Riparian Area Management Systems
Area Management Systems
conservation practices are commonly used to protect riparian areas from
A filter strip is an
area of vegetation established for the purpose of removing sediment, organic
material, and other pollutants from runoff and wastewater. Filter strips
are generally located at the lower edge(s) of a field to remove pollutants from
runoff before the material enters a body of water. They also serve as
buffers between water and the fields above the water so that pesticides and
other chemicals are not applied directly adjacent or into the water body.
Filter strips reduce sedimentation of streams, lakes and other bodies of water.
A riparian forest buffer
is an area of trees and/or shrubs located adjacent to and up-gradient to a body
of water. The vegetation extends outward from the water body for a
specified distance necessary to provide a minimum level of protection and/or
enhancement. This practice applies to areas adjacent to permanent or
intermittent streams, lakes, ponds, wetlands and areas associated with ground
water recharge. Purposes for the practice include:
To create shade to
lower water temperatures to improve habitat for aquatic organisms,
To provide a source of
detritus and large woody debris for aquatic and terrestrial organisms,
To create wildlife
habitat and establish wildlife corridors,
To reduce excess
amounts of sediment, organic material, nutrients and pesticides in surface
runoff and reduce excess nutrients and other chemicals in shallow ground
To provide protection
against scour erosion within the floodplain,
To restore natural
riparian plant communities,
To moderate winter
temperatures to reduce freezing of aquatic over-wintering habitats,
To increase carbon
A riparian herbaceous
cover practice consists of grasses, glass-like plants, and forbs along
watercourses or on the fringe of water bodies where the natural plant community
is dominated by herbaceous vegetation. These riparian areas provide
habitat (food, shelter, and water) for aquatic and terrestrial organisms.
They intercept direct solar radiation, create shade, and increase the depth to
width ratio to help maintain or restore suitable water temperatures for fish and
other aquatic organisms while providing a milder microclimate for
wildlife. They improve and protect water quality by reducing the amount of
sediment and other pollutants, such as pesticides, organic, and nutrients in
surface runoff as well as nutrients and chemicals in shallow ground water
flow. These riparian areas provide food, in the form of plant detritus,
for aquatic insects which are important food items for fish. They help
stabilize the channel bed and streambank, as well as serving as corridors to
provide landscape linkages between existing habitats. They provide room
for watercourses to establish geomorphic stability.
& SHORELINE PROTECTION
Using vegetation or
structural techniques to stabilize and protect banks of streams, lakes, or
excavated channels against scour and erosion. This practice applies to
natural or excavated channels where the streambanks are susceptible to erosion
from water, ice, debris, or to damage from livestock or vehicular traffic.
It also applies to controlling erosion on shorelines where the problem can be
solved with relatively simple structural measures, or vegetation.
Associated With Riparian Area Protection
practices which are typically associated with livestock or grazing systems also
provide tremendous resource benefits to riparian areas. These practices
are often located outside of the riparian area, however, they are used to help
protect the riparian system. Find descriptions of the following
conservation practices on
System Practices web page.
Trail & Walkway
For additional information related to
these conservation practices, visit the Vermont NRCS Conservation
Practice Information web page.
Waste Management System Practices
and Hayland Management System Practices
Control System Practices
and Wetland System Practices
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