Vast expanses of sedge fen in Schoolcraft County in Michigan's Upper Peninsula were ditched and diked in the early to mid-1900s to promote agricultural development and create waterfowl habitat. Unintended consequences of these actions were far reaching and included the deposition of large amounts of sand in the Manistique River. In 2002, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which now manages much of the wetland as part of Seney National Wildlife Refuge, attempted to restore streamflow to Walsh Creek and overland flow downgradient of Walsh Ditch, near C-3 Pool. Streamflow data were collected before and after remediation activities. These data indicate that efforts to restore flow to Walsh Creek were partially successful, but it is unclear whether overland flow was restored downgradient from Walsh Ditch. Alternatives for future evaluation of restoration of flow to Walsh Creek include monitoring streamflow at three easily accessible locations. Restoration of overland flow downgradient from Walsh Ditch can be assessed in the future by monitoring flows at three additional sites. Restoration of either site can be assessed by monitoring vegetation shifts, possibly with aerial or satellite imagery.
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USGS Numbered Series
Changes in streamflow patterns related to hydrologic restoration of a sedge fen wetland in Seney National Wildlife Refuge, Michigan, 1998-2004