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Water 2016, 8(5), 174; doi:10.3390/w8050174

Integrating Limiting-Factors Analysis with Process-Based Restoration to Improve Recovery of Endangered Salmonids in the Pacific Northwest, USA

1
Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA 93106, USA
2
Cardno, Inc., 801 Second Avenue, Suite 700, Seattle, WA 98104, USA
3
Northwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries, 2725 Montlake Blvd E, Seattle, WA 98112, USA
4
SCR Environmental; Winthrop, WA 98862, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: John S. Schwartz and Kevin B. Strychar
Received: 1 February 2016 / Revised: 14 March 2016 / Accepted: 6 April 2016 / Published: 28 April 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4547 KB, uploaded 28 April 2016]   |  

Abstract

Two approaches to ecological restoration planning, limiting-factors analysis and process-based restoration, are employed in efforts to recover endangered salmonid species throughout the Pacific Northwest of North America. Limiting-factors analysis seeks to identify physical limitations to fish production that may be addressed by habitat restoration; it is known as the “Field of Dreams” hypothesis (i.e., if you build it, they will come). Process-based restoration, in contrast, assumes that protection and/or restoration of watershed-scale processes will best achieve self-sustaining habitat features that support salmon populations. Two case studies from the Columbia River basin (northwestern USA) display current efforts to integrate these two restoration approaches to improve salmonid populations. Although these examples both identify site-specific habitat features to construct, they also recognize the importance of supporting key watershed processes to achieve restoration goals. The challenge in advancing the practice of restoration planning is not in simply acknowledging the conceptual benefits of process-based restoration while maintaining a traditional focus on enumerating site-specific conditions and identifying habitat-construction projects, but rather in following process-based guidance during recovery planning and, ultimately, through implementation of on-the-ground actions. We encourage a realignment of the restoration community to truly embrace a process-based, multi-scalar view of the riverine landscape. View Full-Text
Keywords: river restoration; Columbia River basin; process-based restoration; limiting-factors analysis; endangered species river restoration; Columbia River basin; process-based restoration; limiting-factors analysis; endangered species
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Booth, D.B.; Scholz, J.G.; Beechie, T.J.; Ralph, S.C. Integrating Limiting-Factors Analysis with Process-Based Restoration to Improve Recovery of Endangered Salmonids in the Pacific Northwest, USA. Water 2016, 8, 174.

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