Often towns, communities, and watershed organizations want to learn more about the flood risk and aquatic habitat in their rivers and streams.
Redstart, led by scientist Dan “Rudi” Ruddell, works with these local groups to conduct field assessments, analyze the resulting data, and prepare reports that explain the river’s past, present, and future; and offer concrete steps to improve river health and mitigate flood risk.
Vermont’s River Management Program is a national leader in stream geomorphic assessment and offers assistance to towns and community groups. Often with the support of this program, Redstart’s river scientists have worked in watersheds around Vermont including the Waits, the Wells, the White, and the Winooski. Our clients include:
- the White River Partnership,
- the Connecticut River Watershed Council
- the Town of Newbury
- the Caledonia County Natural Resources Council, and
- the Friends of the Winooski River.
Our work has led to a number of projects to assist river health and reduce flood risk, including riparian buffer plantings, river corridor easements, culvert and bridge retrofits and replacements, and changes in zoning to reduce human conflicts with rivers.
Culverts can serve as unintended barriers to the movement of fish and other aquatic organisms. This can result in the isolation of a population, the reduction of genetic exchange, and limited access to food sources. To determine the viability of a culvert, Restart employs a rapid assessment protocol developed by the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife . Generally this work occurs on a watershed scale and with the partnership of nonprofit organizations such as The Nature Conservancy, the Connecticut River Watershed Council, and community groups well-positioned to work with towns and landowners to implement projects including culvert replacements and retrofits.