THE IMPACT OF WOODY DEBRIS ON INTERMITTENT HEADWATER STREAMS
This research project’s primary goal was to explore the relationships between large woody debris (LWD), biological integrity and bank stability within intermittent headwater streams in the Alleghany Plateau ecoregion. Ten streams with drainage basins ranging from 0.056 mi 2 to 0.28 mi 2 with predominantly forested land- use were selected with ranging amounts of LWD. LWD with a length greater than 0.5m and a width of .10m in the active channel was measured. LWD volume was compared to median particle size (D50), stream power index (SPI), unit stream power, gradient, and a modified bank erosion hazard index score (BEHI). LWD volume was also compared to a headwater macroinvertebrate field evaluation index score (Ohio HMFEI), and percentages of Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera taxa. The LWD volumes ranged from 0 to 6 cubic meters. Contrary to the hypothesis, linear regressions, and correlations comparing LWD volume to physical and biological parameters revealed no significant correlations. This research finding suggests that naturally occurring LWD may have less impact compared to other landscape and channel variables within streams in this size stream in our ecoregion.
Gabrielle Russell (Primary Presenter/Author), Ohio University, firstname.lastname@example.org;