Small Dam Removal Effectiveness Monitoring for Steelhead in Southern California Under Extended Drought Conditions
In response to a recognized gap in scientific literature pertaining to dam removal knowledge in Southern California to support endangered southern steelhead recovery, the Forum and NFHP (through a Multi-State Conservation Grant (MSCG)) provided funding in 2017 and leveraged other funding from NOAA’s Office of Habitat Conservation in 2018 to continue small dam removal monitoring on six dams in Ventura, Los Angeles, and Orange County. (This effort builds off of a large multi-agency collaboration already underway). Monitoring began in 2014, and includes capturing pre-dam removal data for two additional dams targeted for removal in 2018. This study aims to understand how sediment released by small dam removals influences streambed morphology under differing regulatory constraints throughout Southern California, employing cost-effective long-standing methodologies to:
- Understand the hydrologic context Southern California streams face under extended drought conditions;
- Examine elevation change in streambeds after dam removal to understand its influence in changing habitat features;
- Evaluate stream substrate quality in response to small dam removal.
The report for the first year’s monitoring can be found here: Small Dam Removal Effectiveness Monitoring for Steelhead in Southern California Under Extended Drought Conditions