This study documented the effects of wing-dike notching on the availabilit of shallow water habitat in the Lower Missouri River. Five wing dikes were surveyed in late May 2004 after they were notched in early May as part of shallow-water habitat (SWH) rehabilitation activities undertaken by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Surveys included high-resolution hydroacoustic depth, velocity, and substrate mapping. Relations of bottom elevations within the wing dike fields to index discharges and water-surface elevations indicate that little habitat meeting the SWH definition was created immediately following notching. This result is not unexpected, as significant geomorphic adjustment may require large flow events. Depth, velocity, and substrate measurements in the post-rehabilitation time period provide baseline data for monitoring ongoing changes. Differences in elevation and substrate were noted at all sites. Most dike fields showed substantial aggradation and replacement of mud substrate with sandier sediment, although the changes did not result in increased availability of SWH at the index discharge. It is not known how much of the elevation and substrate changes can be attributed directly to notching and how much would result from normal sediment transport variation.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Assessment of Shallow-Water Habitat Availability in Modified Dike Structures, Lower Missouri River, 2004