HAMMOND RIVER RESTORATION| RESTAURATION DE LA RIVIÈRE HAMMOND
Evan and Rhyse working hard to stabilize the bank.
Slumping that occurs as a result of little to no trees to stabilize the banks. Here we can see how roots are stabilizing the bank, but without deep taproots penetrating deeper, bank collapse occurs.
This picture was taken in 2017, showing the result of the 1998 restoration efforts of the HRAA
Over 5000 willow and dogwood stakes were planted along the Hammond River through this project. This project, located approximately 1 kilometer upstream of the Hammond River Conservation Centre, reclaimed 3 kilometers of shoreline thanks to funding from the Recreational Fisheries Conservation Partnerships Program.
During the fall of 2017, HRAA staff planted stakes along banks adjacent to 5 well known pools (Steele’s, Crowley’s, Len’s, Island, and Deep Hole) in the lower main-stem of the Hammond River. Willow stakes sourced from an area upstream of French Village Bridge were planted, as they are more tolerant of ice scour. These stakes are great for establishing vegetation in the area. If these stakes are ripped out of the banks by ice scour they can re-establish themselves downstream. It is because of this evolutionary adaption that we can use cuttings (stakes) to establish full trees/shrubs.
In 1998, the HRAA completed a similar project by planting willows immediately downstream of this site and now 20 years later they are full sized trees! Hopefully in 20 years, the stakes we planted in 2017 will look just as good!
Plus de 5 000 pieux de bois de saule et de cornouiller ont été plantés le long de la rivière Hammond dans le cadre de ce projet. Ce projet, situé à environ 1 kilomètre en amont du Centre de conservation de la rivière Hammond, a permis de récupérer 3 kilomètres de littoral grâce au financement du Programme de partenariats pour la conservation des pêches récréatives. À l'automne 2017, le personnel de HRAA a planté des piquets le long des berges adjacentes à cinq bassins bien connus (Steele, Crowley, Len, Island et Deep Hole) dans la partie inférieure de la rivière Hammond. Des piquets de saule provenant d'une région en amont du pont du village français ont été plantés, car ils tolèrent mieux l'érosion par la glace. Ces enjeux sont parfaits pour établir la végétation dans la région. Si ces enjeux sont arrachés des berges par l'érosion par la glace, ils peuvent se rétablir en aval. C'est à cause de cette adaptation évolutive que nous pouvons utiliser des boutures pour établir des arbres / arbustes entiers. En 1998, l'HRAA a complété un projet similaire en plantant des saules immédiatement en aval de ce site et maintenant, 20 ans plus tard, ce sont des arbres de taille normale! Espérons que dans 20 ans, les enjeux que nous avons plantés en 2017 seront tout aussi bons!
COMMUNITIES IN ACTION FOR A BETTER BRADLEY BROOK
COMMUNAUTÉES EN ACTION POUR UN MEILLEUR BRADLEY BROOK
The HRAA has completed a 2 phase project to improve conditions in Bradley Brook. Our project "Communities in Action for a Better Bradley Brook" is sponsored by EcoAction through Environment and Climate Change Canada. The first phase has restored 0.4 hectares of riparian buffer from fallow pasture at the confluence of Bradley Brook with the Hammond River. Riparian trees along the brook will function to stabilize banks, reduce sedimentation, improve water filtration, and reduce overall stream temperatures. The HRAA has partnered with local schools, the Town of Rothesay and Quispamsis to host a 4 km stream clean up along Bradley Brook. Bradley Brook had the highest density of garbage of the region and this work required many hands! Thank you to our volunteers!
The HRAA asked our community to share areas of concern for future projects, and now we are delivering! Crowley's pool, located off the Stock Farm Road, has been a historically popular local fishing hole. It was actually anglers at this very pool, in 1975, that first initiated talks of forming an angling group for the Hammond River. Despite our community's love for this fishing pool, there has been an evident decline in fish abundance, and environmental quality here. Erosion has become quite severe in this area, the banks are barren, and up to 7 m high in some areas.
