Event Title

A GIS Based Biophysical Framework to Inform Fish Habitat Assessment and Restoration in the Columbia River Basin

Presenter Information

Nadine Trahan

Location

ECC 303

Event Website

http://water.usu.edu/

Start Date

3-4-2012 11:40 AM

End Date

3-4-2012 12:00 PM

Description

Considerations of fish and habitat responses to restoration activities will be most informative and sustainable if appraised within the appropriate spatio-temporal context of their natural and impacted environments. Toward this end, Eco Logical Research (ELR) has been developing and implementing survey designs for fish and their habitat in stream restoration in the Columbia River Basin (CRB) for over a decade. An extensive range of ecological, hydrological and geomorphic spatial data describing fish and habitat variables are collected both in the field and remotely within restoration watersheds. GIS (Geographic Information Systems) data structure, tools and mapping technologies are used to organize and process monitoring data, conduct geo-spatial analyses and share results. In advancing techniques to support the implementation and assessment of restoration efforts, ELR is developing a GIS based biophysical framework, reflecting multi-disciplinary eco-hydromorphic principles with which biological and physical relationships can readily and coherently be appraised. The GIS based CRB Biophysical Framework is first being developed as a proof of concept for the Asotin watershed in southeastern Washington. The Framework comprises ArcGIS spatial and non-spatial data organized and documented within relational geo-databases and customized map documents, and geo-processing toolboxes to support data development, analyses and mapping. Deliverables will provide a packaged, user friendly, live mapping utility that can be used to identify, describe and explain the biophysical context for the Asotin watershed and its context within the CRB. While it is presently being developed specifically for the Asotin, it will be readily available as a template from which to implement other watersheds in the CRB. Development of this framework and its application are based on the River Styles Framework (RiverStyles.com) which provides both the conceptual model that places streams into their landscape specific, biophysical context and a set of procedures that can be followed to develop geo-spatial data describing this context for a given reach. River Styles is a geomorphologic framework comprising an interdisciplinary conceptual model and a set of guidelines, procedures and tasks that walk users through four sequential stages in the framing of reaches into their biophysical context. The first stage conducts a catchmentwide baseline survey of river character and behavior, essentially classifying reaches into representative types. This stage identifies and explains hierarchical patterns and relationships, as it utilizes both top-down and bottom-up scalar metrics derived from remote sensing and field data respectively. Condition assessment is the second stage, which steps through the assessment of geomorphic river condition in terms of river evolution and expected condition. Analysis of recovery potential is conducted in the third stage, via procedures to predict the likelihood of future condition based on location specific controls and constraints. Finally, the results from each of these stages are appraised and summarized in the fourth stage, in terms of implications for river management activities. Incorporating biophysical monitoring data into GIS based on the River Styles’ framework informs both multi-scalar fish-habitat associations and those related to longitudinal connectivity. This framework will provide a coherent template for ongoing development and sharing in line with adaptive management objectives.

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Apr 3rd, 11:40 AM Apr 3rd, 12:00 PM

A GIS Based Biophysical Framework to Inform Fish Habitat Assessment and Restoration in the Columbia River Basin

ECC 303

Considerations of fish and habitat responses to restoration activities will be most informative and sustainable if appraised within the appropriate spatio-temporal context of their natural and impacted environments. Toward this end, Eco Logical Research (ELR) has been developing and implementing survey designs for fish and their habitat in stream restoration in the Columbia River Basin (CRB) for over a decade. An extensive range of ecological, hydrological and geomorphic spatial data describing fish and habitat variables are collected both in the field and remotely within restoration watersheds. GIS (Geographic Information Systems) data structure, tools and mapping technologies are used to organize and process monitoring data, conduct geo-spatial analyses and share results. In advancing techniques to support the implementation and assessment of restoration efforts, ELR is developing a GIS based biophysical framework, reflecting multi-disciplinary eco-hydromorphic principles with which biological and physical relationships can readily and coherently be appraised. The GIS based CRB Biophysical Framework is first being developed as a proof of concept for the Asotin watershed in southeastern Washington. The Framework comprises ArcGIS spatial and non-spatial data organized and documented within relational geo-databases and customized map documents, and geo-processing toolboxes to support data development, analyses and mapping. Deliverables will provide a packaged, user friendly, live mapping utility that can be used to identify, describe and explain the biophysical context for the Asotin watershed and its context within the CRB. While it is presently being developed specifically for the Asotin, it will be readily available as a template from which to implement other watersheds in the CRB. Development of this framework and its application are based on the River Styles Framework (RiverStyles.com) which provides both the conceptual model that places streams into their landscape specific, biophysical context and a set of procedures that can be followed to develop geo-spatial data describing this context for a given reach. River Styles is a geomorphologic framework comprising an interdisciplinary conceptual model and a set of guidelines, procedures and tasks that walk users through four sequential stages in the framing of reaches into their biophysical context. The first stage conducts a catchmentwide baseline survey of river character and behavior, essentially classifying reaches into representative types. This stage identifies and explains hierarchical patterns and relationships, as it utilizes both top-down and bottom-up scalar metrics derived from remote sensing and field data respectively. Condition assessment is the second stage, which steps through the assessment of geomorphic river condition in terms of river evolution and expected condition. Analysis of recovery potential is conducted in the third stage, via procedures to predict the likelihood of future condition based on location specific controls and constraints. Finally, the results from each of these stages are appraised and summarized in the fourth stage, in terms of implications for river management activities. Incorporating biophysical monitoring data into GIS based on the River Styles’ framework informs both multi-scalar fish-habitat associations and those related to longitudinal connectivity. This framework will provide a coherent template for ongoing development and sharing in line with adaptive management objectives.

http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/runoff/2012/AllAbstracts/19