
 

Henderson Inlet, located at the south end of Puget Sound, hosts productive shellfish beds and recreation. However, historically poor water quality led to beach and shellfish-harvest closures.

Thurston County, the cities of Lacey and Olympia, and Thurston Conservation District carried out a range of projects to tackle this water quality problem. These projects aimed to reduce potential sources of fecal contamination like residential wastewater, stormwater, pet waste, and agricultural runoff.

Meanwhile, we monitored water quality in streams throughout the Henderson Inlet watershed to study the effectiveness of these projects. We found that fecal coliform levels in Woodland and Woodard Creeks declined over the timeframe of these projects, despite increases in local population and development.
 
An aerial view of Henderson Inlet and surrounding land and woods. The overlaid text reads,

Project overview

Get a broad overview of our work and our partners' work in Henderson Inlet watershed in this story map.