Permanent channel cross-sectional transects perpendicular to flow were used to estimate changes in spring and resultant creek channel morphology. Three cattle grazing treatments (none, light, and moderate) were applied to 2-5 ha pastures containing a perennial spring and resultant creek cohort for 5 years. Grazing effects on the total change in channel morphology were not detected, nor did our method detect channel morphology change over the 5 year study period. Ungrazed springs and creeks were observed to change more than grazed springs and creeks although these differences were not statistically significant. Observed, but not significant, change over time appears related to rainfall patterns. Permanent channel cross-sections, one of the currently recommended methods for monitoring livestock grazing impacts on stream channels, may not be adequate for detecting channel changes in low-flow spring/creek systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology