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Riparian Forestry
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Riparian Forestry



Presentation developed for a 2004 Woodland Advisor class in Andover MN.

Presentation developed for a 2004 Woodland Advisor class in Andover MN.



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  • Woodland Advisor Program Eli Sagor, University of Minnesota Extension Service

Riparian Forestry Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Lakeshore Management and Riparian Forestry Eli Sagor Regional Extension Educator Woodland Advisor Program
  • 2. Outline
    • Riparian forest functions
    • Tradeoffs in riparian forest management
    • Forest management for water quality (case study)
    • Minnesota’s Voluntary Forest Management Guidelines
    • Q&A
  • 3. Riparian Area: Definition
      • The area of land and water forming a transition from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems along streams, lakes and open water wetlands.
      • (From MFRC Guidelines, 1999)
  • 4. Riparian Forest Functions
    • Filtering surface runoff
      • Sediment: Roots slow water flow, draw water into soil, filter sediment
      • Pollution: Swamps and bogs filter chemical and biological contaminants
  • 5. Riparian Forest Functions
    • Mitigating peak flows
      • Roots slow water flow
      • Canopy slows rate of snow melt
      • Plants use water, reducing amount reaching stream
  • 6. Riparian Forest Functions
    • Regulating water temperature
      • Shading by forest canopy maintains cool temperatures necessary for many fish species
  • 7. Riparian Forest Functions
    • Contribution of organic matter
      • Large woody debris (logs)
        • Critical habitat elements: plunge pools, backwaters, eddies, debris dams and individual logs
      • Coarse particulate organic matter (leaves)
        • Energy
  • 8. Riparian Forest Functions: BREAKDOWNS
    • Filtering surface runoff
      • Lack of filtering  more sediment and pollution reach water body, harming spawning sites and clogging gills.
  • 9. Riparian Forest Functions: BREAKDOWNS
    • Mitigating peak flows
      • Lack of flow mitigation  peak flows increase and blowout risk increases. Leads to major sediment inputs and flooding.
  • 10. Riparian Forest Functions: BREAKDOWNS
    • Regulating water temperature
      • Lack of shading  water temps rise and habitat becomes unsuitable for some species
  • 11. Riparian Forest Functions: BREAKDOWNS
    • Contribution of organic matter
      • Lack of organic matter  changes in dissolved Oxygen, loss of critical habitat elements mentioned earlier.
  • 12.
    • What causes the breakdowns in riparian forest function?
      • Loss of riparian forest.
      • Extensive loss of forest cover throughout the watershed, regardless of riparian area condition.
  • 13. Tradeoffs
  • 14. Tradeoffs
    • Costs of “good” management in Riparian Areas:
      • Reduced volume available for timber harvest
      • Time to understand guidelines
      • Time to plan Riparian Management Zone
      • Time spent explaining requirements to logger
  • 15. Tradeoffs
    • Two questions:
      • Who benefits from forest practices that preserve water quality?
      • Who pays for it on private land?
  • 16. Source: Miles et al . 1995
  • 17.  
  • 18. Forest Management FOR Water Quality
  • 19. Forest Management FOR Water Quality
    • What???
  • 20. Forest Management FOR Water Quality
    • The more diverse a forest is, the less likely that any one disturbance will wipe it all out.
  • 21.  
  • 22. Case Study: Quabbin Reservoir
    • Boston’s water supply
    • 25,000 acre reservoir and surrounding 56,000 acres of primarily forested watershed land.
    • One single objective: KEEP BOSTON’S WATER CLEAN AND SAFE
  • 23. Case Study: Quabbin Reservoir
    • Varied terrain with steep hillsides, high ridge tops, beaver ponds, swamps and streams.
    • Mainly mature hardwood (67%) with some conifer (33%).
  • 24. Case Study: Quabbin Reservoir
    • Local disturbance regime:
      • Hurricanes are the most common severe natural disturbance
  • 25. Case Study: Quabbin Reservoir
    • Management approach:
      • Maintain a forest with several different age classes well represented on each site.
      • Small-group selection, primarily.
  • 26. From: Smith et al. 1998
  • 27.  
  • 28.  
  • 29. Back to Minnesota…
    • Voluntary Site-Level Forest
    • Management Guidelines
  • 30. MFRC Guidelines
    • MFRC Guidelines
    • Management approaches that consider all the values of the forest
      • Financial, ecological, social / cultural
      • Variety of spatial scales
  • 31. MFRC Guidelines
    • How to actually put this into practice on the ground?
  • 32. Defining Terms
    • Riparian Management Zones
    • vs.
    • Riparian Areas
  • 33. MFRC Guidelines
    • The guidelines:
      • Provide specific recommendations for foresters and loggers working in the woods.
      • Reduce the complexity associated with managing for numerous objectives in diverse ecosystems.
  • 34. MFRC Guidelines
    • General Guidelines
    • Forest Roads
    • Timber Harvesting
    • Mechanical Site Prep
    • Pesticide Use
    • Timber Stand Improvement
    • Fire Management
    • Forest Recreation
    • Reforestation
    Binder contains the following sections :
  • 35.  
  • 36.  
  • 37.  
  • 38.  
  • 39. MFRC Guidelines
    • The guidelines are entirely voluntary.
  • 40. MFRC Guidelines
    • Example 1:
      • Joe & Verna Pyeweed own 80 acres in Central Minnesota with rolling terrain and a stream running through their property. They own the land for recreational and stewardship purposes, but not really to make money.
  • 41. MFRC Guidelines
    • Example 1, continued:
      • Joe would like to conduct a timber sale to create young aspen stands to promote deer and grouse populations. The best spot to do this is in a relatively low, moist stand near the stream.
  • 42. MFRC Guidelines
    • Example 2:
      • Anders Halverson manages his 240 acres of red pine plantations downstream from Joe and Verna mainly as a source of income. The terrain and soil conditions are similar.
  • 43. MFRC Guidelines
    • Difference between recommendations for Joe and Anders?
      • Management objectives are different, and the “cost” of a wider RMZ is less for Joe.
      • Guidelines would suggest that Joe retain a wider RMZ.
      • Both would use a wide filter strip.
  • 44.  
  • 45.  
  • 46. Looking to the Future
  • 47. Looking to the Future
    • Forest managers and governments are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of clean water.
      • Clinton’s chief of the Forest Service was an aquatic ecologist.
  • 48. Looking to the Future
    • More and more eyes will be on forest managers to act as good stewards of the land and water.
      • Forest practices regulations to become less voluntary?
  • 49. Looking to the Future
    • Forest management will become more complex: more variables to weigh and more people watching.
      • This is good! The most creative foresters are the best ones.
  • 50. Looking to the Future
    • Increased complexity means we need more educational opportunities for foresters and citizens / landowners.
      • This is good too. Landowners need to understand and take responsibility for the impacts of their decisions.
  • 51.
    • Questions, or head outside?
  • 52.