Chipola River, Florida

Conservation Action:
This project will result in 1.9 miles of stream bank restoration, removal of livestock from the river, and replacement of a perched culvert within the Chipola River for the benefit of shoal bass and imperiled mussel species.

The importance to the Resource:
Sedimentation is widely reported as a contributing factor in the decline of freshwater mussel and fish populations. Sediment runoff continues to threaten the quality and availability of essential habitat for 6 species of threatened and endangered freshwater mussels, Gulf striped bass, and shoal bass in the Chipola River.

The problem:
Stream sedimentation reduces the quality and availability of aquatic habitats, impairs water quality, increases flooding, impairs navigation and recreation, and alters alluvial and fluvial geomorphology.

The objective:
The objective is to collaborate with partners to implement action items to benefit aquatic resources in the Chipola River. Action items include reducing streambank erosion, providing alternative watering sites for livestock and providing fencing to keep them out, and replacing a perched culvert with a more appropriately designed stream crossing.

The method:
Restoration design plans will be developed for each site to implement streambank restoration, fencing for livestock and replacement of a perched culvert. Natural stream design will be applied as appropriate.

Project Partners:
US Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS)
Florida’s Wildlife Legacy Initiative (FWLI)
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FFWCC)
The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
West Florida Resource Conservation and Development Council
Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership (SARP)
Native Black Bass Initiative (NBBI)

FLOW: A Chipola River Story -

2013 Waters to Watch