Projects

Project Name

Therriault Creek Stream and Wetland Restoration

Category
River, Stream and Wetland Restoration
Client / Agency
Kootenai River Network, Inc.
Partners
Montana Fish, Wildilfe & Parks, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Geum Environmental Consulting, Inc.
Location
Eureka, Montana
Date
2004
Project Description
Similar to many western valleys, Therriault Creek once supported a broad, wet meadow complex characterized by a diverse mosaic of wetland plants and woody riparian shrubs. Channelized in the mid 1900s for agricultural purposes, the system downcut resulting in the loss of 68 acres of wetland, severe streambed and bank erosion, loss of aquatic habitat complexity, and impaired water quality. In 2004, RDG designed and implemented a comprehensive restoration strategy consisting of two miles of channel reconstruction at the historical floodplain elevation, and conversion of the existing degraded channel to off-channel open water and emergent wetland complexes. Revegetation efforts are ongoing at the project and have included over 2,000 containerized plants, use of solarization techniques to reduce the cover of reed canarygrass, and noxious weed management.
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Pre-restoration (1992) aerial photo of the project area Post restoration (2006) aerial photo of the project area Prior to restoration, the channel was incised and disconnected from the floodplain with high bank erodibility conditions The design reconnected the historical floodplain and incorporated a low gradient, meandering, riffle-pool stream type Channel straightening in the mid 1900's drained the 68 acre wet meadow complex The project restored approxiamtely 68 acres of prior converted emergent and shallow water wetland complexes
Pre-restoration (1992) aerial photo of the project area
Pre-restoration (1992) aerial photo of the project area showing the altered channel morphology.
Post restoration (2006) aerial photo of the project area
Post restoration (2006) aerial photo of the project area.
Prior to restoration, the channel was incised and disconnected from the floodplain with high bank erodibility conditions
Prior to restoration, the channel was incised and disconnected from the floodplain with high bank erodibility conditions.
The design reconnected the historical floodplain and incorporated a low gradient, meandering, riffle-pool stream type
The design reconnected the historical floodplain and incorporated a low gradient, meandering, riffle-pool stream type.
Channel straightening in the mid 1900's drained the 68 acre wet meadow complex
Channel straightening in the mid 1900's drained the 68 acre wet meadow complex.
The project restored approxiamtely 68 acres of prior converted emergent and shallow water wetland complexes
The project restored approxiamtely 68 acres of prior converted emergent and shallow water wetland complexes.