Star Tribune report on stream rehab

General trout, fishing, conservation, or anything outdoors related discussion. Trip reports and stream conditions welcome, but please do not name streams.
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S.T.Fanatic
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by S.T.Fanatic »

Cutthroat wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:35 pm
S.T.Fanatic wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 1:12 pm

This begs the question, "why do any habitat work at all"? There are many miles of stream where no habitat work has been done and there are more than enough trout providing natural reproduction and sustaining a reasonable amount of harvest. The streams in these sections also change from year to year and dont cost tax payers hundreds of thousands of dollars to "restore" and then "fix".
I would argue that on MANY streams there would be a LOT of poor trout habitat and mediocre trout fishing due to the channel destruction that has resulted from 150 years of unwise and unsustainable land use in these watersheds. Stream flow and water temps can improve by just implementing some common sense land use practices, but the natural processes that develop reasonably stable stream channels and healthy aquatic habitats takes a LONG time--probably many human lifetimes.

If we are talking sustainability and improvements taking many lifetimes, I would argue that more is being bitten off than we can chew. Why not do shorter sections, spend more money (per foot) and do a better job? If that means only completing a couple hundred yards per project per year, so be it. The tax money that funds these projects keeps coming in. By slowing down the amount of work being done as well as the amount of money being spent, it is only a matter of time before the interest gained out weighs the projects cost.
“What more delightful avocation than to take a piece of land and by cautious experimentation to prove how it works. What more substantial service to conservation than to practice it on one's own land?” Aldo Leopold

S.T.Fanatic
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by S.T.Fanatic »

S.T.Fanatic wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 6:47 am
What I'm getting at is sections of streams where there has been no "improvement" fared much better in the high water events than these recent "improved" sections.

I love prairie grasses but you need to go about it the right way. With the high amount of soil disturbance that takes place when a project is done you need to use something that is much quicker to establish. You cant just broadcast prairie grass seed on disturbed soil and cover it with an erosion fabric and call it good. It would be much better to use quick establishing annual grasses and cereal grains that put down roots over 24" in a very short order while the natives have a chance to establish.

Timing is another important factor. Why do any work before June first? You know dam well that we get a fair amount of rain here every spring. The morning dew that comes with the humid months of summer is more than enough moisture to germinate seed. During drier times roots actually grow much deeper at a faster rate because they are in search of moisture to flourish. You cant judge a plant by what you see above ground. Every project should also be completed and seeded by Sept. 1. Most years Sept. and especially Oct. a lot of rain also falls. If grasses aren't actively growing by that time there is going to be erosion that takes place.


Tom, I'd like to hear how the MB project held up to the torrential down pour that we got yesterday evening. If it was already having erosion issues it's in trouble again.
“What more delightful avocation than to take a piece of land and by cautious experimentation to prove how it works. What more substantial service to conservation than to practice it on one's own land?” Aldo Leopold

High Stick
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Location: Driftless and The West

Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by High Stick »

If we are talking sustainability and improvements taking many lifetimes, I would argue that more is being bitten off than we can chew. Why not do shorter sections, spend more money (per foot) and do a better job? If that means only completing a couple hundred yards per project per year, so be it. The tax money that funds these projects keeps coming in. By slowing down the amount of work being done as well as the amount of money being spent, it is only a matter of time before the interest gained outweighs the projects cost.
I can get behind this logic. If you're going to do HI, do it right, make it last, and stop the current trend of more miles means successful HI.

brntrout
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by brntrout »

Cutthroat Quote: If we are talking sustainability and improvements taking many lifetimes, I would argue that more is being bitten off than we can chew. Why not do shorter sections, spend more money (per foot) and do a better job? If that means only completing a couple hundred yards per project per year, so be it. The tax money that funds these projects keeps coming in. By slowing down the amount of work being done as well as the amount of money being spent, it is only a matter of time before the interest gained out weighs the projects cost.


You're right on the money literally! That is what the LSOHC thought after we did the habitat tour of a number of washed out Rosgens/WD type projects on April 18th. To be exact they thought it would be beneficial to do less miles of streams but do higher quality work even if the initial cost is higher than previous Rosgen's WD projects. The main problem in the past was MNTU trying to do 8 to 10 miles of stream work a year state wide on a limited budget and the Rosgen's WD designed projects ( cheaper) fit their budget. Unfortunately, that kind of habitat design work may be slightly cheaper but it does not hold up at all. The LSOHC members on the tour flat out said they did not mind funding higher budget projects as long as they are designed to be durable ( use of rock)and actually provide real trout habitat.

