Presentation Title

Incorporating Puget Sound Lowland Streams in Marine Shoreline Prioritization

Session Title

Session S-10D: Cross-Habitat Linkages and Landscape Scale Approaches to Ecosystem Management

Conference Track

Species and Food Webs

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2014 : Seattle, Wash.)

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Start Date

2-5-2014 1:30 PM

End Date

2-5-2014 3:00 PM

Abstract

Here we present our methodology for incorporating the almost 300 lowland streams present in South Sound into a marine nearshore prioritization model. Our approach utilized a coarse depiction of current habitat conditions that were considered in context of restoration strategies for- Creation, Enhancement, Restoration, Conservation and Preservation. The analysis unit chosen for this project was the watershed catchment unit as defined by the Salmon and Steelhead Habitat Inventory and Assessment Program (SSHIAP, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission). These are reach scale units that represent the drainage areas based upon channel gradient and confinement. Analysis units were further refined into three geographic strata. 1.Upland Catchments (UC) - units adjacent to catchments on a marine shoreline. 2.Nearshore Catchments (NC), defined as units on the shoreline that include the interface between the terrestrial and marine nearshore environments. 3.Nearshore Zones (NZ), strata units encompassing up to 200 meters of the shoreline as designated by the SSHIAP analysis. The primary attributes for determining the degree of human impacts was derived from NOAA C-CAP land cover data (2010). This allowed us to quantitatively define the amount of development impairing natural ecosystem functions. Additional negative impacts associated with stream mouths included: 303D impaired water, toxic sites, fill, armoring, docks, and freshwater point sources. A focus for juvenile salmon was applied by using attributes from the Nearshore Project Selection Tool (2009). The main habitat attribute is the location of freshwater stream inputs in catchments of interest. Stream location was obtained from SSHIAP and a rudimentary ranking scheme was applied that incorporated salmonid usage. The presence of a stream was perceived as a ‘positive’ ecosystem processes / function for juvenile salmon. Attribute data was considered according to varying scoring schemes to evaluate ecosystem conditions. In most instances attribute data was considered in terms of a presence/absence tally according to perceived positive (+) ecosystem attributes versus negative (-) ecosystem stressors. Catchment scores were used to evaluate site versus landscape scale relationships. At the site level scores for individual catchments were calculated. At the landscape level comparisons were done using proximity of catchments to each other. Adjacent catchments sharing a common border were considered “neighbors”. The two approaches detailed above were used to provide some inference to site versus landscape scale relationships in terms of the degree of ecosystem integrity/impairment. Results can be used to translate quantitative scores into general restoration and conservation strategies at the site and landscape level for discrete areas.

Rights

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Language

English

Format

application/pdf

Type

Text

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May 2nd, 1:30 PM May 2nd, 3:00 PM

Incorporating Puget Sound Lowland Streams in Marine Shoreline Prioritization

Room 611-612

Here we present our methodology for incorporating the almost 300 lowland streams present in South Sound into a marine nearshore prioritization model. Our approach utilized a coarse depiction of current habitat conditions that were considered in context of restoration strategies for- Creation, Enhancement, Restoration, Conservation and Preservation. The analysis unit chosen for this project was the watershed catchment unit as defined by the Salmon and Steelhead Habitat Inventory and Assessment Program (SSHIAP, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission). These are reach scale units that represent the drainage areas based upon channel gradient and confinement. Analysis units were further refined into three geographic strata. 1.Upland Catchments (UC) - units adjacent to catchments on a marine shoreline. 2.Nearshore Catchments (NC), defined as units on the shoreline that include the interface between the terrestrial and marine nearshore environments. 3.Nearshore Zones (NZ), strata units encompassing up to 200 meters of the shoreline as designated by the SSHIAP analysis. The primary attributes for determining the degree of human impacts was derived from NOAA C-CAP land cover data (2010). This allowed us to quantitatively define the amount of development impairing natural ecosystem functions. Additional negative impacts associated with stream mouths included: 303D impaired water, toxic sites, fill, armoring, docks, and freshwater point sources. A focus for juvenile salmon was applied by using attributes from the Nearshore Project Selection Tool (2009). The main habitat attribute is the location of freshwater stream inputs in catchments of interest. Stream location was obtained from SSHIAP and a rudimentary ranking scheme was applied that incorporated salmonid usage. The presence of a stream was perceived as a ‘positive’ ecosystem processes / function for juvenile salmon. Attribute data was considered according to varying scoring schemes to evaluate ecosystem conditions. In most instances attribute data was considered in terms of a presence/absence tally according to perceived positive (+) ecosystem attributes versus negative (-) ecosystem stressors. Catchment scores were used to evaluate site versus landscape scale relationships. At the site level scores for individual catchments were calculated. At the landscape level comparisons were done using proximity of catchments to each other. Adjacent catchments sharing a common border were considered “neighbors”. The two approaches detailed above were used to provide some inference to site versus landscape scale relationships in terms of the degree of ecosystem integrity/impairment. Results can be used to translate quantitative scores into general restoration and conservation strategies at the site and landscape level for discrete areas.