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IMPACTS OF STREAM RESTORATION ON THERMAL AND ECOLOGICAL CONDITIONS IN COW CREEK (STILLWATER, OKLAHOMA)

Stream restoration improves riparian and instream habitats to increase biodiversity and stabilize channel morphology. Cow Creek, a third order stream located in Stillwater, OK underwent restoration in 2012, drastically decreasing riparian canopy cover. This study evaluated spatial and temporal changes between three sections of the stream: upstream unrestored, restored, and downstream unrestored. Riparian cover and water temperature data from 2015 and 2016 were analyzed for temporal changes. In 2016, stream water chemistry, canopy coverage and algal production (e.g., Chl a) were analyzed for spatial variation between sites. Preliminary analyses indicated that there were significant differences in canopy coverage (P<0.01) and water temperature (P=0.02) between 2015 and 2016. In addition, each site displayed significantly different water temperatures (P<0.01), but there were no significant shifts in water temperature between 2015 and 2016. Spatially, Site 1 (upstream unrestored) had lower Chl a concentrations which may be related to high riparian canopy coverage (76%). Canopy coverage decreased and water temperature increased downstream through the restored and unrestored stream segments.

Paige Kleindl (Primary Presenter/Author), Ohio Northern University, p-kleindl@onu.edu;


Christopher Crown ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Illinois Wesleyan University, ccrown@iwu.edu ;


Elaine Stebler ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oklahoma State University, elaine.stebler@okstate.edu ;


Andy Dzialowski ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oklahoma State University, andy.dzialowski@okstate.edu ;


Leslie Riley ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Ohio Northern University, l-riley.1@onu.edu;


Robert Verb ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Ohio Northern University, r-verb@onu.edu;


Chris Zou ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oklahoma State University, chris.zou@okstate.edu ;