Monitoring for success in stream restoration: a case study of the Kama Creek, north shore of Lake Superior
DisciplineEnvironmental Studies : Northern Environments & Cultures
SubjectKama Creek restoration project
Growth of stream restoration projects
Water quality in respect to fish habitat requirements
MetadataShow full item record
This thesis investigates the use of success criteria to evaluate the changes induced by a small-scale stream restoration project. The research is based on a case study of the Kama Creek, Nipigon Bay, Lake Superior. Declines in coaster brook trout in the creek due to the realignment of the stream channel led to the need for restoration of the creek and its floodplain to its original configuration. The need for efficient post-project evaluation, particularly for small-scale projects, is evident and protecting Coaster brook trout (Savelinus fontinalis) habitat and spawning locations in the Lake Superior region is of considerable importance for fisheries management. Chemical, biological and physical assessments were completed on Kama Creek before and after restoration in order to evaluate ecological health and channel stability of the stream. Success criteria chosen were based on the requirements for the health of brook trout and the overall function and stability of the stream. Findings show that the restoration project has improved stream condition and habitat availability when compared to the pre-restoration conditions. The results showed an increase in the area of large pools and an accompanying increase in fish observed in the newly restored channel and in regions of the watershed once restricted by an impasse. There were exceptions to this success in regards to bank stabilization and sediment deposition, and future monitoring will be required to evaluate if conditions stabilize regardless of discharge and extreme rainfall, and to determine if human intervention is needed.