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Stream Habitat Protection & Fish Passage

stream habitat protection and fish passage









Adding or creating stream habitat components to improve habitat for aquatic species and removing stream barriers that block their movement.

How it works

Most stream habitat work strives to restore habitat components, such as pools, riffles, large wood or side channels that are missing. This includes adding habitat elements to a stream, removing passage barriers, or creating habitat elements to promote stream health and function as well as providing habitat for aquatic species.

How it helps

  • Provides unrestricted movement for aquatic species, sediment and wood through the system
  • Reduces streambank erosion
  • Improves nutrient exchange and increases foraging capabilities of aquatic species by slowing stream flows
  • Provides cover, resting areas during migration, and spawning and feeding habitat for aquatics

  • Adds beauty and value to an operation

Planning ahead

  • What fish species do you have in your stream?
  • Is there an adequate supply of materials on your property?
  • Is there adequate habitat available upstream?
  • Could invasive aquatic species move into areas occupied by native species?
  • Will stream flows be redirected and erode a neighbor’s bank?
  • Are ESA considerations or special permits required?

Technical notes

  • Obtain any necessary permits.
  • Protective vegetative cover should be established on exposed surfaces.
  • Keep livestock from the area until the vegetation is established, and then livestock can go into the area but only according to a grazing plan.
  • Stream work will require expertise from biologists and engineers to prevent damage to downstream landowners.


  • You may need to plant riparian vegetation on exposed soils until a good stand is established.
  • Fish passage structures may require inspection and/or cleaning, depending upon the type used at your site.
  • Use weed management to maintain desirable plant and animal species.