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The Effects of Roads on the Post-Harvest Condition of Streams, Riparian Areas, and Fish Habitats in British Columbia 1996 – 2010 The Effects of Roads on.

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Presentation on theme: "The Effects of Roads on the Post-Harvest Condition of Streams, Riparian Areas, and Fish Habitats in British Columbia 1996 – 2010 The Effects of Roads on."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Effects of Roads on the Post-Harvest Condition of Streams, Riparian Areas, and Fish Habitats in British Columbia 1996 – 2010 The Effects of Roads on the Post-Harvest Condition of Streams, Riparian Areas, and Fish Habitats in British Columbia 1996 – 2010 Peter J. Tschaplinski Ministry of Environment

2 Riparian Management Evaluation Question Are riparian forestry and range practices effective in maintaining the structural integrity and functions of stream ecosystems and other aquatic resource features over both short and long terms?

3 Indicator and Protocol Development FREP Fish-Riparian Technical Team: Peter Tschaplinski, B.C. Ministry Forests, Mines and Lands Dan Hogan, B.C. Ministry Forests, Mines and Lands Derek Tripp, Consulting Biologist; Steve Bird, Consulting Geomorphologist; Richard Thompson, B.C. Ministry of Environment Andrew Witt, B.C. Ministry of Environment; Steve Chatwin and Kevin Edquist, Forest Practices Board of British Columbia; Erland MacIsaac, Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada; John Richardson, the University of British Columbia Wendy Bergerud, B.C. Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands (sampling design)

4 Expert Peer Review of Indicators, Field Protocols and Report Dr. Robert Bilby, Weyerhaeuser Company Dr. Sherri Johnson, U.S.D.A. Forest Service Steve Smith, Leader, National Riparian Service Team, U.S.D.I. Bureau of Land Management Janice Staats, Hydrologist, National Riparian Service Team, U.S.D.I. Bureau of Land Management Dr. John Rex, B.C. Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands Dr. Katherine Sullivan, Humboldt Redwood Company Dr. Gordon Hartman, Consulting Fisheries Biologist and Fisheries & Oceans Canada (retired) Dr. Todd Redding, FORREX/Okanagan University College

5 Stream-Riparian Indicators 1. Channel bed disturbance 2. Channel bank disturbance 3. LWD characteristics 4. Channel morphology 5. Aquatic connectivity 6. Fish cover diversity 7. Moss abundance & condition 8. Fine sediments 9. Aquatic invertebrate diversity 10. Windthrow frequency 11. Riparian soil disturbance/ bare ground 12. LWD supply/root network 13. Shade & microclimate 14. Disturbance-increasers/ noxious weeds/invasive plants 15. Vegetation form, vigour, & structure

6 Evaluation Approach Assess physical and biological conditions in streams and their riparian areas with RSM checklist covering 15 indicator-questions Site assessments vary, based on stream morphology and fish use 114–120 measurements, estimates, and observations are required to complete a stream-riparian assessment based on 38–60 specific indicators Each main question answered “Yes = OK” or “No = problem” Roll-up score = overall site condition

7 Roll-up Scoring System Number of “No” Indicators out of 15: 1. Properly Functioning Condition No’s 2. Properly Functioning, with Limited Impacts (= old “at Risk”) No’s 3. Properly Functioning, with Impacts (intermediate = old “at High Risk”) No’s 4. Not Properly Functioning > 6 No’s

8 Provincial Riparian-Stream Sample Harvest Years S1S2S3S4S5S6Total FP Code ( ) Transition ( ) FRPA ( ) ALL

9 Provincial RSM Summary of Post-harvest Stream-Riparian Condition Assessments, 2005 – %

10 Overall Stream/Riparian Condition by Stream Class, 2005 – 2011

11 Riparian Class Pre-Code Percentage equivalent to FREP NPF Early FPC Era (FP Board audit) Percentage equivalent to FREP NPF FREP 2005–2011 Percentage NPF S1500 S S S S S Comparison of Post-Harvest Outcomes for BC Streams Pre-Code vs. Post 1995

12 Riparian Class FREP Monitoring by HARVEST ERA FP Code Era 1997–2003 n = 841 Percentage NPF Transition Era 2004–2006 n = 607 Percentage NPF FRPA Era 2007–2010 n = 216 Percentage NPF S1 000 S S S S S Trends in Post-Harvest Outcomes for BC Streams: FP Code, Transition, and FRPA Eras

13 Overall Results by Main Indicator-Question Overall Results by Main Indicator-Question

14 Major Impact Factor Coast Area Northern Interior Area Southern Interior Area ALL Roads ( sediment generation and transport) Low RMA Tree Retention Windthrow Falling and Yarding (includes logging in-stream slash) Fire, Beetle Infestation (non-forestry related) Machine disturbance: Harvesting Livestock Trampling < Overall Sources of Impact for Affected Streams Overall Sources of Impact for Affected Streams

15 Frequency of Observed Impacts from Road-Related Sources

16 Frequency of Observed Impacts on Sediment/Debris from Non-Road Sources

17 Stream Class Percentage of Streams Buffered Buffer Width (m) = Mean Distance from Streambank to Beginning of Tree Harvest (Harvest Edge) Mean  Standard Error Sample (n) S S S S S S ALL ,059 Province-wide Riparian Retention Levels by Stream Class

18 Functioning Condition Percent of Streams Fish Bearing with Riparian Reserves (Class S1, S2, S3) Classes S4, S5, & S6 with Overstory and Understory Retention Classes S4, S5, & S6 with Mainly Understory Retention PFC PFC-L PFC-I NPF5520 Functional Outcomes for Streams with Full Retention vs. Understory/Small Vegetation Within First 10 m of the RMA

19 1.Amount of road ‑ related sediment found at stream crossings (all stream classes) Management of fine sediments remains a concern in spite of improvements 83 % of non-fish-bearing class S6 headwater streams were affected by fine sediments in the FP Code harvest years (1997 – 2003) This has decreased to 60 % of class S6s during the FRPA years 2.Levels of riparian tree retention for many small streams (classes S4, S5, S6) Functional outcomes or “health” of small streams with buffers 10 m wide are equivalent to larger fish-bearing streams with riparian reserves m wide Nearly 20 % of class S4s and 45% of S6s are without treed buffers Key Factors Affecting Management Outcomes for Stream-Riparian Systems

20 ADM Recommendations for Improved Practices Outcomes 1.Establish full wind-firm buffers 10 m wide on all class S4 fish-bearing streams and PERENNIAL non-fish-bearing class S5s and S6s that deliver water, alluvial sediments, nutrients, organic materials, and invertebrates to fish-bearing habitats and (or) drinking water sources Can be achieved without increasing overall retention levels in a landscape by re- distributing current levels of riparian retention for small streams to priority reaches 2.Retain, at minimum, all non-merchantable trees, understory trees, smaller vegetation and as many wind-firm trees as possible within the first 10 m of the RMA for all other S5s and S6s (e.g., INTERMITTENT and EPHEMERAL streams with low transport capability) directly connected to fish-bearing areas and (or) drinking water sources 3.Limit fine sediments input from road crossings and riparian practices Follow well-established best management practices concerning fine sediment delivery to streams and stream crossings. Forest Road Engineering Guidebook; Erosion and Sediment Control Practices for Forest Roads and Stream Crossings; and the Fish-stream Crossing Guidebook, Revised Edition, September 2012


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