What is a watershed assessment?
Watershed assessments generally include procedures for identifying locations prone to mass wast ing and surface erosion, as well as protocols for evaluating the sensitivity of riparian areas, suscepti bility to hydrologic alterations, floodplain functions, and connectivity of habitats.
How many watersheds are in West Virginia?
West Virginia’s 32 Major Watersheds.
How do you manage a watershed?
Several components or steps are necessary: (1) establishment of goals and objectives, (2) an inventory of the watershed and assessment of possible contaminant sources, (3) development and (4) implementation of protection strategies, and (5) monitoring and evaluation of program effectiveness.
What is evaluated in a healthy watersheds assessment?
WHAF is based on a whole-system approach, evaluating five components that together provide an integrated view of watershed health: biology, connectivity, geomorphology, hydrology and water quality.
What kind of data is used to determine the health of a watershed?
The Framework evaluates the integrity of watersheds through four major categories of watershed health indicators: watershed hydrology, physical habitat, water quality and biological communities.
How do you find watershed boundaries?
Topography is the key element affecting how land drains to a particular point. The boundary of a watershed is defined by the highest elevations surrounding a lake or river segment. A drop of water falling outside of the boundary will drain to another watershed.
What watershed is West Virginia in?
West Virginia’s portion of the Chesapeake Bay watershed is the land that drains into the Potomac River and its tributaries and a small area that drains into the James River. Fourteen percent (14%) of West Virginia drains into the Potomac River and on to the Chesapeake Bay.
What are 4 reasons watersheds are important?
Healthy intact watersheds provide many ecosystem services that are necessary for our social and economic well-being. These services include water filtration and storage, air filtration, carbon storage, nutrient cycling, soil formation, recreation, food and timber.
What are 4 pollutants that affect watersheds?
Pollutants such as motor oil leaked on parking lots, plastic grocery bags, pesticides, fertilizers, detergents, and sediments are known as nonpoint source pollutants. Stormwater runoff from nonpoint source pollution is one of the most significant threats to aquatic ecosystems in the United States.
What are the two main parts of watershed management?
The three main components in watershed management are land management, water management and biomass management. Land characteristics like terrain, slope, formation, depth, texture, moisture, infiltration rate and soil capability are the major determinants of land management activities in a watershed.
How do you determine the watershed address for a particular area?
To find a HUC for your area of interest, follow these steps:
- Go to the Watersheds web page at https://www.epa.gov/waterdata/surf-your-watershed/.
- Enter a Zip Code to Find Your Watershed, or use any of the other search options provided by the More info link.
How many watershed classifications are there?
Hydrologic Unit: Watersheds in the United States and the Caribbean were delineated by the U.S. Geological Survey using a national standard hierarchical system based on surface hydrologic features and are classified into four types of hydrologic units: first-field (region), second-field (sub-region), third-field ( …
What is considered a small watershed?
A watershed can be small, such as a modest inland lake or a single county. Conversely, some watersheds encompass thousands of square miles and may contain streams, rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and underlying groundwater that are hundreds of miles inland.
What is the largest watershed in the United States?
the Mississippi River Watershed
The largest watershed in the United States is the Mississippi River Watershed, which drains 1.15 million square miles from all or parts of 31 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces stretching from the Rockies to the Appalachians!
How do we determine the health of a watershed?
Watershed indicators are first selected, based on the six essential ecological attributes fundamental to the healthy watersheds assessment approach:
- Landscape Condition.
- Water Quality.
- Biological Condition.
What is the most important water quality issue facing our watersheds?
Stormwater runoff from nonpoint source pollution is one of the most significant threats to aquatic ecosystems in the United States. As water runs over and through the watershed, it picks up and carries contaminants and soil.
How many watersheds are there in West Virginia?
West Virginia has 32 watersheds divided according to hydrologic unit codes (HUC) that contribute to the Chesapeake Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. The waters west of the eastern continental divide flow into the Ohio River.
What does the West Virginia DEP assess?
The West Virginia DEP assesses three major aspects of watershed health when it performs an ecological assessment; water quality, habitat condition, and benthic macroinvertebrate community status.
What is an ecological assessment of a watershed?
An ecological assessment of a watershed includes evaluations of more than one aspect of watershed health. The term “ecological” implies that both organisms and their environments are studied together.