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Stream Protection

example of stream protectionStream protection is a practice that protects streams by excluding livestock and establishing buffer zones of vegetation to filter runoff. Riparian vegetative buffers are strips of grass, trees or shrubs established along streams, ditches, wetlands or other water bodies. Riparian buffers trap sediment, filter nutrients, and provide habitat and corridors for fish and wildlife.

How it helps...

  • Stream banks are covered with grass, trees, or other cover to reduce erosion
  • Better water quality results from reducing amounts of nutrients, chemicals, animal waste, and sediment entering the stream
  • Buffer zones provide cover and habitat for birds and small animals


  • Soil Erosion
  • Water Quality
  • Wildlife


  • Work with a conservationist to select plants for the buffer and determine its width.
  • Soil conservation measures will be needed above filter strips to keep them from being overloaded with sediment.
  • Control grazing on buffer areas.
  • Rills or small channels may develop in grass areas and need to be repaired and reseeded.
  • Control weeds and brush in grass buffers.
  • Delay mowing grass areas until after July 15 to protect nesting birds.
  • Remove sediment and reseed the buffer periodically.