A Giardia Source Investigation in a National Forest Municipal Supply Watershed

by Arne E. Rosquist, Jr., Lolo Natl Forest, Missoula, MT, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Watershed Management in the Eighties


For nearly 100 years, the City of Missoula, Montana, obtained most of its municipal water from a surface water supply, Rattlesnake Creek. The Rattlesnake watershed lies within the Lolo National Forest. Except for the area immediately above the city's water intake, the watershed is virtually undeveloped; in 1980, its headwaters were designated a wilderness and its lower reaches a national recreation area. The city diverted water from the stream 2 mi north of the city. It was piped to a holding reservoir where it was augmented with well water and disinfected before being distributed to customers. In May and June 1983, 22 cases of Giardiasis were reported to the Missoula County Health Department. This was three times higher than the number of cases reported during these months in 1982.

Subject Headings: Urban areas | Forests | Municipal water | Watersheds | Surface water | Rivers and streams | Water-based recreation | Water intakes | Montana | United States

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