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File text/texmacs A Function-Based Framework for Stream Assessment & Restoration Projects
Stream restoration efforts have increased significantly in the US over the past few decades and are now recognized as a billion-dollar industry. These restoration efforts stem from centuries of abuse as humans continue to alter the riverine landscape for a variety of purposes, including farming, logging, mining and development on the floodplain, and the subsequent need for channelization and flood control. These activities have significantly diminished the natural functions of our stream corridors. Today stream corridor restoration efforts seek to improve or restore these lost functions. A variety of federal, state and local programs, along with efforts from non-profit organizations, provide funding for these programs. The goals are varied and range from simple streambank stabilization projects to watershed scale restoration. For these projects to be successful it is important to know why the project is being completed and what techniques are best suited to restore the lost functions. Knowing why a project is needed requires some form of functional assessment followed by clear project goals. To successfully restore stream functions, it is necessary to understand how these different functions work together and which restoration techniques influence a given function. It is also imperative to understand that stream functions are interrelated and build on each other in a specific order, a functional hierarchy. If this hierarchy is understood, it is easier to establish project goals. And with clearer goals, it is easier to evaluate project success.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications / Stream Assessment and Monitoring
File A regional neural network ensemble for predicting mean daily river water temperature
Water temperature is a fundamental property of river habitat and often a key aspect of river resource management, but measurements to characterize thermal regimes are not available for most streams and rivers. As such, we developed an artificial neural network (ANN) ensemble model to predict mean daily water temperature in 197,402 individual stream reaches during the warm season (May–October) throughout the native range of brook trout Salvelinus fontinalis in the eastern U.S. We compared four models with different groups of predictors to determine how well water temperature could be predicted by climatic, landform, and land cover attributes, and used the median prediction from an ensemble of 100 ANNs as our final prediction for each model. The final model included air temperature, landform attributes and forested land cover and predicted mean daily water temperatures with moderate accuracy as determined by root mean squared error (RMSE) at 886 training sites with data from 1980 to 2009 (RMSE = 1.91 C). Based on validation at 96 sites (RMSE = 1.82) and separately for data from 2010 (RMSE = 1.93), a year with relatively warmer conditions, the model was able to generalize to new stream reaches and years. The most important predictors were mean daily air temperature, prior 7 day mean air temperature, and network catchment area according to sensitivity analyses. Forest land cover at both riparian and catchment extents had relatively weak but clear negative effects. Predicted daily water temperature averaged for the month of July matched expected spatial trends with cooler temperatures in headwaters and at higher elevations and latitudes. Our ANN ensemble is unique in predicting daily temperatures throughout a large region, while other regional efforts have predicted at relatively coarse time steps. The model may prove a useful tool for predicting water temperatures in sampled and unsampled rivers under current conditions and future projections of climate and land use changes, thereby providing information that is valuable to management of river ecosystems and biota such as brook trout.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications
File Acid Mine Drainage and Effects on Fish Health and Ecology: A Review
Acid rock drainage (ARD) is produced by the oxidation of sulfide minerals, chiefly iron pyrite or iron disulfide (FeS2). This is a natural chemical reaction which can proceed when minerals are exposed to air and water. Acidic drainage is found around the world both as a result of naturally occurring processes and activities associated with land disturbances, such as highway construction and mining where acid-forming minerals are exposed at the surface of the earth. These acidic conditions can cause metals in geologic materials to dissolve, which can lead to impairment of water quality when acidic and used by terrestrial or aquatic organisms. metal laden discharges enter waters.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications
File Broad-Scale Patterns of Brook Trout Responses to Introduced Brown Trout in New York
Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis and Brown Trout Salmo trutta are valuable sport fish that coexist in many parts of the world due to stocking introductions. Causes for the decline of Brook Trout within their native range are not clear but include competition with Brown Trout, habitat alteration, and repetitive stocking practices. New York State contains a large portion of the Brook Trout’s native range, where both species are maintained by stocking and other management actions.We used artificial neural network models, regression, principal components analysis, and simulation to evaluate the effects of Brown Trout, environmental conditions, and stocking on the distribution of Brook Trout in the center of their native range. We found evidence for the decline of Brook Trout in the presence of Brown Trout across many watersheds; 22% of sampled reaches where both species were expected to occur contained only Brown Trout. However, a model of the direct relationship between Brook Trout and Brown Trout abundance explained less than 1% of data variation. Ordination showed extensive overlap of Brook Trout and Brown Trout habitat conditions, with only small components of the hypervolume (multidimensional space) being distinctive. Subsequent analysis indicated higher abundances of Brook Trout in highly forested areas, while Brown Trout were more abundant in areas with relatively high proportions of agriculture. Simulation results indicated that direct interactions and habitat conditions were relatively minor factors compared with the effects of repeated stocking of Brown Trout into Brook Trout habitat. Intensive annual stocking of Brown Trout could eliminate resident Brook Trout in less than a decade. Ecological differences, harvest behavior, and other habitat changes can exacerbate Brook Trout losses. Custom stocking scenarios with Brown Trout introductions at relatively low proportions of resident Brook Trout populations may be able to sustain healthy populations of both species within their present range.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications
