Technical Guide for Field Practitioners: Understanding and Monitoring Aquatic Organism Passage at Road-Stream Crossings
Stream connectivity has become increasingly important for river restoration and fish-habitat improvement projects (Fullerton et al. 2010) amidst increasing evidence that it plays a vital role in supporting aquatic organism populations (Roni et al. 2002; Gibson et al. 2005) and species diversity (Nislow et al. 2011). Recent emphasis on identifying and removing barriers in order to restore aquatic organism passage (AOP) is based on well-documented negative effects of road-stream crossings on fish (Rieman et al. 1997; Hudy et al. 2005) and the potential for cost-effective restoration of aquatic habitat. However, challenges remain in identifying barriers and prioritizing road-stream crossings for remediation. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (USFS) has been working to stream-line the process of identifying and remediating road-stream crossings that are inadequate for AOP.