In 2016, the HRAA received funding from the Habitat Stewardship Program Prevention Stream to conduct a hydrological site assessment of the area. This site assessment was completed by Dillon Consulting and resulted in a deeper understanding of the mechanisms driving erosion and infilling in the area. Restoration designs for the pool's bank were completed however, we are awaiting on approval of funding to complete the work. The HRAA has approached the town of Quispamsis for partnership on funding this work and the Town Council have unanimously agreed to include funding for this project in their 2023 budget! Once a grant is secured, multiple sources of funding will be needed to complete the project. The restoration work is designed to restore this valuable fish habitat and prevent further infilling. It is our goal to find a mutually acceptable way to solve issues of erosion and the potential loss of the Stock Farm Road at Crowley's Pool.
Proposal - "Crowley's Pool Collaborative"
This project includes a large-scale restoration of Crowley’s Pool, critical habitat for multiple aquatic species at risk, while implementing a variety of research, monitoring and assessment techniques, all of which will contribute to recovery actions and revitalize aquatic species at risk populations. The proposed activities herein will contribute to the rehabilitation of multidimensional ecosystem functions, reinstate wetlands, and increase spawning platforms for aquatic species at risk. By working with multiple partners, including Indigenous communities, this project will greatly increase public education and engagement in conservation. The benefits of this project will create a resilient and long-lasting legacy. Even in its infancy, this project proposal has already garnered public attention- the Telegraph Journal and local radio outlets have published articles on the proposed collaborative effort to remediate Crowley’s Pool!
Goal 1- Restoration of Crowley’s Pool: Crowley’s Pool (45.445525, -65.907886) is located in the Bay of Fundy region in New Brunswick, and the pool is a historic cold-water Atlantic salmon holding pool during fall spawning migration into the Hammond River, and a critical holding pool in the spring for kelt on their way back to the ocean. Crowley’s Pool provides critical habitat and migratory passage for American Eel and Striped Bass. As a result of climate change, extreme flooding and spring freshet events, Crowley’s Pool has degraded significantly. Erosion is infilling the pool and allowing sediment transport to carry into the lower Hammond River watershed, into Shortnose sturgeon overwintering habitat and nearby Yellow Lampmussel habitat. Combining engineering, hydraulics and nature-based solutions, this project will effectively address erosion by fortifying the banks, redirecting flow and dissipating energy.
The area surrounding Crowley’s Pool is lacking vegetated buffer as a result of decades of agricultural practises. In addition to channel realignment and stabilization, a wetland will be constructed to provide habitat heterogeneity for riparian biota. Over 4 years, the HRAA and community volunteers will plant 800m² of native trees and shrubs along the riparian zone. By using a combination of engineering and nature-based solutions, with guidance from knowledgeable partners, the objective of this project is to restore Crowley’s Pool and rehabilitate critical habitat, ensuring a legacy of ecological function restoration while contributing to the recovery of multiple aquatic species at risk and their habitats.
Goal 2- Sediment Transport Monitoring and Research: Using a variety of techniques (bedload trap, sediment collection tubes, turbidity, flow and cross-sections, water quality samples & analysis and remote sensing), the HRAA will document and compare sediment rates above and below Crowley’s Pool, into the Kennebecasis-Hammond River confluence point. The objective is to gain a greater understanding of river mechanics and its interrelationship between the flow of water, the movement of sediment and mobile boundaries. The project will collect baseline data on erosion rates pre-restoration, to assist in determining the overall success of the project post-restoration. Results of the sediment study will be compared with fish community & population estimates, to determine impact of sediment on fish species and their respective habitats. These results may also highlight additional areas in the watershed that require restoration, based on high levels of sedimentation, as part of future projects.
