Fecal Coliform Bacteria
The tributaries to the river often contain dangerous levels of fecal coliform from failing septic tanks, wastewater treatment plants, broken sewer lines, and animal waste. In Duval County alone, over 50 streams are listed as “impaired” due to elevated levels of fecal coliform bacteria. A bacteria count of 200 per 10 ml of sample signifies a water body is safe for primary contact, i.e., swimming. Many streams in Duval County have bacteria counts in the tens of thousands.