Construction and Restoration Process
The Red Creek Consolidated Mitigation Bank consists of several projects including stream, forest and habitat restoration.
Many of the stream banks within the Red Creek project site were severely eroded like this one. Restoring a stream to health includes grading the bank to the proper slope and installing erosion control practices.
Stream Restoration: Before constructing a new stream channel, the site is cleared of overgrown brush and some trees.
Removed brush is prepared as "toe wood" for use as stream bank erosion control.
Lower Holly Creek Stream Restoration: The site of a future new channel is marked with paint.
Excavation of the new stream channel begins.
A log structure is installed to prevent erosion of the stream bed.
Filter fabric is installed behind the logs to keep soil from washing out under the structure.
Soil is replaced in the stream bed behind the structure.
In another location on the same channel, a spot is excavated for installation of "toe wood".
The backhoe is used to place the "toe wood" into the stream bank which helps control erosion and stabilize the bank.
The "toe wood" is covered with soil.
Erosion control blankets are installed along the stream bank.
Lower Holly Creek after construction of a new channel. Notice the erosion control blankets and "toe wood" used to stabilize the bank.
Upper Holly Creek Stream Restoration: Step pools are constructed to protect the high-quality up-stream portion of the creek from erosion.
Step pools at Upper Holly Creek after construction.
This high-quality stream is located up-stream of the step pools.
Upper Holly Creek after construction. Notice the floodplain and newly planted trees along the stream.
Forest Restoration: Thinning loblolly pine plantations along the streams and in the uplands in preparation for longleaf pine forest restoration.
After thinning the loblolly pines, longleaf pine seedlings and native hardwood trees are planted.
Habitat Restoration: Mechanical brush cutting is used to clear unwanted brush in wet pine flats in preparation of control burns.
Control burns, also know as prescribed fire, are used to restore the natural process of fire back on to the landscape.
Herbicides are selectively used to control unwanted invasives such as cogon grass (Imperata cylindrica), a tropical plant that spreads rapidly and displaces native vegetation and wildlife.
Monitoring Restoration Success: Wells are used to monitor the elevation and distribution of ground water. Monitoring is necessary to assess meeting of wetland success criteria.
Conservancy scientist, Dustin Shaneyfelt, assists with plant monitoring which helps determine the effectiveness of management activities.
Conservancy scientist, Andy Peck, monitors macro-invertebrates (animals without backbones) in streams at Red Creek: high macro-invertebrate species diversity indicates improved/sustained stream health.
Conservancy staff, Elizabeth Hanson, Donald Newman and Becky Stowe, inspect a sample for macro-invertebrates.
Red Creek - The Conservancy's Red Creek restoration project will improve the quality of the water flowing into Red Creek.