Event Title

Session B2 - Identifying Opportunities for Barrier Removal and Fish Passage Improvements within the Hudson-Raritan Estuary

Location

UMass Amherst

Event Website

http://fishpassage.ecs.umass.edu/Conference2012/

Start Date

5-6-2012 2:10 PM

End Date

5-6-2012 2:30 PM

Description

The Hudson-Raritan Estuary (HRE) is one of the most urbanized estuaries in the world, and centuries of urban and industrial land uses have resulted in severely degraded ecological conditions. The Estuary spans the boundaries of many municipalities within New York and New Jersey (including New York City). Planning for restoration within such an ecologically and politically diverse system poses many challenges.

The New York District with its partner the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in a collaborative effort with over 60 organizations in partnership with NY/NJ Harbor Estuary Program released the Draft Comprehensive Restoration Plan. The Plan established 11 goals for the HRE to create and restore a mosaic of habitats within a human dominated landscape. One of the goals, Tributary Connections, aims to reconnect freshwater streams to the estuary and provide a range of quality habitats to aquatic organisms. Historically, anadromous spawning runs of alewife, blueback herring, striped bass and American shad and catadromous runs of American eel were common in the HRE. Poor stream conditions and an increased number of obstacles to upstream migration, like tide gates, culverts and dams have reduced these species’ migration opportunities. An integral component of the Tributary Connection initiative will be the identification and prioritization of potential locations to restore diadromous fish passage.

Currently the HRE Region has no prioritization or assessment strategy procedures for identifying potential locations. To advance this strategy, the study team is developing a process to inventory and screen barriers and their associated ecological settings. Information collected through this process will be used to determine viability of sites for barrier removal or bypass and successful re-establishment of fish passage in the HRE. The objective of this project is to develop a systematic method for identifying and assessing fish passage barriers within the HRE. The first step of this process will be accomplished by creating as detailed and complete a database of blockages as possible through desktop analysis. As a next step, barriers and tributary reaches will be reviewed to create a thorough database of habitat, biological, structural and landscape attributes. Field assessments will be conducted to identify undocumented obstacles and supplement desktop analysis. Ultimately, these metrics will be used to rank, compare and prioritize individual barriers for restoration potential.

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Jun 5th, 2:10 PM Jun 5th, 2:30 PM

Session B2 - Identifying Opportunities for Barrier Removal and Fish Passage Improvements within the Hudson-Raritan Estuary

UMass Amherst

The Hudson-Raritan Estuary (HRE) is one of the most urbanized estuaries in the world, and centuries of urban and industrial land uses have resulted in severely degraded ecological conditions. The Estuary spans the boundaries of many municipalities within New York and New Jersey (including New York City). Planning for restoration within such an ecologically and politically diverse system poses many challenges.

The New York District with its partner the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in a collaborative effort with over 60 organizations in partnership with NY/NJ Harbor Estuary Program released the Draft Comprehensive Restoration Plan. The Plan established 11 goals for the HRE to create and restore a mosaic of habitats within a human dominated landscape. One of the goals, Tributary Connections, aims to reconnect freshwater streams to the estuary and provide a range of quality habitats to aquatic organisms. Historically, anadromous spawning runs of alewife, blueback herring, striped bass and American shad and catadromous runs of American eel were common in the HRE. Poor stream conditions and an increased number of obstacles to upstream migration, like tide gates, culverts and dams have reduced these species’ migration opportunities. An integral component of the Tributary Connection initiative will be the identification and prioritization of potential locations to restore diadromous fish passage.

Currently the HRE Region has no prioritization or assessment strategy procedures for identifying potential locations. To advance this strategy, the study team is developing a process to inventory and screen barriers and their associated ecological settings. Information collected through this process will be used to determine viability of sites for barrier removal or bypass and successful re-establishment of fish passage in the HRE. The objective of this project is to develop a systematic method for identifying and assessing fish passage barriers within the HRE. The first step of this process will be accomplished by creating as detailed and complete a database of blockages as possible through desktop analysis. As a next step, barriers and tributary reaches will be reviewed to create a thorough database of habitat, biological, structural and landscape attributes. Field assessments will be conducted to identify undocumented obstacles and supplement desktop analysis. Ultimately, these metrics will be used to rank, compare and prioritize individual barriers for restoration potential.

http://scholarworks.umass.edu/fishpassage_conference/2012/June5/29