Watersheds in the Region
The divide between the Flambeau River watershed and the Wisconsin River watershed runs through the town of Star Lake. Ballard Lake is in the Flambeau watershed and Little Star (and thus Star) is in the Wisconsin River watershed.
The "[Sub]continental Divide is located on Highway B, west of Land O'Lakes towards Presque Isle. Lakes and streams to the north of the highway run through the Great Lake to the St. Lawrence River, those to the south run into the Mississippi Watershed. This spot is marked near Devil's Lake. "Where to Go and What to See in Vilas County" 1982
Note: A continental divide separates watersheds that flow to different oceans. There are three oceans surrounding North America: the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic, thus there are three continental divides in North America--between the Atlantic and the Pacific, between the Pacific and the Arctic, and between the Arctic and the Atlantic. Because of the high ridge of the Rockies, we tend to think of the divide that runs down that spine as a single divide, and pay little attention to the divide that runs from Triple Divide Peak in Glacier Park in Montana to the Canadian East Coast.
A subcontinental divide separates watersheds that flow to the same ocean but to different gulfs or seas. The subcontinental divide that goes through Star Lake separates the waters flowing to the Gulf of Mexico via the Missiissippi River (through the Wisconsin River) from the waters flowing to the Gulf of St. Lawrence through the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River. Both gulfs are part of the Atlantic Ocean.
**** indicates no known author.
POSSIBLE WATERSHED CONNECTION
From "Musky Genetics" (A report on musky genetic research, "College of Natural Resources, UW Stevens Point): Our tests show a definite split in the genetic makeup of musky populations from the northeastern areas of the state (including the Upper Wisconsin and Upper Chippewa River drainage areas) and the northwestern portions. These distributions and differences do not correspond to contemporary fish management units suggesting these differences are more the result of long-term, natural variations.
"One of two explanations or a combination of the two likely describe the current patterns we're seeing. First, the Upper Chippewa River musky populations and the eastern Lake Superior populations may have historically been connected to the upper Wisconsin. This would explain the genetic heritage we are documenting in these fish. Secondly, the influence of stocking cannot be eliminated."
The 2008-09 Annual Report of the UW Stevens Point, College of Natural Resources, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit noted: "Two contemporary management units, the upper Chippewa River and the Lake Superior, failed to resolve suggesting historical genetic boundaries and contemporary watershed boundaries are not congruent for these two units. Further delineation and resolution of stock boundaries within the state will provide for more accurate and efficient management of Wisconsin's muskellunge resource."