The LSOHC will be meeting on June 20th and all the issues with these bad projects (lack of rock to stabilize banks and limited trout habitat) will be brought up. I'm sure the resolution will be to do less miles, but of higher quality work, and use proper materials so projects do not wash away and make sure good trout habitat is designed into these MNTU proposed projects.

IMO, MNTU should be doing about 4 or 5 miles a year not 8 or 10 miles. Trying to do that many miles in that short a time frame usually means short cuts end up being taken and the end result is poorly and constructed projects that do not hold up very well, no matter how they are designed!
Last edited by brntrout on Wed Jun 05, 2019 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

brntrout
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by brntrout »

S.T.Fanatic wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 6:47 am
Tom, I'd like to hear how the MB project held up to the torrential down pour that we got yesterday evening. If it was already having erosion issues it's in trouble again.
As I stated before, we checked out the MB WW State Park project yesterday and there was already some erosion control blanket rolled up or washed away and bank erosion is just beginning to start in a number of places. In some places logs were placed along the banks on outside bends and some have washed away. In other places other logs placed on outside bends were just laying there lose ready to be washed away the next minor high water event.


In SE MN receiving rains that raise stream levels 3 or 4 feet is nothing out of the ordinary. In normal years we get events like that, or even higher water levels 3 to 6 times a year NOT including the spring runoff. Point being, the recent minor high water event is not an abnormal event and the project should not be starting to come unraveled after just one normal high water event! IMO the MB WW State Park project will be lucky to survive a year or two at most?

jrs
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by jrs »

High Stick wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 9:38 am
I can get behind this logic. If you're going to do HI, do it right, make it last, and stop the current trend of more miles means successful HI.
To that sums up my feelings exactly! There has been too much focus on miles and cost per mile as measures of success.

habitat
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by habitat »

lot's of crabby replies. Not much in the way of a positive attitude. Maybe too many projects going to other contractors, I don't know. Most of the complaints have already been addressed. We use short term oats and other grasses with the prairie seeds when we plant. We are now using much more rock than we used to, thanks to help from the Legacy people, John L. & Tom D. We are just beginning a project on the Vermillion now. I have never seen a TCTU project start before July in the last 10 years due to wet weather. Come out and walk a stream project with the people actively working these projects and see that we are doing the very things that you say we should. Help instead of armchair criticism goes a long ways.

brntrout
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by brntrout »

If telling the truth about bad projects means one is crabby then I guess I'm surprised there isn't "A LOT MORE" crabby people.

High Stick
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Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2017 6:19 am
Location: Driftless and The West

Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by High Stick »

Once the Ian Chisholm's, John Lenczewskis, and Paul Krolaks of the world get out of stream restoration, then I'll be less crabby.

Oh, that and the past failed projects that wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money.

On that note, I'm out the door for a day of fishing. Lots of March Browns and some Light Hendricksons last weekend. My guess is fewer MB, maybe a few LH, but definitely a dry and dropper day.

S.T.Fanatic
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Re: Star Tribune report on stream rehab

Post by S.T.Fanatic »

habitat wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:27 pm
lot's of crabby replies. Not much in the way of a positive attitude. Maybe too many projects going to other contractors, I don't know. Most of the complaints have already been addressed. We use short term oats and other grasses with the prairie seeds when we plant. We are now using much more rock than we used to, thanks to help from the Legacy people, John L. & Tom D. We are just beginning a project on the Vermillion now. I have never seen a TCTU project start before July in the last 10 years due to wet weather. Come out and walk a stream project with the people actively working these projects and see that we are doing the very things that you say we should. Help instead of armchair criticism goes a long ways.
Those projects are a complete joke, with nothing to be happy about. I hate good habitat work let alone horseshit habitat work. Last fall I walked the completely destroyed rush creek project just shaking my head wondering where all the good holes went.
“What more delightful avocation than to take a piece of land and by cautious experimentation to prove how it works. What more substantial service to conservation than to practice it on one's own land?” Aldo Leopold

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