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Keyword: watershed

Controls on the size and occurrence of pools in coarse-grained forest rivers

Publications Posted on: August 01, 2018
Controls on pool formation are examined in gravel- and cobble-bed rivers in forest mountain drainage basins of northern California, southern Oregon, and southeastern Alaska. We demonstrate that the majority of pools at our study sites are formed by flow obstructions and that pool geometry and frequency largely depend on obstruction characteristics (size, type, and frequency).

Vegetation patterns and abundances of amphibians and small mammals along small streams in a northwestern California watershed

Publications Posted on: August 01, 2018
Our goal was to describe and evaluate patterns of association between stream size and abundances of amphibians and small mammals in a northwestern California watershed. We sampled populations at 42 stream sites and eight upland sites within a 100- watershed in 1995 and 1996. Stream reaches sampled ranged from poorly defined channels that rarely flowed to 10-m-wide channels with perennial flow.

Our forests in the [water] balance

Pages Posted on: May 15, 2018
  Climate change is not only causing temperatures to rise, it is also altering the amount and type of precipitation that falls across the western United States. Research shows a trend of increasingly dry “dry years,” meaning droughts are becoming more severe and streams are flowing lower during these periods. Forests play an important role in delivering high quality water to streams, but climate change is affecting this role. Drought can cause tree mortality due to lack of water or reduced resistance to insects and disease. Dry fuels and stressed vegetation in forests also increases the potential for large wildfires. When many trees die in a forest fire or from disease or insect outbreaks, the amount of water entering nearby streams often increases. However, so does the delivery of sediment to these streams through erosion. These changes call on resource managers and communities in the West to start conversations today about addressing water supplies in the future. In addition, silviculturists, fuel specialists, and aquatic ecologists can work together to maintain a holistic view of ecosystems that, above all, considers where forests fit in the water balance.

From watersheds to the web: Online tools for modeling forest soil erosion

Pages Posted on: April 05, 2018
Forest erosion can lead to topsoil loss, and also to damaging deposits of sediment in aquatic ecosystems. For this reason, forest managers must be able to estimate the erosion potential of both planned management activities and catastrophic events, in order to decide where to use limited funds to focus erosion control efforts. To meet this need, scientists from RMRS (and collaborators) have spent over a decade developing a suite of online tools that can be used to predict erosion potential of forest alterations such as road building, forest management, and wildfire, as part of the Forest Service-Water Erosion Prediction Project (FS-WEPP). FS-WEPP is being continually refined, improved, and expanded upon to increase its usefulness, and to enable managers to run predictive watershed models for better land management decision-making and more desirable outcomes.

Forest management to protect Colorado’s water resources: A synthesis report to support House Bill 16-1255

Publications Posted on: December 14, 2017
The Colorado Water Plan is a collaborative framework that sets forth objectives, goals and actions by which Coloradans can collectively address current and future water challenges through feasible and innovative solutions.

Stream water quality concerns linger long after the smoke clears: Learning from Front Range wildfires

Publications Posted on: December 14, 2017
Large, high-severity wildfires alter the ecological processes that determine how watersheds retain and release nutrients and affect stream water quality. These changes usually abate a few years after a fire but recent studies indicate they may persist longer than previously expected.

Air, soil, and water resources and quality

Pages Posted on: February 06, 2017
Air, soil, and water resources and quality provide the foundation for ecosystems and ecosystem services. These publications and tools include valuable information in these areas, including spatial modeling tools and publications specific to certain regions.

A rapid response database in support of post-fire hydrological modeling

Publications Posted on: January 06, 2017
Being prepared for an emergency is important. Every year wildfires threaten homes and lives, but danger persists even after the flames are extinguished. Post-fire flooding and erosion (Figure 1) can threaten lives, property, and natural resources.

Soils [Chapter 5]

Publications Posted on: May 12, 2016
This report describes the soils of the Lost Lake, West Glacier Lake, and East Glacier Lake watersheds of GLEES and presents the methods used in conducting both the field and laboratory work. In addition, general statements about the nature of the mapping units used in making the soil maps are provided.

Meteorology [Chapter 7]

Publications Posted on: May 12, 2016
GLEES is contained within the Snowy Range Observatory. This Observatory consists of many weather stations, precipitation monitors, and stream gages scattered throughout the Snowy Range. These sites have been operated by the Wyoming Water Research Center (WWRC) since 1968. Data from the sites are available from the WWRC and were last summarized by Wesche (1982).