Riparian Ecology along the Middle Sacramento River:
Understanding Riparian Ecology from the Perspective of Flowing Water
Physical River Processes drive riparian ecology. Flooding and flowing water determine how sediment will be moved through the watershed and how it is distributed across the floodplain, with riparian vegetation responding to the different growing conditions provided by the sediment patterns. Flow velocity shapes the plants as they grow and creates the characteristic vegetation structures that we associate with riparian areas.
This workshop will take place at two different field locations along the middle Sacramento River. We will hike across floodplains and along river banks and onto inchannel sandbars. We will examine how the hydraulics of river flows have formed the sediment and vegetation patterns across the floodplain. Participants will have the opportunity to excavate shallow holes or pits to determine stratification of sediment profiles under and near selected plants and geomorphic surfaces (small shovels and soil auger will be provided).
The instructors for this workshop are: Dr. Tom Griggs, Senior Restoration Ecologist (retired) River Partners; Michael Rogner, Associate Restoration Ecologist, River Partners; and Stefan Lorenzato, Chief Riverine Ecosystem Section, DWR-IRWM, California Department of Water Resources.