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Removal of Woody Debris May Affect Stream Channel Stability

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Several western states mandate the removal of logging debris from streams in order to prevent accumulations impassable to anadromous fish. Monitoring a small western Washington stream revealed large changes in channel structure during the first high flow after cleaning. Nearly 60 percent of the monitored pieces of debris moved during this storm, channel cross sections were substantially altered by movement of stored sediment, and the number, area, and volume of pools decreased. The degree of channel rearrangement was greater than in a comparable undisturbed stream. Subsequent storms caused much less debris movement and channel change than the first high flow, even though some of the later flows were of greater magnitude. An interim guide to stream cleaning is precribed.
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Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Aquatic Ecologist at the Weyerhauser Company's Forestry Research Center, Centralia, WA 98531.

Publication date: 01 October 1984

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