Comparison photo of retired riparian buffers to non-retired

Split photo showing difference between a stream buffer with native vegetation on left, and little native vegetation on right

Detailed Description

Discontinuing agricultural production along stream corridors and creating retired riparian buffers, has been shown to be a successful method of decreasing the amount of sediment and nutrients that are delivered to the stream.  In the study basin, as elsewhere, these buffers are discontinuous along the length of the stream and are not always present on both sides of the stream.  Example (left, above) shows a stream reach where land has been retired on both sides with a 33-foot buffer.

In areas where land retirement has not occurred along the stream channel, the amount and health of plants growing along and in the stream is decreased.  In example (right, above), there is little leafy vegetation in the stream, only algae growing.  This type of stream environment provides less shelter for organisms in terms of streamflow and temperature.


Image Dimensions: 479 x 232

Date Taken:

Location Taken: US