USGS US Army Corps of Engineers NRCS University of Florida / IFAS Baltimore Marriott Waterfront NCER 2011 * 4th National Conference on Ecosystem Restoration * Aug 1-5, 2011 * Baltimore, MD



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August 21-25, 2011
Merida, Yucatan, Mexico
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Technical Training Field Trips
Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Please note the number of participants individual field trips are limited to is published at the top of each flyer. Field trip seating is very limited therefore participation is restricted to meeting attendees only.  Sorry, no guests.

Click here to print one PDF of ALL Field Trip flyers. Individuals flyers may be accessed through the PDF links below.

Patapsco River Dam Removal Projects – Bloede Dam, Simkins Dam and Union Dam (Limited to 20 people)
Bus Departs Hotel at 11:30am
Returns to Hotel at 5:30pm

Bloede Dam is 220 feet long, 40 feet wide at the base and has a drop of 26.5 feet. It is an Amburson Hydraulic Construction Company (Boston type) reinforced concrete slab and buttress dam. It was the first known instance of a submerged hydroelectric plant where the power plant was housed under the spillway. It is also recognized as one of the earliest dams constructed of reinforced concrete.

Simkins and Union Dams will have been removed. The former sites of these dams will be visited. Union Dam was removed from October 2009 to September 2010 using a heavily engineered approach with multiple river diversions and realignment of the stream channel. In contrast, the Simkins Dam removal used a passive sediment management approach releasing approximately 80,000-100,000 cubic yards of sand and gravel that was stored behind the dam. Intensive monitoring of the site has been conducted with its removal and data will be shared at the site visit.


Detailed Tour Information (Printable PDF)

Urban Stream Restoration Site (Limited to 20 people)
Bus Departs Hotel at 11:30am
Returns to Hotel at 7:30pm

The first stop at Spring Branch, an eroding headwater stream system, will focus on a more than 10-yr old restoration project which included the restoration of a concrete trapezoidal channel.

The second stop will be at Mine Bank Run, a restoration project which has been the focus of years of research and monitoring. In addition to describing the restoration, we will discuss the results of the University of Maryland’s site studies.

The final stop will be Stony Branch, a more recent approach to stream restoration involving the removal of legacy sediments and restoration of the relationship between the stream and its floodplain. This project was controversial and occupied the local new for weeks as a result of the removal of the forested riparian cover to restore floodplain connection.

Detailed Tour Information (Printable PDF)

Tidal Wetland and Vernal Pool Restoration Site (Tour is limited to 20 people)
Bus Departs Hotel at 11:30am
Returns to Hotel at 7:30pm

The Cox Creek mitigation site is associated with the Cox Creek Dredged Material Management Facility (DMMF). The reconstruction of the Cox Creek DMMF resulted in the need for mitigation. The 12-ac mitigation site was an 8-ac mono-typic Phragmites stand and a four-acre still pond (both above the influence of tide). The mitigation project involved the excavation and removal of the Phragmites, lowering the site into the intertidal range.

The mitigation target was to create a mosaic of unvegetated open water, vegetated marsh, and a beach strand dominated by supra-tidal shrub community. This was accomplished through over-excavation of areas to create sub-tidal ponds, grading of other areas to intertidal marsh elevations for both Spartina alternifora and Spartina patens communities, and either retention of beach strand or building-up of beach strand to an elevation above normal tidal influence. A tidal channel connection was created, and the site was planted. The presence of Canada geese led to erection of exclusion fencing across the site.

Detailed Tour Information (Printable PDF)

 Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC)
(Tour is limited to 20 people)
Bus Departs Hotel at 11:30am
Returns to Hotel at 6:00pm

Participants will be introduced to the research conducted at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center by meeting with two research scientists and then will be presented with a general overview of all the research conducted at the 18 different laboratories housed onsite. The first speaker, Dr. Pat Megonigal works in the Biogeochemistry lab and will discuss the impacts of global climate change on plants and intertidal zones, relating specifically to CO2 and sea level rise. During this talk participants will be shuttled to the world’s longest running CO2 study site to look at the chambers used for this research. Next Dr. John Parker will discuss the impacts of invasive species on ecosystem landscapes, and herbivory by large mammals. His research speaks directly to human impacts on native ecosystems. The last talk of the day will be an overview of the other 16 laboratories at SERC and their global and local research. Laboratories discussed will include the Fish and Invertebrate Lab, Plant Ecology Lab, Plant and Animal Interaction Lab (Mangroves), Nutrient Ecology Lab, Marine Invasive Species Lab and more!

Detailed Tour Information (Printable PDF)

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