Our Conservation Approach

protect-reconnect-restore

The above Trout Unlimited graphic shows how we intend to preserve wild brook trout habitat and high water quality, and build resiliency into the Warner River watershed.

Protect
This project seeks to ensure the sustainability of wild brook trout by fostering local landowner and citizen stewardship and implementing sound conservation measures. Potential brook trout protection opportunities will be identified and result in a list of parcels where landowners are supportive of various protection projects on their property. By engaging with landowners on property visits, providing subsequent watershed reports and offering local conservation education we will increase awareness throughout the watershed. Our efforts will result in a higher level of appreciation of brook trout, cold-water stream habitat and high water quality. Landowners will be encouraged to designate riparian areas of streams into some form of protective easement.

 Reconnect
This project will identify stream crossings throughout the watershed that function as fish (and other aquatic species) habitat barriers. Collected stream crossing data will be coupled with fish data to prioritize stream crossing culvert replacements. This information will also identify, prioritize and fix stream crossings that pose the greatest risk of flood that threatens human life and damage to public and private property. The data obtained will be made available to numerous state agencies as well as all communities in the watershed.

 Restore
This project will identify potential habitat restoration opportunities and result in a list of parcels where landowners are supportive of various restoration and enhancement projects on their property. River and stream restoration techniques will be proposed in order to restore natural habitat features to areas altered by urban development, agricultural land use, logging, or flooding. The principles of fluvial geomorphology are recommended to design appropriate channel characteristics according to watershed size, local climate, and site substrate type. Restoration activities could range from the complete physical reconstruction of the stream channel to the planting of shrubs and trees to improve bank stabilization. Other recommendations could include the restoration of watershed floodplains or adding dropped trees to headwater streams.

Sustain
This project will result in enhanced wild brook trout habitat and a more resilient and sustainable Warner River watershed. By exposing watershed vulnerabilities, educating and engaging landowners, community members, municipalities and students in our activities, we will sustain the benefits of cold water fisheries. By additionally encouraging communities to adopt local, state and federal ordinances and protective programs we will sustain our wild brookies, high water quality and maximize our existing ecosystem services for future generations to enjoy as we do today.

To learn how we hope to attain the above goals and our success so far, please consult our pages on Conservation Opportunities & Resources pages here.

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