Goal 3- Research and Recovery Actions for Aquatic Species at Risk: Using multiple techniques (anglers’ creel surveys, environmental DNA samples, tissue & scale sample collection, electrofishing, boat surveys, salmon redd counts, and SCUBA footage), the HRAA will assemble a population assessment of aquatic species at risk in the Hammond River watershed. This assessment will be performed annually, and results will be compared with HRAA’s historic 30+year data. Emphasis of the assessment will be in the area surrounding Crowley’s Pool and into the lower Hammond River watershed. An annual kelt reconditioning program and broodstock collection will hopefully commence, to avoid at-sea mortality of adults, subsequently increasing egg deposition after the adults have been returned to the Hammond River post-reconditioning, ultimately increasing juvenile population densities, and creating a legacy that is facilitating the rebound of aquatic species at risk and aligning with Canada’s Nature Legacy.
Goal 4- Education, Outreach & Engagement. This project will encourage relationship building between HRAA and the Indigenous communities, creating a venue for continued collaboration. Consultation and collaboration into the future is the paramount goal. This project will include collaboration with multiple salmon conservation/watershed organizations, the Town of Quispamsis and local community. There will be volunteer citizen science opportunities and aspects will be included in HRAA’s Nature Camp to engage youth conservation activities. The project will be available to the New Brunswick Environmental Network for commentary and engagement.
PALMER BROOK ENHANCEMENT INITIATIVE
The Palmer Brook Enhancement Initiative was created to reduce levels of E. coli and improve water quality in Palmer Brook. Water quality sampling over the past two decades has indicated E. coli levels are rising in Palmer Brook, and exceeding Health Canada’s acceptable limit (400 MPN/ 100 mL) for recreational use.
Rising levels of E. coli are associated with high water temperatures and high levels of sedimentation. Water bodies adjacent to grassland and fallow pasture, such as Palmer Brook, are particularly susceptible to sedimentation and high water temperatures. Trees around brooks provide shade and help to reduce the amount of sedimentation that enters the water. In 2016, to improve water quality, the HRAA planted 3,600 native trees on both sides of Palmer Brook. This enhancement initiative will help to restore fallow pasture to its natural vegetated state over time.
While the HRAA has taken this step to combat rising levels of E. coli, the benefits will not be immediately measurable, and further initiatives will be needed for a permanent solution.
Water quality testing by the HRAA in the 1990’s indicated that E. coli was originating from a non-point source in Palmer Brook. The HRAA will need to conduct further investigations to identify whether this is a systematic problem with utilities infrastructure, a result of farming in the area or a combination of both. The HRAA plans to work with the town of Quispamsis, to develop new projects to address the issue of E. coli in Palmer Brook.
E. coli has been rising in Palmer Brook. E. coli levels have been measured above the acceptable limit for recreation health and aquatic life (dashed line).
RESTORING ATLANTIC SALMON HABITAT IN GERMAINE BROOK
Germaine Brook is a tributary to the Hammond River and contains historically important spawning grounds for Atlantic salmon. In recent years, poorly vegetated banks, beaver dams, erosion upstream, and the increased frequency of rainfall events has caused changes to Germaine Brook. These changes include channel instability, heavily eroding banks and a diversion of the brook from its original flow pattern. These changes have coincided with a significant decline in annual redd (salmon nest) and juvenile (fry and parr) counts in the brook. Erosion in Germaine Brook has led to accumulated fluvial deposits and the formation of bars on the stream banks. These bars and a beaver dam now block the stream from reverting to its original channel and braiding pattern.
The objectives of this project are to restore the natural channel of Germaine Brook by removing barriers that prevent the stream from accessing its floodplain and to stabilize 2500 square meters of steeply undercut banks through a combination of techniques such as slope armoring, stream diversion, and vegetation. By restoring channel stability, reducing sedimentation events, and removing barriers to fish passage in Germaine Brook, this project will improve salmon spawning/ juvenile habitat and enhance populations of recreational fish species. This project is funded through the Recreational Fisheries Conservation Partnerships Program. The assessment for this project is completed, and funding for the work will be obtained through a future grant.