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Riparian willow communities along the Illinois River at Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge in North Park near Walden, Colorado, provide important habitat for a number of wildlife species, including neotropical migratory birds. Existing stands in the northern (downstream) portion of the refuge are sparse and discontinuous (Photo 1) compared to upstream portions of the Illinois River and the parallel Michigan River. Mountain valley willow communities are increasingly viewed as complex, non-linear systems with multiple semi-stable states and interacting causal relations. In 2003, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) began employing an adaptive management approach to restoration of bottomland willow communities at...
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The intense demand for river water in arid regions is resulting in widespread changes in riparian vegetation. We present a direct gradient method to predict the vegetation change resulting from a proposed upstream dam or diversion. Our method begins with the definition of vegetative cover types, based on a census of the existing vegetation in a set of 1 x 2 m plots. A hydraulic model determines the discharge necessary to inundate each plot. We use the hydrologic record, as defined by a flow duration curve, to determine the inundation duration for each plot. This allows us to position cover types along a gradient of inundation duration. A change in river management results in a new flow duration curve, which is used...
This study explores how the relationship between flow and riparian vegetation varies along a montane river. We mapped occurrence of woody riparian plant communities along 58 km of the San Miguel River in southwest- ern Colorado. We determined the recurrence interval of inundation for each plant community by combining step-back- water hydraulic modeling at 4 representative reaches with Log-Pearson analysis of 4 stream gaging stations. Finally, we mapped bottomland surficial geology and used a Geographic Information System to overlay the coverages of geology and vegetation. Plant communities were distinctly arrayed along the hydrologic gradient. The Salix exigua Nuttall (sand- bar willow) community occurred mostly...


    map background search result map search result map Relating Riparian Vegetation to Present and Future Streamflows Riparian willow restoration at Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge Relating Riparian Vegetation to Present and Future Streamflows Riparian willow restoration at Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge