Rocky Mountain Research Station Publications

RMRS Online Publication
RMRS-GTR-121: Guide to effective monitoring of aquatic and riparian resources

Kershner, Jeffrey L.; Archer, Eric K.; Coles-Ritchie, Marc; Cowley, Ervin R.; Henderson, Richard C.; Kratz, Kim; Quimby, Charles M.; Turner, David L.; Ulmer, Linda C.; Vinson, Mark R. 2004. Guide to effective monitoring of aquatic and riparian resources. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-121. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 57 p.

This monitoring plan for aquatic and riparian resources was developed in response to monitoring needs addressed in the Biological Opinions for bull trout (U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service 1998) and steelhead (U.S. Department of Commerce, National Marine Fisheries Service). It provides a consistent framework for implementing the effectiveness monitoring of aquatic and riparian resources within the range of the Pacific Anadromous Fish Strategy (PACFISH) and the Inland Fish Strategy (INFISH). The primary objective is to evaluate the effect of land management activities on aquatic and riparian communities at multiple scales and to determine whether PACFISH/INFISH management practices are effective in maintaining or improving the structure and function of riparian and aquatic conditions at both the landscape and watershed scales on Federal lands throughout the upper Columbia River Basin.

A list of attributes thought to be important in defining aquatic and riparian habitat conditions and their relationship with listed species were identified. The list of attributes was then translated into measurable criteria and compiled to form sampling protocols for both stream channel parameters (Part II) and vegetation parameters (Part III). These sampling methods were tested for variability, and the results are documented in two other publications "Testing Common Stream Sampling Methods for Broad-Scale, Long-Term Monitoring." (Archer and others 2004) and "The Repeatability of Riparian Vegetation Sampling Methods: How Useful Are These Techniques for Broad-Scale Monitoring?" (Coles-Ritchie and others, in preparation).

Keywords: effectiveness monitoring, stream habitat, riparian habitat, monitoring strategy, aquatic sampling, vegetation sampling, watershed conditions, critical riparian area

About PDFs: For best results, do not open the PDF in your Web browser. Right-click on the PDF link to download the PDF file directly to your computer. Click here for more PDF help or order a printed copy of this publication.

Download RMRS-GTR-121

PDF File Size: 3.7 MB

Title: RMRS-GTR-121: Guide to effective monitoring of aquatic and riparian resources
Electronic Publish Date: March 1, 2004
Last Update:
June 17, 2009

RMRS Publications | Order a publication | Contact Us