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WWRC 88-27
Evaluation of Trout Habitat Formation due to Flow Enhancement in a Previously Ephemeral Stream

Abstract

As part of mitigation efforts for impacts of Cheyenne, Wyoming's Stage II transbasin water diversion project, the South Fork of Middle Crow Creek (SFMCC), a previously ephemeral stream is being used to convey water and create fish habitat. After two years of enhanced flow the amount of stream channel has increased 31% while beaver pond habitat has more than doubled. Brook trout have been stocked into the beaver ponds and provide some fishing opportunity. Limiting factors in the system include interrupted flow, discontinuous channels, and summer water temperatures in excess of 75 F. Analysis using the Physical Habitat Simulation System indicates that a flow of 2.5 cubic feet per second would maximize the amount of brook trout habitat in the SFMCC under present channel conditions.

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