File Brook Trout Movement in Response to Temperature, Flow, and Thermal Refugia within a Complex Appalachian Riverscape
We quantified movements of brook trout Salvelinus fontinalis and brown trout Salmo trutta in a complex riverscape characterized by a large, open-canopy main stem and a small, closed-canopy tributary in easternWest Virginia, USA. Our objectives were to quantify the overall rate of trout movement and relate movement behaviors to variation in streamflow, water temperature, and access to coldwater refugia. The study area experienced extremely high seasonal, yearly, and among-stream variability in water temperature and flow. The relative mobility of brook trout within the upper Shavers Fork watershed varied significantly depending on whether individuals resided within the larger main stem or the smaller tributary. The movement rate of trout inhabiting the main stem during summer months (50 m/d) was an order of magnitude higher than that of tributary fish (2 m/d). Movement rates of main-stem-resident brook trout during summer were correlated with the maximum water temperature experienced by the fish and with the fish’s initial distance from a known coldwater source. For main-stem trout, use of microhabitats closer to cover was higher during extremely warm periods than during cooler periods; use of microhabitats closer to cover during warm periods was also greater for main-stem trout than for tributary inhabitants. Main-stem-resident trout were never observed in water exceeding 19.5◦C. Our study provides some of the first data on brook trout movements in a large Appalachian river system and underscores the importance of managing trout fisheries in a riverscape context. Brook trout conservation in this region will depend on restoration and protection of coldwater refugia in larger river main stems as well as removal of barriers to trout movement near tributary and main-stem confluences.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications
File C++ source code Climate Change 2007 Synthesis Report - IPCC
This report summarizes the findings of three Working Group reports and provides a synthesis that specifically addresses the issues of concern to policy makers in the domain of climate change.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications / Chesapeake Bay Brook Trout Management Strategy-References
File Distribution and Status of Brook Trout in eastern U.S. - Hudy et al. 2008
This publication describes the distribution and status of Brook Trout across its historic eastern U. S. range.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications / Chesapeake Bay Brook Trout Management Strategy-References
File Dynamically Downscaled Climate Simulations over North America - Hostetler et al. 2011
This publication describes an array of high resolution simulations of present and future climate over North America.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications / Chesapeake Bay Brook Trout Management Strategy-References
File Dynamics and regulation of the southern brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) population in an Appalachian stream
1. We used information theoretic statistics [Akaike’s Information Criterion (AIC)] and regression analysis in a multiple hypothesis testing approach to assess the processes capable of explaining long-term demographic variation in a lightly exploited brook trout population in Ball Creek, NC. We sampled a 100-m-long second-order site during both spring and autumn 1991–2004, using three-pass electrofishing. 2. Principle component analysis indicated that the site had lower average velocity, greater amounts of depositional substrata and lower amount of erosional substrata during the 1999–2002 drought than in non-drought years. In addition, drought years had lower flows, and lower variation in flows, than non-drought years. 3. Both young-of-the-year (YOY) and adult densities varied by an order of magnitude during the study. AIC analysis conducted on regressions of per capita rate of increase versus various population and habitat parameters for the population, adults and YOY, for both spring and autumn data sets, indicated that simple density dependence almost always was the only interpretable model with Akaike weights (wi) ranging from 0.262 to 0.836. 4. Growth analyses yielded more variable results, with simple density dependence being the only interpretable model for both adult spring data (wi = 0.999) and YOY autumn data (wi = 0.905), and positive density dependence (wi = 0.636) and simple density independence (wi = 0.241) representing interpretable models for spring YOY data. 5. We detected a significant stock–recruitment relationship between both spring and autumn densities of adults in year t and autumn YOY density in year t + 1. Finally, spring YOY density was positively correlated with both autumn YOY density and spring mean YOY standard length (SL), suggesting that processes affecting recruitment show residual effects at least in the first year of life. This population appears to be regulated primarily by density dependent processes, although high flows also negatively affected mean SLs of YOY.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications
File Efficacy of Environmental DNA to Detect and Quantify Brook Trout Populations in Headwater Streams of the Adirondack Mountains, New York
Environmental DNA (eDNA) analysis is rapidly evolving as a tool for monitoring the distributions of aquatic species. Detection of species’ populations in streams may be challenging because the persistence time for intact DNA fragments is unknown and because eDNA is diluted and dispersed by dynamic hydrological processes. During 2015, the DNA of Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis was analyzed from water samples collected at 40 streams across the Adirondack region of upstate New York, where Brook Trout populations were recently quantified. Study objectives were to evaluate different sampling methods and the ability of eDNA to accurately predict the presence and abundance of resident Brook Trout populations. Results from three-pass electrofishing surveys indicated that Brook Trout were absent from 10 sites and were present in low (<100 fish/0.1 ha), moderate (100–300 fish/0.1 ha), and high (>300 fish/0.1 ha) densities at 9, 11, and 10 sites, respectively. The eDNA results correctly predicted the presence and confirmed the absence of Brook Trout at 85.0–92.5% of the study sites; eDNA also explained 44% of the variability in Brook Trout population density and 24% of the variability in biomass. These findings indicate that eDNA surveys will enable researchers to effectively characterize the presence and abundance of Brook Trout and other species’ populations in headwater streams across the Adirondack region and elsewhere.
Located in Resources / Brook Trout Related Publications