Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/12/2007
Publication Date: 9/1/2007
Citation: Knight, S.S., Boyer, K.L. 2007. Effects of Conservation Practices on Aquatic Habitats and Fauna. In: Haufler, J. B., Editor. Fish and Wildlife Benefits of Agricultural Conservation Practices. The Wildlife Society Technical Review 07-1, Bethesda, Maryland. p. 83-101. Interpretive Summary: A major goal of both state and federal agricultural and environmental agencies is to conserve and protect soil, water and wildlife while at the same time maintaining agricultural productivity. It has been assumed that if such conservation practices designed to address these goals are applied according to USDA standards, fish and wildlife will be protected or enhanced. This paper examines the effects of NRCS designed conservation practices used as conservation measures on aquatic species and their habitats. This research will directly support the Natural Resources Conservation Service by summarizing the most current research on conservation effects on aquatic life and will provide a starting point for the Conservation Effects Assessment Project.
Technical Abstract: A major goal of both state and federal agricultural and environmental agencies is sustainable management of watersheds where agriculture is a dominant land use. These agencies encourage a watershed conservation approach which requires a suite of management practices that address natural resource concerns on agricultural landscapes. The primary goals of these practices are to a) control non-point source pollutants (b) provide adequate water supplies, and (c) provide stream/river channel stability. Aquatic species and their habitats play a pivotal role in how we manage watersheds with the ultimate goal of sustaining water quality and ecological integrity. It has been assumed that if such conservation practices designed to address the goals listed above are applied according to USDA standards, habitats will benefit as will the species that inhabit them. This paper examines the effects of NRCS defined conservation practices used as conservation measures for aquatic species and their habitats.