Barrier Inventory GIS Maine Forest Service

Project Name: Barrier Inventory and GIS Mapping

Location: Mattawamkeag, ME

Project Size: 1000-Square Mile

Client: Maine Forest Service

Services: Dam and Culvert Inventory, GIS Database, Stream crossing Best Management Practices

Project Summary:

Many of Maine’s watersheds have reduced fish productivity due to aquatic habitat fragmentation stemming from decades of poor culvert installations and a myriad of old legacy dams that prevent or impair volitional migration of fish species to and from spawning and nursery habitat. The Maine Forest Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service began to address this issue by undertaking an inventory and prioritization of migration barriers in the Mattawamkeag River watershed. Kleinschmidt Associates and James W. Sewall Company led a project to inventory culverts, pipes and small dams within the 1000-square mile Mattawamkeag watershed.

Kleinschmidt led the inventory of over 900 potential known barriers. This included developing written, detailed survey protocols and data sheets each tailored for dams or road crossings. Kleinschmidt also conducted training sessions for field technicians, provided quality control for the data collection via review of submitted data, in-field audits, and retraining of field crews where necessary. Spot review of data continued throughout the data collection period.

Kleinschmidt also developed an algorithm methodology to rank and prioritize stream barrier remediation, using biological, cost, and engineering feasibility criteria. Kleinschmidt also originated outreach materials — brochures and presentations — used by the Forest Service to promote proper stream crossing BMPs and replacement methods. Outreach materials include comparisons of improperly vs. properly designed and placed structures for stream crossings. The work culminated in a report to the Forest Service, and preparation of GIS datasets of the mapped inventory and results.