Abstract Title

Session S-04C: Importance of Puget Sound Lowland Streams

Presenter/Author Information

Andrew McAninch, Wild Fish ConservancyFollow

Keywords

Freshwater

Start Date

1-5-2014 8:30 AM

End Date

1-5-2014 10:00 AM

Description

In Washington, local and state government agencies rely on WA Dept. of Natural Resources (WADNR) water type maps to identify and protect streams. WADNR acknowledges that their regulatory water type maps are inaccurate and not to be taken at face value, but most agencies don’t have the resources to groundtruth the regulatory maps within their jurisdictions. As a result, many streams are not likely to receive the protection they warrant under existing regulations and efforts to effectively identify and prioritize fish habitat restoration/protection projects are compromised. Since 2000 Wild Fish Conservancy has been performing systematic water type assessments throughout the Puget lowlands to describe the magnitude and extent of mapping errors in the WADNR water type maps. Understanding how the WADNR regulatory water type maps were developed, along with the results of our extensive field efforts, has allowed us to describe the conditions where WADNR regulatory maps are least-accurate. Further, we are able to estimate the extent to which small Puget Sound drainages are misrepresented or unrepresented in the regulatory maps. With this information, Wild Fish Conservancy is working with partners to develop a LiDAR-based water type model that better-predicts the location and classification of small Puget Sound streams.

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May 1st, 8:30 AM May 1st, 10:00 AM

Assessing Misrepresented Streams in Regulatory Water Type Maps

Room 606

In Washington, local and state government agencies rely on WA Dept. of Natural Resources (WADNR) water type maps to identify and protect streams. WADNR acknowledges that their regulatory water type maps are inaccurate and not to be taken at face value, but most agencies don’t have the resources to groundtruth the regulatory maps within their jurisdictions. As a result, many streams are not likely to receive the protection they warrant under existing regulations and efforts to effectively identify and prioritize fish habitat restoration/protection projects are compromised. Since 2000 Wild Fish Conservancy has been performing systematic water type assessments throughout the Puget lowlands to describe the magnitude and extent of mapping errors in the WADNR water type maps. Understanding how the WADNR regulatory water type maps were developed, along with the results of our extensive field efforts, has allowed us to describe the conditions where WADNR regulatory maps are least-accurate. Further, we are able to estimate the extent to which small Puget Sound drainages are misrepresented or unrepresented in the regulatory maps. With this information, Wild Fish Conservancy is working with partners to develop a LiDAR-based water type model that better-predicts the location and classification of small Puget Sound streams.